chapter  14
12 Pages

Torn between Identities: Predictors of Adjustment to Identity


A ccording to social identity theory (Tajfel & Turner, 1979) and self-categori-zation theory (Turner, Hogg, Oakes, Reicher, & Wetherell, 1986), people’s self-concepts are largely determined by the social groups of which they are members. From these theories’ basic assumption that the self is intrinsically linked to the group, it follows that features of social groups should affect members’ individual selves (and vice versa). For instance, empirical work in this tradition has shown that characteristics of a group, such as status (for a review see Ellemers & Barreto, 2001), level of acceptance by outgroups (e.g., Postmes & Branscombe, 2002), and sociostructural characteristics of intergroup relations (Tajfel & Turner, 1979) all affect group members’ psychological experiences.