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Group-based pride and out-group attitudes: the role of security of national identity and intergroup comparison

On October 20, Alexandra Sivova (MSc in Psychology at HSE and TiU), took part in the "Culture Matters" research seminar with the report on "Group-based pride and out-group attitudes: the role of security of national identity and intergroup comparison".

The study investigates the question of why pride after a victory of a sports team is sometimes followed by derogation of an unfortunate opponent?

Alexandra suggests two distinct reasons for the negative connection between the emotion of pride and out-group attitudes. First, an interaction of the identification-related factors, which she called security of identification. Low group self-esteem after in-group’s status threat accompanied with high identification can influence the connection between pride and out-group attitudes, making its negative. Second, the presence of intergroup comparison could also strengthen this negative connection.

Respondents holding Russian national identity (N = 406) participated in the study.

The results supported the role of security of identity in out-group attitudes, however, suggesting that pride leads to more positive attitudes among high identifiers with low group self-esteem. In contrast, pride was followed by more negative out-group attitudes among people with the secure identity. Intergroup comparison in its turn had no impact on the differences between people with secure and insecure identity in regard to out-group and in-group attitudes.

These results establish security of identity as an important variable that makes people proud if their group’s achievement prone to out-group derogation.