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Winners, losers, insiders, and outsiders: Comparing hierometer and sociometer theories of self-regard

Winners, losers, insiders, and outsiders: Comparing hierometer and sociometer theories of self-regard
Winners, losers, insiders, and outsiders: Comparing hierometer and sociometer theories of self-regard
What evolutionary function does self-regard serve? Hierometer theory, introduced here, provides one answer: it helps individuals navigate status hierarchies, which feature zero-sum contests that can be lost as well as won. In particular, self-regard tracks social status to regulate behavioral assertiveness, augmenting or diminishing it to optimize performance in such contests. Hierometer theory also offers a conceptual counterpoint that helps resolve ambiguities in sociometer theory, which offers a complementary account of self-regard’s evolutionary function. In two large-scale cross-sectional studies, we operationalized theoretically relevant variables at three distinct levels of analysis, namely, social (relations: status, inclusion), psychological (self-regard: self-esteem, narcissism), and behavioral (strategy: assertiveness, affiliativeness). Correlational and mediational analyses consistently supported hierometer theory, but offered only mixed support for sociometer theory, including when controlling for confounding constructs (anxiety, depression). We interpret our results in terms of a broader agency-communion framework.
1664-1078
1-19
Mahadevan, Nikhila
6fdfa44a-a12b-447a-b6d6-be818c4f2d69
Gregg, Aiden
1b03bb58-b3a5-4852-a177-29e4f633b063
Sedikides, Constantine
9d45e66d-75bb-44de-87d7-21fd553812c2
De Waal-Andrews, Wendy
0757cb33-5e29-469b-a90e-45b5333e919a
Mahadevan, Nikhila
6fdfa44a-a12b-447a-b6d6-be818c4f2d69
Gregg, Aiden
1b03bb58-b3a5-4852-a177-29e4f633b063
Sedikides, Constantine
9d45e66d-75bb-44de-87d7-21fd553812c2
De Waal-Andrews, Wendy
0757cb33-5e29-469b-a90e-45b5333e919a

Mahadevan, Nikhila, Gregg, Aiden, Sedikides, Constantine and De Waal-Andrews, Wendy (2016) Winners, losers, insiders, and outsiders: Comparing hierometer and sociometer theories of self-regard Frontiers in Psychology, 7, pp. 1-19.

Record type: Article

Abstract

What evolutionary function does self-regard serve? Hierometer theory, introduced here, provides one answer: it helps individuals navigate status hierarchies, which feature zero-sum contests that can be lost as well as won. In particular, self-regard tracks social status to regulate behavioral assertiveness, augmenting or diminishing it to optimize performance in such contests. Hierometer theory also offers a conceptual counterpoint that helps resolve ambiguities in sociometer theory, which offers a complementary account of self-regard’s evolutionary function. In two large-scale cross-sectional studies, we operationalized theoretically relevant variables at three distinct levels of analysis, namely, social (relations: status, inclusion), psychological (self-regard: self-esteem, narcissism), and behavioral (strategy: assertiveness, affiliativeness). Correlational and mediational analyses consistently supported hierometer theory, but offered only mixed support for sociometer theory, including when controlling for confounding constructs (anxiety, depression). We interpret our results in terms of a broader agency-communion framework.

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Accepted/In Press date: 23 February 2016
Published date: 30 March 2016

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 391566
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/391566
ISSN: 1664-1078
PURE UUID: 1df1b773-01de-4f9c-b994-97007d448366

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Date deposited: 13 Apr 2016 09:13
Last modified: 30 Aug 2017 22:34

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Contributors

Author: Aiden Gregg
Author: Wendy De Waal-Andrews

University divisions

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