Self-categorization and the nature of norm formation, conformity, and group polarization

Abrams, Dominic; Wetherell, Margaret; Cochrane, Sandra; Hogg, Michael A. and Turner, John (1990). Self-categorization and the nature of norm formation, conformity, and group polarization. British Journal of Social Psychology, 29(2) pp. 97–121.

URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(IS...

Abstract

Contrasted theoretical approaches to social influence that stress interpersonal dependence or group membership, using 3 influence paradigms: (1) M. Sherif's (1936) autokinetic effect paradigm (AEP) (2) S. Asch's (1952) conformity effect paradigm (CEP) and (3) a group polarization paradigm (GPP). Three experiments were conducted with a total of 194 undergraduates and 116 16–17 yr olds. In the AEP, the impact of confederates on the formation of a norm decreased as their membership of a different category was made more salient. In the CEP, surveillance exerted normative pressure if done by an in-group but not an out-group. In the GPP, when categorical differences between 2 subgroups of a discussion were made salient, convergence of opinion between the subgroups was inhibited.

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