The Connection between Belonging to a Group and Self Esteem


The following points have come out of research into social identity theory:


  • In laboratory experiments of Social Identity theory those who were put into groups showed higher self esteem.


  • In society, groups with low social status improve member's self esteem by attempting to alter their social status. This leads to well organised political and social action on the part of those groups who recognise their low social status as unfair or inappropriate. Examples of this include Gay Pride and Black Pride movements and groups working for minority language revival e.g. Welsh Language.


  • Dominant groups in society react negatively to challenges to their privileged position and may express this in terms of prejudice towards minority groups. Examples of this include those opposed to the ordination of women in religious denominations. (Hogg & Abrams, 2000)