chapter  3
28 Pages

Intergroup Behaviour

These two very different extracts illustrate some of the themes to be explored in this chapter. The first describes how intergroup conflict can arise out of the categorization of people into two groups on the basis of a relatively meaningless and arbitrary criterion. It

describes how such small beginnings can result in extreme intergroup conflict, and how individuals fashion an identity from the category in which they fall: Big-Endians. The second extract also highlights the role of identity in intergroup behaviour: it illustrates how strategies of intergroup behaviour serve a psychological motive, that of positive selfevaluation, which can be more fundamental than more material goals.