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.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science