- The influence of discrimination and fairness on collective self-esteem
- Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
- Volume | Issue number
- 35 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
This article examines the influence of discrimination and fairness on collective self-esteem. Whereas social identity theory's self-esteem hypothesis emphasizes that discrimination can enhance self-esteem, the authors contend that this self-esteem advantage will actually reverse when groups are primed with the idea of engaging in a fair intergroup competition. They measured (Study 1) and manipulated (Study 2) discrimination and fairness in real (Study 1) and minimal (Study 2) groups, after which they manipulated the presence of an intergroup competition in both studies. Collective self-esteem served as the main dependent measure. Results indicated that when an intergroup competition was present or impending, previously expressed fairness (or less discrimination) was positively related to self-esteem, whereas discrimination was positively related to collective self-esteem in the absence of an intergroup competition. Results are discussed in terms of social identity theory and the importance of the broader social context for examining the relationship between discrimination and self-esteem.
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