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. This work has been made available online in accordance with publisher policies or with permission. Permission for further reuse of this content should be sought from the publisher or the rights holder. This is the author created accepted manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1177/1368430220936759
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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