Shared social identity transforms social relations in imaginary crowds
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In this paper we present three studies that address the difference between physical and psychological groups, the conditions which create a transformation from the one into the other, and the psychological processes underlying this transformation. In Study 1 we demonstrate correlations between shared social identity, desired physical proximity to others and positive emotions in the company of others. Study 2, employing a between-subjects design, finds that an event which creates shared fate, such as the breakdown of a train, leads to greater comfort in social interactions (e.g. ease of conversation) and comfort in sensual interactions (e.g. tolerance of the physical touch) with other passengers, and that this occurs through an increase in shared social identity but not through social identification. Study 3 obtains similar findings using a within-subjects design. In combination, these studies provide consistent evidence for the role of shared social identity in the emergence of psychological from physical groups.
Neville , F G , Novelli , D , Drury , J & Reicher , S D 2020 , ' Shared social identity transforms social relations in imaginary crowds ' , Group Processes and Intergroup Relations , vol. Online First . https://doi.org/10.1177/1368430220936759
Group Processes and Intergroup Relations
Copyright © The Author(s) 2020. Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
DescriptionThis research was supported by ESRC Postgraduate Studentships for the first (PTA-030-200600100) and second authors (PTA-031-200500096), and an ESRC research grant for the third and fourth authors (ES/N01068X/1).
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