Achieving Positive Social Identity: Social Mobility, Social Creativity, and Permeability of Group Boundaries

Linda A. Jackson, Linda A. Sullivan, Richard J. Harnish, Carole N. Hodge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

149 Scopus citations

Abstract

Three experiments examined 5 hypotheses of social identity theory (H. Tajfel & J. C. Turner, 1979) concerning social mobility and social creativity strategies and how permeability of group boundaries affects strategy use. As predicted, members of negatively distinctive in-groups distanced themselves psychologically from the in-group (social mobility), rated the distinguishing dimension as less undesirable (social creativity), and rated the in-group more favorably on other dimensions (social creativity) than did members of nondistinctive in-groups. Also as predicted, social creativity strategies were more likely to be used when group boundaries were impermeable rather than permeable. Permeability effects on social mobility strategies were more complex than predicted. Additional findings shed light on relationships among identity-enhancement strategies and on how dimensions are chosen to flatter a negatively distinctive in-group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-254
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Volume70
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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