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J Pers Soc Psychol. 2002 Jan;82(1):75-88.

Sequential or parallel processes? A longitudinal field study concerning determinants of identity-management strategies.

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Friedrich-Schiller-Universität, Lehrstuhl für Sozialpsychologie, Jena, Germany.


Using a longitudinal field design, this study tested the dynamics of an integrative model of social identity theory (SIT) and relative deprivation theory (RDT) with regard to relations between perceived socio-structural characteristics, perceived in-group identification, perceived fraternal deprivation (i.e., resentment) and identity-management-strategy preference. Trait-state analyses revealed that the dynamic relationship among constructs in the model can best be explained in terms of trait-dependent variation rather than sequentially ordered processing. The trait components of the variables replicate previous findings concerning SIT and RDT. However. stable functional relations between variables and their traitlike character contradict the notion that their underlying processes are linear and sequential. Rather, variables and their relations can be regarded as the product of parallel processes. The authors discuss the results as a challenge to core assumptions of SIT.

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