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Psychol Rev. 1992 Oct;99(4):689-723.

The four elementary forms of sociality: framework for a unified theory of social relations.

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Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104-6196.


The motivation, planning, production, comprehension, coordination, and evaluation of human social life may be based largely on combinations of 4 psychological models. In communal sharing, people treat all members of a category as equivalent. In authority ranking, people attend to their positions in a linear ordering. In equality matching, people keep track of the imbalances among them. In market pricing, people orient to ratio values. Cultures use different rules to implement the 4 models. In addition to an array of inductive evidence from many cultures and approaches, the theory has been supported by ethnographic field work and 19 experimental studies using 7 different methods testing 6 different cognitive predictions on a wide range of subjects from 5 cultures.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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