Social Identity

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Social Identity
From "Encyclopedia of Women and Gender: Sex Similarities and
Differences and the Impact of Society on Gender"
I. Conceptions and Definitions
II. Types of Social Identity
III. Multiplicity and Intersectionality
IV. Aspects of Social Identity
V. Assessing Social Identity
VI. Development and Change
VII. Negotiating Social Identities

Glossary
Intersectionality
The condition in which a person simultaneously belongs to two or more social categories or social statuses and the unique consequences that result from that combination.
Minimal group paradigm
An experimental procedure for creating social identity conditions in which participants are arbitrarily assigned to one group or another. Social representations
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Other social identities can be defined more generally, tied not to any individual but to a generic group. Thus to identify as a doctor, for example, implies a shared definition with countless others, many of whom you may not know anything in particular about. Another defining characteristic of occupational identities is that they are chosen by the person (what is sometimes called an achieved status). In contrast, social identities such as ethnicity or gender are ascribed categories, given to one at birth. Social identities also differ in the status or value that is attached to them. In Table I, for example, the stigmatized identities stand apart from the other types of social identity, all of which are typically regarded more positively.
In the original study that defined the categories presented in Table I, gender was clustered together with other relationship identities in the final statistical solution. Certainly it is true that many relationships are gendered in their definition and implications (as are many occupations as well). However, because of the importance and centrality of gender in our lives, it is often considered as a category in itself. Similarly, sexual orientation can be classified as one form of a relationship identity, but it often has greater prominence than other
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