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A motivational hierarchy within: primacy of the individual self, relational self, or collective self?

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The individual self, relational self, and collective self are important and meaningful aspects of identity. However, they plausibly differ in their relative importance such that one self lies closer to the motivational core of the self-concept, better represent the “home base” of selfhood, or, simply stated, is motivationally primary. Four multi-method studies tested the relative motivational-primacy of the selves. Despite their disparate methods, the studies yielded consistent evidence of a three-tiered hierarchy with the individual self at the top, followed by the relational self, and trailed at the bottom by the collective self. The same hierarchy emerged in the Eastern culture of China and the Western cultures of the US and UK. Such pancultural consistency suggests that the motivationalhierarchy is a fundamental pattern of the human self.

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Gaertner, Lowell, Sedikides, Constantine, Luke, Michelle, O'Mara, Erin, Iuzzini, Jonathan, Jackson, Lydia Eckstein, Cai, Huajian and Wu, Quiping (2012) A motivational hierarchy within: primacy of the individual self, relational self, or collective self? Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, (5), pp. 997-1013. (doi:10.1016/j.jesp.2012.03.009).

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e-pub ahead of print date: 19 March 2012
Published date: September 2012
Keywords: self, motivation, culture


Local EPrints ID: 340946
ISSN: 0022-1031
PURE UUID: aca9a956-e92d-472f-a157-032b11711223

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Date deposited: 06 Jul 2012 15:34
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 05:40

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Author: Lowell Gaertner
Author: Michelle Luke
Author: Erin O'Mara
Author: Jonathan Iuzzini
Author: Lydia Eckstein Jackson
Author: Huajian Cai
Author: Quiping Wu

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