Social Psychology, The Social Identity

1492 Words6 Pages
Within social psychology, the social identity tradition (Tajfel, Billig, Bundy, & Flament, 1971) argues that individuals possess more than their characteristic personal identities, which are activated during interpersonal contact with others; in addition, people can engage in intergroup behavior as informed by their social identities (Gudykunst & Bond, 1980). Such social identities comprise memberships in any psychologically relevant grouping with which an individual identifies, including kin, peers, profession, nation, and cultural identity (Galang, Quiñones, Adriano, Portillo, & Carvajal, 2015). The ingroup identification afforded by social identities then allows individuals to distinguish between people belonging to and excluded from the ingroup (Brewer & Yuki, 2007), and to bolster one’s self-concept through affiliation with high-status groups and individuals (Gudykunst & Bond, 1980). In addition, these social identities are created and manifested in different ways across cultures as a function of the values endorsed by society, the ways in which society’s members construe themselves, and the manners in which their interpersonal relationships are structured (Feitosa, Salas, & Salazar, 2012).
Moreover, social identity theory (SIT) has been invoked as an explanation for a social psychological phenomenon introduced in Robert Cialdini and his colleagues’ (1976) research: basking in reflected glory (BIRG). As reflected in the opening quote, individuals are able to emphasize
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