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Three Faces of Identity
Timothy J. Owens,1 Dawn T. Robinson,2 and Lynn Smith-Lovin3
1 Department of Sociology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907; email: email@example.com 2 Department of Sociology, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia 30520; email: firstname.lastname@example.org 3 Department of Sociology, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina 27708; email: email@example.com
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Annu. Rev. Sociol. 2010.36:477-499. Downloaded from www.annualreviews.org by Punjab University, Chd. on 01/24/13. For personal use only.
Annu. Rev. Sociol. 2010. 36:477–99 First published online as a Review in Advance on April 20, 2010 The Annual Review of Sociology is online at soc.annualreviews.org This article’s doi: 10.1146/annurev.soc.34.040507.134725 Copyright c 2010 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved 0360-0572/10/0811-0477$20.00
self, group, situation, social movement
We review three traditions in research on identity. The ﬁrst two traditions, which stress (a) the internalization of social positions and their meanings as part of the self structure and (b) the impact of cultural meanings and social situations on actors’ identities, are closely intertwined. The third, the burgeoning literature on collective identity, has developed quite independently of the ﬁrst two and focuses more on group-level processes. Unlike previous reviews of identity, which have focused on the sources of internalized identity (e.g., role relationship, group membership, or category descriptor), we focus here on the theoretical mechanisms underlying theories of identity. We organize our review by highlighting whether those mechanisms are located in the individual’s self-structure, in the situation, or in the larger sociopolitical context. We especially attempt to draw connections between the social psychological literature on identity processes and the distinct, relatively independent literature on collective identity.
Most reviews of research on identity organize their presentation around the sources of the identity (e.g., Thoits & Virshup 1997, Owens 2003). Identities that guide social action can come from role relationships, afﬁliation with social groups, identiﬁcation with social categories, or personal narratives. Here, we take a different tack. We highlight the theoretical processes that are the central mechanisms in the major treatments of identity. These theoretical mechanisms operate across the identities that come from the sources listed above. We ﬁrst draw a distinction between identity theories that focus on internalization of social positions within a self-structure and those that focus on how consensual, cultural identity meanings are implemented within situations that evoke them. The former theories (e.g., Stryker’s and Burke’s Identity Theory) focus on how stable, internalized aspects of social identities are formed and how they affect behavior as the social actor moves from one situation to the next. Implicitly, these internalization theories assume a socialization process through which repeated social interactions lead to the development of personalized identity meanings; these meanings then become incorporated into a stable, trans-situational self-concept. The latter theories (e.g., Tajfel’s Social Identity Theory and Heise’s Affect Control Theory) emphasize how social contexts elicit certain identities and shape their meanings. These theories focus on how consensual cultural meanings associated with identities are imported by actors into local interactions and how situational environments shape the localized meanings of the situationally relevant identities. The situation and the culture within which it is embedded are more central than any internalized aspect of the actor. After developing this (somewhat subtle) distinction between personal, internalized identity theories and situational, culturally based identity theories, we then examine a literature that places the concept of identity at the group level. Cerulo (1997) reviewed this literature on collective identity, emphasizing
Annu. Rev. Sociol. 2010.36:477-499. Downloaded from www.annualreviews.org by Punjab University, Chd. on 01/24/13. For personal use only.
its roots in classic sociological constructs like Durkheim’s collective consciousness, Marx’s class consciousness, Weber’s Verstehen, and Tonnies’s Gemeinscaft. Here, we draw out the connections between this fast-growing literature (located primarily in the study of politics, social movements, and culture) and the more social psychological theories of identity in the microsociological literature (see Owens & Aronson 2000, Stryker et al. 2000). Since the collective identity literature only ﬂeetingly refers to the more social psychological treatments, we attempt to identify areas where those connections can enrich both subﬁelds. Before reviewing our three faces of the identity literature, we illustrate how the concept of identity is nested in the broader concepts of self and self-concept. Identity occupies an interesting position vis-` a-vis these broader concepts. It is both a nested component of the more general self-structures, yet also refers to social positions that exist outside the individual actor that are available to be ascertained, enacted, and potentially internalized. This dualism motivates the organization of our review.
SELF, SELF-CONCEPT, AND IDENTITY: NESTED CONCEPTS
For theorists who emphasize the internalized nature of identity within the context of a stable self-structure, the concept of identity is nested within the more inclusive concepts of the self and the self-concept. As speciﬁed by Mead (1934), the self is a phenomenon of the human mind born out of reﬂexive action, stemming primarily from a person’s interactions with others. Mead especially stressed the ability to imagine oneself from the standpoint of another person. The self consists of two components: the “I” and the “me” (Mead 1934). The “I” (or subject) is the dynamic, novel, spontaneous aspect of the self that constitutes the individual as knower and actor. The “me” (or object) is all the learned perspectives a person takes toward him- or herself and the attitudes that the “I” assumes toward one’s own person, especially when taking the role of the other. The vast
role-based identity. departmental afﬁliations. It denotes a unique individual with self-descriptions drawn from one’s own biography and singular constellation of experiences. The third component of Rosenberg’s self-concept is the focus of our review here: identity. category-based identity. or tall. www.1 considers self-descriptive. Pat Smith’s spouse. We deﬁne role-identity as a social position a person holds in a larger social structure.annualreviews. Rosenberg (1979) deﬁned self-concept as the totality of a speciﬁc person’s thoughts and feelings toward him. soldiers are identiﬁed and differentiated from other soldiers by their names. I was born in Robeson County Hospital at 3:14 PM. diabetic. my mother had a cousin named Edna. Chd. they often correspond to group or categorical identities as described below. deaf.” They deﬁned individual identity as selfideas abstracted from one’s biographical details and framed in terms of broader social categories such as working class. it is social and institutional in origin. Identities based on role relationships are the most central in the theories that stress internalization of identity meaning into the self-structure. deﬁned here as the social classiﬁcation of an individual into a category of one (Rosenberg 1979). p.or herself as an object of reﬂection. They also. These distinctions are created and organized by the institutions within which they occur. it becomes part of one’s self-concept. Midwesterner. which includes the self-concept and the identities that are incorporated into it. When such abstracted self-categorizations are internalized. Physical characteristics include one’s external attributes such as being obese. one’s personal identity information is the basis for one’s other identities.36:477-499. 65). shaping their internalization into the self-concept. Although personal identity consists of unique identiﬁers and an individual narrative. As such. and abilities such as athletic skill. These physical characteristics become sociologically interesting when they are also incorporated into a person’s self-image and thus have the potential to shape one’s behavior or one’s social and psychological well-being.majority of work in sociology is on the “me” aspect of the self. Personal identity is the most elementary type of identity.annualreviews. I drove the school bus during my junior year in high school. physical characteristics. including attitudes such as liberalism. Once the self emerges in the human organism. or progressive. have an external character that inﬂuences how others respond to us. and capacity to reproduce themselves. Because it is selfdescriptive and internalized. snowbird. As individualized as it is. ranks. I served in Patton’s Third Army during World War II. resistance to change. 2010. 15–17): self-referring dispositions. Sociol. on 01/24/13. and serial numbers.org • Three Faces of Identity 479 . 1 Here we adopt Stryker’s (2008) deﬁnition of social structure as socially patterned interactions and relationships noted for their regularity. no stable social relationships could be constructed” and no other identities could be formed (McCall & Simmons 1966. Role-identities are predicated on recurrent interactions between role Annu. of course.org by Punjab University. Self-referring dispositions denote the abstract categories people develop over their life courses and then use to shape their response tendencies. Rev. a nascent self-concept soon follows. The self-concept (or the “me”) can be thought to consist of three broad classes of individual attributes (Rosenberg 1979. We distinguish between these individuated narratives in personal identities and what Thoits & Virshup (1997) termed “individual identity. and enacts in a role relationship with at least one other person (Thoits 1995). traits such as altruism. and the institutions from which their highest degree was awarded. and identities. For personal use only. and group membership–based identity. ranks. academics by their names. values such as patriotism. Thoits & Virshup (1997) refer to these elements as one’s individual identity because they represent ways to differentiate oneself from others (as opposed to representing communalities with others through roles or group membership). Downloaded from www. Examples include: I am Roy Smith. There are four key sources of identity characterizations: personal or individual identity. pp. “If an individual could not be recognized from one occasion to another as the same person.
role-identity entailed the “character and the role that an individual devises for himself as an occupant of a particular social position.org by Punjab University.. In particular. but is likely reinforced by interactions within mosques or ethnically identiﬁed churches. The distinction between the two bases is blurred because of the homophilous structure of interactions (McPherson et al. personal/individual. Burke 2004). Foote (1951. the distinc480 Owens Annu. being an Arab American may be an identity that comes from a category of people.. Our summary of these bases on which identities are formed makes clear why we choose to organize this review around theoretical mechanisms and the distinct intellectual traditions that they create. Sociol. The theories covered in this section are Role-Identity Theory (McCall & Simmons 1966). Rev.. rather than the more common classiﬁcation around the source of identity (e. however. Identity Theory (Stryker 1968. tion among the sources is blurry and has little relationship to how theorists believe that identities organize and motivate action within social contexts (Smith-Lovin 2007. and other culturally meaningful group activities. on 01/24/13.” including “his imaginative view of himself as he likes to think of himself being and acting as an occupant of that position” (p. However. one has no individuality apart from identity. identities are elements of both the social structure and the individual self-structures that internalize them. 1980). social category based. In this section. THEORIES EMPHASIZING INTERNALIZED ROLE-IDENTITY MEANINGS One has no identity apart from society. ethnic neighborhood enclaves. Second. and Identity Control Theory (Burke 1991). Arab or American) or on actual membership in a bounded. Downloaded from www. 67. role based. p. in structured role relationships. Before turning to these aspects of identities theories. or counter (detective-criminal) (e. group based). Weinstein et al. Cooley 1902). 21) The fact that we internalize how others see us is a core insight of classic symbolic interaction (Mead 1934. whether complementary (teacher-pupil). 2001. 1995. sociological researchers have focused on how the social positions that people occupy become stable. internalized aspects of their self-concepts. individuated nature of identity meanings. Identity Accumulation Theory (Thoits 1983). So. While individuals may incorporate meanings associated by social positions and distinctions into their view of themselves. 1966).g.g. we begin with a review of the more traditional theories that emphasize the internalization of identity meanings into the self-structure. Hogg et al.36:477-499. Chd. even those identities that arise from social structural positions. interconnected social group (e. we examine the class of theories that emphasize identities that are attached to and internalized by individuals.annualreviews. McCall & Simmons (1966) tended to ascribe more individual volition to the crafting of one’s role-identity than do most identity theorists. some theories of identity operate at levels other than the self-structure.partners and provide the self with meaning because they carry recognized role expectations. The two ﬁnal bases of identity are formed by similarities that we see between ourselves and others. —Nelson N.g.. For personal use only. Their conceptualization illustrates clearly the internalized. 2006): We are much more likely to interact with those actors with whom we share salient characteristics. this is true of the identity theories that emphasize situational or contextual elements (our second section here) and the literature on collective identity (our third section). Therefore. but not necessarily. emphasis in the original).g. a Girl Scout or a member of Earth First). competing (union negotiator–business executive). the menu from which they choose to do so is created by a larger social environment. 2010. First. rather than the role relationships with another actor. To McCall & Simmons. Identities can be based on perceived membership in a socially meaningful category (e. · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . At least since Foote’s (1951) classic article on identiﬁcation as a basis for motivation. particularly.
Speciﬁcally. 21). role-identities inﬂuence people’s everyday lives by serving as their primary source of personal action plans. In this case. and their identities give their behavior meaning and purpose.org by Punjab University. Both McCall & Simmons (1966) and Stryker (1968) attempted to link the structural-functional insights about role relationships and their functions in larger sociology that dominated the mainstream sociology of the day with the dynamic.annualreviews. Foote (1951) attempted to clarify role theory by using a social psychology of motivation that both rejected biological determinism (“the person impelled from within”) and cultural determinism (“the person driven from without”) (p. Through identiﬁcation. The result was a remarkably fruitful theoretical tradition that grew out of these two similar perspectives on identity. where a role-identity’s prominence reﬂects the relative value it has for his or her overall conception of one’s ideal self. For personal use only. to be a distinguished professor. idiosyncrasy.2 In this way. Because people have multiple and often competing role-identities. Chd. They argue that a person’s various role-identities get organized into a hierarchy of prominence. because people also perform roles that are attached to particular identities. and impulsiveness with behavior constrained by social convention occurs through a dialog between the “I” and the “me” bounded by the broad dictates of one’s role-identity. on 01/24/13. This commingling of individuality. we brieﬂy address motivation as it generally applies to these internalization theories. the role/identity nexus is also an important ingredient in motivation and choice. a loving mother. an important theoretical problem in McCall & Simmons’s theory is to explain which role-identities people value most and will thus attempt to perform.36:477-499. Foote’s theory of situated motivation is based upon symbolic interactionist notions of language and identiﬁcation. Prominence itself is predicated on many factors.before discussing the speciﬁc theories. 2010.g.org • Three Faces of Identity 481 . Role-Identity Theory McCall & Simmons (1966) deﬁned roleidentity in dramaturgical language as the 2 Their concept of ideal self. 76–80. people must assess the degree of commitment they have to a particular role-identity and. pp. Downloaded from www. Two inﬂuential mid-range identity theories were developed in the 1960s to represent the ways in which structural role positions and their internalizations guided choices that actors make in social interaction. the very notion of identity in symbolic interactionism connotes an intimate linkage between self and role (Burke & Tully 1977) such that human beings are confronted regularly with choices between alternative commitments and actions. www. However. commitment signiﬁes how deeply a person stakes who he or she is by virtue of his or her roleidentity and its performance. they saw role-identities as stemming from the preferred perceptions that one has of oneself as one occupies various social positions. one’s prominence hierarchy is equivalent to one’s ideal self (McCall & Simmons 1966.annualreviews. language is central to motivation because it helps shape behavior by enabling individuals to meaningfully understand and label their past actions in order to formulate present and future outcomes. This conceptualization is directly relevant to James’s (1890) deﬁnition of self-esteem as the ratio of one’s perceived success in a particular role-identity to one’s desired level of success. Indeed. how much their self-esteem is bound to its successful activation.. yet within the overall requirements and restrictions of their social position(s). Sociol. processual insights about self that dominated microsociological thinking. which traces back to Horney (1945). by extension. which also come and go during one’s life course. character that individuals devise for themselves when occupying speciﬁc social positions. 264). People have multiple identities. a successful businessperson). Rev. Annu. And as discussed earlier. The theory has a view of people capable of creativity and improvisation in the performance of their roles.or herself (e. is part wish and part obligation with regard to an individual’s most personal aspirations and wants for him. First. That is. people appropriate and commit to particular identities. Nearly six decades ago.
Finally. More recently. race..g. They argued that the signiﬁcance of affective commitment for Hispanics was heightened by the family’s particular importance for this group.. gender.. Chd. Downloaded from www. In an early empirical test of the theory. commitment to particular role-identities (i. the higher is the probability of its being invoked in an interactional situation that allows some agency or choice. Note that Stryker’s use of the term “commitment” is more multidimensional and less psychological than the use of the same concept label in McCall & Simmons’s Role-Identity Theory above.. They show that intermediate-level social structures (e. people try to determine how their signiﬁcant others will evaluate and appraise the role when and if it is activated.g. Identity Theory Stryker’s Identity Theory (1968. The proximal-level represents social embeddedness in multiple networks of social relations (e.. Interactional commitment is the extensiveness of the interactions a person has in a social network through a particular identity (e. coursework versus dating) was key. 2008) in her formulation of Identity Accumulation Theory.annualreviews. Identity Theory sees a multifaceted self composed of multiple identities arranged hierarchically in an identity salience structure.. 2003) drew heavily on Role-Identity Theory (McCall & Simmons 1966) and Identity Theory (Stryker 1968. when considering their ideal selves vis-` a-vis particular role-identities. though important.e. Rev. The salience itself is based on two dimensions of one’s commitment to the identity: interactional and affective. Sociol. Bandura 1977). The more salient an identity. socioeconomic status) had the least impact on commitment to a particular identity. For personal use only. as a sign of the importance of reﬂected appraisals. 1980. her description of the importance that multiple role-identities can have for a person’s psychological and emotional well-being. number of workmates who are also one’s relatives). Finally. and volunteerism). Third. but only behavioral commitment was predictive of family-identity salience for Anglos and blacks. Affective commitment is a person’s emotional investment in relationships premised on the identity (e.g. how emotionally close others in the role relationship are to the individual).. individuals assess the rewards they may or may not have received from the prior activation of a roleidentity. 2010. Identity Accumulation Theory Thoits (1983. 1986. (2005) recently discussed an ongoing problem in Identity Theory—how multilevel social structures facilitate or constrain one’s opportunity for. large-scale stratiﬁcation systems (e..36:477-499.org by Punjab University. Proximallevel social structures. Serpe (1987) showed that college students’ commitments to their student-related identities at Time 1 impacted those identities’ saliences 482 Owens at Time 2.e. Fourth. family. the degree of structural freedom students had in choosing one role-identity over another (i. Annu. the number of persons one interacts with based on the identity). on 01/24/13. whereas Time 2 student-identity salience impacted contemporaneous commitment to that identity.g.Second.g.g. Stryker et al. Her theory asserts that multiple role-identities can be psychological resources that help reduce · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . a notion consistent with social learning theory (e. work. Owens & Serpe (2003) found that behavioral and affective commitment were both signiﬁcantly related to family identity salience for Hispanics. This pattern suggested that commitment precedes salience. we only review its basic form here (see also Owens 2003). 1980. 2008) has been the dominant perspective on self and identity within structural symbolic interactionism for the past four decades. and the strength of. Only situations involving choice showed the pattern. Since Stryker (2008) recently offered a focused treatment of his theory in the Annual Review of Sociology. had less impact than intermediate structures. neighborhood or school) inﬂuenced commitment most by fostering ingroup identity-based relationships. However. people evaluate how their prior actions generally comport with their role-identity performances and how much they are living up to their ideal selves.
As Ahrens & Ryff (2006) point out. roles give individuals structure and organization by answering the question: What should I do? By extension. Underpinning Identity Accumulation Theory are two key assumptions.org • Three Faces of Identity 483 . Burke’s (1991. and age groups is still needed. She found that role accumulation (spouse. Identity Control Theory Whereas Stryker’s Identity Theory focused on identity choices.annualreviews.emotional distress (depression) and foster global self-esteem in complex selves. Serpe (1987) and Thoits (2003) may offer an important piece missing in Identity Accumulation Theory: assessing the degree of choice people have in enacting their many role-identities. multiple role-identities provide the person with an orientation toward life situations that help foster well-being. and community volunteer) beneﬁted older Americans’ mental health. Few. Conversely. ethnic.annualreviews. The ﬁrst. Brook et al.org by Punjab University. Jackson (1997) added an important status dimension involving race and ethnicity to Identity Accumulation Theory and showed that the multiple role-identities were associated with lower depression and greater happiness among non-Hispanic white and Mexican American men and women but not African Americans. their subjective importance to the person. Chd. differences in the way salience and commitment are operationalized help explain empirical inconsistencies in the relationship between multiple role-identities and well-being. including the work above on Identity Accumulation Theory.36:477-499. but any role beyond being either a spouse or a parent had no impact on well-being for older Japanese. such as social connections. A common thread running through many studies of multiple identities. power. (2008) cited other studies indicating that multiple role-identities can actually increase or prolong depression when role-identity demands are incompatible with other behavioral expectations or when the roleidentity claims too much of a person’s time and drains her energy. 2000). and how harmoniously they interact with each other. Kikuzawa (2006) added a person’s location in the life course to race/ethnicity in a cross-cultural study of depression levels for Annu. Burke developed an elaboration of the theory to specify how internalized meanings guided action after an identity was adopted within an institutional context (Stryker & Burke 2000). For example. the better the outcome. is that identities provide individuals with meaning and purpose by answering the question: Who am I? Second. The more options one has to obtain these resources. If multiple role-identities are a resource. the mother role and worker role are more constraining because they offer less choice in enacting than the freedom to choose the PTA role and church choir role. Brook et al. or both (Barnett & Hyde 2001). is the importance of Stryker’s Identity Theory in the framing of the empirical research. Theoretical understanding of these varying patterns in different racial. Americans and Japanese age 60 and over. Even among those who try to hew closely to Stryker’s theoretical conceptualizations. however. Sachs-Ericsson & Ciarlo 2000. fewer physical health problems ( Janzen & Muhajarine 2003). (2008) claimed that the key to understanding the difference between positive and negative beneﬁts of multiple roles is the mediating effect of positive or negative emotions on the interactions between the number of identities a person holds. more roles also are associated with beneﬁcial individual resources. Numerous recent empirical studies support the hypothesis linking multiple role-identities to lower levels of psychological distress (Kikuzawa 2006. on 01/24/13. then the most consequential for well-being should be the identities a person has some freedom to choose. Burke built on the work www. an essential aspect of symbolic interactionism. Sociol. Wethington et al. Downloaded from www. parent. Rev. actually employ Stryker’s conceptions of role interactional and affective commitment in their empirical analyses. 2010. For personal use only. Burke & Reitzes 1991) theoretical developments are often known as Identity Control Theory to distinguish them from Stryker’s more structural focus on commitment and identity enactment. and prestige.
Consistent with the other internalization identity theories summarized above.36:477-499. Burke & Stets (1999) show how self-processes can inﬂuence social structure. 79–82. Annu. a cybernetic control process balances any identity discrepancies that may arise when a particular identity standard (the internalized meanings of self in role. More recently. Identity Control Theory is thoroughly reviewed in Burke & Stets (2009). They studied taskoriented groups of four people (two women and two men) when leadership is conferred by a higher. but those who are in · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . In one of the initial statements of the theory. This emphasis on a larger structure brings the theory closer to the situational/cultural emphasis of the theories reviewed in the next section.g. Among their ﬁndings are that female leaders (who were legitimated by the experimenter when the group was formed) and males (who were not legitimated) both had higher levels of identity veriﬁcation than others. group. they can vary in quality. and Legitimacy Theory in an experiment on how gender factors into leader and subordinate identity veriﬁcation. 840. emphasis in the original). 229–33). feedback loop: individuals continually adjust behavior to keep their reﬂected appraisals congruent with their identity standards or references” (p.of Powers (1973) to represent the relationship between internalized identity meanings and perceptions of an interactional situation as a control system or cybernetic feedback loop [Robinson (2007) provides a recent review of control theorizing in sociology]. a “deﬁnition of the situation” is almost always to be found. THEORIES EMPHASIZING CULTURE AND SITUATIONAL CONTEXT Presumably. a feedback process ensues via reﬂected appraisals. 1957. “An identity process. These meaning-sets act as a standard or reference for understanding who one is in a given situation and what are the expectations in order to maintain that identity in the eyes of self and others. depending on the disturbing events. For personal use only. Here we describe only a few studies as exemplars of this research tradition. Sociol. Since actions are generated to reduce discrepancies.annualreviews. “is a continuously operating. It is hypothesized that people behave so as to counter and reduce any discrepancy that arises from interaction. Rev. That is. pp.” according to Burke & Reitzes (1991). This study illustrates an interesting new theme in Identity Control Theory—the relevance of resources to the ability of an actor to verify his or her identity (see Burke & Stets 2009. (2007) combined Identity Control Theory.. Status Characteristics Theory (discussed brieﬂy at the end of the next section). Burke 2004. The dimensions on which meanings vary are assessed in each institutional context and then measured at the level of the individual actor. self-adjusting. Chd. Burke & Stets 2009)]. Identity Control Theory emphasizes the importance of understanding identity not just as a state or trait characteristic of the individual. while Stets & Tsushima (2001) have extended the theory to an examination of the moderating inﬂuence of group-based identities and rolebased identities on how people experience and cope with the potent emotion of anger.org by Punjab University. Burke (1991) posed a challenge to prevailing views of social stress by positing that disruption of the otherwise continuous identity process and the inability to close the gap between disapproving reﬂected appraisals and an identity standard will result in distress. 2010. but as a continuous process of afﬁrmation and reafﬁrmation in social situations. Burke and associates follow mainstream symbolic interactionism by viewing an identity as a set of meanings applied to the self in a social role [although later presentations of the theory explicitly expand its scope to consider identities that come from group or category membership (e. 1975). legitimate authority (the experimenter). Furthermore. Meanings are typically measured using bipolar semantic differential scales (Osgood et al. Burke et al. or category) is compared to the identity’s situated meaning via a comparator. on 01/24/13. Downloaded from www. When an identity is brought into play in an interaction situation. 484 Owens This feature of the theory allows it to describe how actors respond creatively to circumstances other than normal role performances.
1963) emphasized that actors presented themselves to others in a manner that served to maintain certain images. appendix A) for a related discussion]. —Erving Goffman (1974. 1–2) undermined it than with the underlying character of the “self ” that was being presented [see Hochschild (1983. all they do is to assess correctly what the situation ought to be for them and then act accordingly. Rather. and sociological social psychology more generally. showing that the desirability of the situated identity associated with an outcome predicted whether people chose that outcome. they emphasize how the elements of situations in which actors are involved shape their behavioral. Alexander focused initially on relatively simple situations in which actors were assumed to have similar perspectives. We discuss two traditions in sociology and psychology—Affect Control Theory and Social Identity Theory—that conceptualize the sociocultural environment in very different ways. Similar intellectual movements were afoot in psychology. on 01/24/13. even though their society can be said to do so. This tradition of emphasizing the importance of situational context for social action began to develop in its modern form during the 1950s and early 1960s. and cultural elements that lie outside the individual. we shift attention to theories that give priority to situational. using the concept of identity to focus attention on the actor-situation nexus. www.annualreviews. social structural. Rev. he restricted his experimental work to situated activities that met that consensus criterion. Alexander conceptualized situated identities not as properties possessed by persons or as features located in some external environmental structure.the situation ordinarily do not create this deﬁnition. We now move to a review of currently active theories that emphasize the impact of situational and cultural features on social interaction.org by Punjab University. The theories of internalized identity meanings reviewed in the previous section build on the foundational insight of Mead and Cooley that we incorporate the social positions that we occupy into our cognitive image of ourselves as people. often in violation of cognitive dissonance predictions. discussed above. and category memberships are incorporated into the self-image. 2010. theories (and the conceptualizations embedded within them) necessarily simplify reality by focusing on some elements to the exclusion of others. .36:477-499.org • Three Faces of Identity 485 Annu. it was a groundbreaking effort to consider systematically the impact of situational cues on identity occupancy and social conduct ﬂowing from that identity. Sociol. Instead. Building on Heider and Goffman.annualreviews. he replicated a classic cognitive dissonance experiment. as Heider’s (1946. Goffman (1959. and emotional reactions. 1958) Balance Theory drew attention to conﬁgurations of interaction and their implications. summarized in Alexander & Wiley 1981). Chd. the situated identity deﬁned the relationship between an individual and the environment (especially the other actors within it) at a given time. In his most cited study (Alexander & Knight 1971). was published in this period. group memberships. ordinarily. had lost its connection to the structural focus of the larger discipline (Stryker 2008). Although this research tradition is not currently very active. So the theories described here do not reject the idea that social roles. For personal use only. It also pioneered the use of experimental methods in this domain within sociology. empirically testable theory based on this situational focus was Alexander’s Situated Identity Theory (Alexander & Knight 1971. We caution that our categorization here does not imply competition or contradiction. cognitive. Downloaded from www. pp. His Presentation of Self in Everyday Life was concerned more with the interactional presentation of self and how situational context supported or Situated Identity Theory An early attempt to develop a formal. Here. It was partially a response to the sense that symbolic interactionism. Like many situational theories that followed. rather than focus on the intraindividual features of identity in the self-structure that are carried from situation to situation. Instead. Foote’s (1951) inﬂuential theory of situated motivation.
it used Osgood’s work to create a measurement system in which meanings were conceptualized on three dimensions of affective meaning—evaluation (good-bad). Downloaded from www. The search for a new event that. First. For personal use only. The theories differ in their approaches to measurement. the mother slaps the child) to study how the initial meanings of the event elements (a mother. The ﬁrst contrast between the theories is the reference level that is being maintained by the control system in each theory. and later emotions.org by Punjab University. Rev.) to be mapped into the same three-dimensional space. situated meanings for event elements (actor. When social interaction deﬂects meanings away from their stable. Heise combined identity labels and social behaviors into simple event sentences (e. 2007). Affect Control Theory was developed by Heise (1979) by combining two psychological research programs—Osgood’s work on the measurement of affective meaning (Osgood et al. Sociol. Although this theoretical research program is not based in the identity tradition.. potency. status characteristics. Identity Control Theory’s reference level is the internalized Annu. The third element of the theory is the control system. potency (powerful-powerless). The second element of the theory was an empirical framework for describing how events changed the meanings within a situation. setting. They also illustrate the danger of making this categorization seem too rigid. when enacted.We then brieﬂy discuss Status Characteristics Theory. situated meanings back into line with the stable. which shares many elements with Burke’s Identity Control Theory. nonverbal behaviors. the subtle differences between the theories are an excellent demonstration of the distinction that we make here between personal and social theories of identity. Both theories drew directly on Powers’s (1973) insight that much of human processing of stimuli from the environment was described by a control system rather than a direct translation of inputs into outputs. and object-person) and the culturally given reference values for each of those elements. · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . Here we emphasize only the differences in personal versus situational focus that are key to our discussion. culturally determined values. Using 486 Owens a paradigm developed by Gollob. we begin our discussion of the more situational/cultural conception of identity with Affect Control Theory (Heise 1979. Chd. 1975) and Gollob’s (1968) work on impression formation—with Powers’s new ideas about control systems. The contrast between Affect Control Theory and the more recently developed Identity Control Theory is described extensively in Smith-Lovin & Robinson (2006).g. by the summed absolute differences between transient. its ﬁndings have some important connections to the phenomena that we explore here. will minimize that deﬂection then becomes a search for a three-number proﬁle: the evaluation. 1957. cultural meanings. and emotional response. Deﬂection of meanings is deﬁned mathematically. Affect Control Theory To make the connection between the internalized and situational/cultural conceptions of identity clear. the object-person at whom the action is directed. But even given this shared control imagery.36:477-499. and activity (livelyquiet). and activity of a behavior (what could X do next to remedy the situation?). one can search a cultural “dictionary” of affective meanings to ﬁnd qualitative labels that ﬁt the affectively appropriate response. The resulting theory had three elements. Measuring meaning on just these three dimensions missed some nuances but allowed all the elements of a social event (the actor. behavior. on 01/24/13. a new label for the actor (what kind of a person would do such a thing?). formalization. etc. Affect Control Theory proposes that actors try to create new events to bring the transitory. slapping someone. adapted from Powers (1973). a child) would be transformed by their combination in the event (what do you think— on the three dimensions of affective meaning— of a mother who has slapped a child?). the social action. which it shares with Identity Control Theory.annualreviews. Once the proﬁle is found. or a new label for the objectperson (what kind of a person would deserve to have that happen to them?). 2010.
they do so by agentically entering situations that place them in different identities and lead to the experience of self-relevant situated meanings. make clear that the boundary between personal and social identity theories is indistinct and everchanging. meanings are assumed to be quite stable and acquired through long-term socialization processes from the culture at large. Affect Control Theory had no real conceptualization of a stable. as well as self-consistency theories from psychology. the theories differ somewhat in their assumptions about the stability of meaning. Having discussed how two very similar theories differ in their emphasis on personal versus social/cultural focus. much of this research program looks at how these meanings shift as a result of interactions over a period of sustained interactions (e. will resolve the deﬂection at the level of the self.. Most extreme dislocations of meaning that cannot be resolved behaviorally are resolved through relabeling a person or action. Rogalin. personal identity theories by concentrating on how people maintain a stable selfimage over a series of situational encounters. then actors seek out other possible identities in situations that.. For personal use only.g. Social Identity Theory www. Recent developments. and situated action.org by Punjab University. one series of studies examines how emotion displays (which signal transient meanings and deﬂections from identity) lead to labeling after a deviant act (e. First. D. 1994). Since Affect Control Theory focuses on the situation. organized self-structure during the ﬁrst three decades of its development (Heise 1979. Second. Downloaded from www. Since both theories share the core control imagery of Powers (1973). Since Identity Control Theory focuses on personal. Affect Control Theory explicitly considers how a situation in which meanings have been disrupted can be repaired by any of the actors that are copresent in a situation. identities.g. In this case. Therefore. A second difference ﬂows directly from the ﬁrst. Rev. Work that is more distinctive to this theoretical tradition looks at features other than the central actor.L. Smith-Lovin & Heise 1988. 1999).. the assumption is that people operate to maintain their own identities. In Affect Control Theory.T.annualreviews. In Affect Control Theory. actions.meanings that an actor incorporates into the self-structure. . on 01/24/13. when self-identity meanings are deﬂected in one situation (and if those deﬂections cannot easily be behaviorally resolved). Robinson et al.org • Three Faces of Identity 487 Annu. In fact.g. internalized identity meanings. we now turn to a perspective that focuses on how contextual elements affect self-meanings that are derived from category memberships. 2010. however. MacKinnon & Heise (2010) develop a control theory of the self that is based on Affect Control Theory. the identities of others. this new identity theory clearly moves back into the realm of internalized. when maintained. In personal identity theories. much research that supports Affect Control Theory could support either theory (e. SmithLovin (2007) reported an experiential sampling study that found we actually spend most of our time in such noncore identities. Robinson. Another looks at how people work to manage the identities of others. although it uses the mathematical control system from Affect Control Theory. In Affect Control Theory. MacKinnon 1994). and behavior settings (Smith-Lovin 1979). L. actors use a “cultural theory of people”— the collection of categories and logical implications among them—as a menu of possibilities for self-identiﬁcation and understanding others. Smith-Lovin.36:477-499. Finally. the actions of others are explicitly considered as possible remedies for meaningdeﬂecting events. when they have a choice? MacKinnon and Heise give a more formal answer to this question than Stryker. but they are deﬁnitely building in his domain. For example. The theory has two elements. it was a theory about roles. even those who were not involved in the deﬂecting event. Sociol. submitted manuscript). Chd.annualreviews. even at some cost to their own self-image (C. people try to maintain meanings associated with the entire situation—their own identities. Stets & Burke 2005). Notice the similarity to the basic question posed (and answered) by Stryker’s Identity Theory: How do people choose which identities to enact. Robinson & Smith-Lovin 1992. it often deals with identities that are not core to an actor’s self-structure.
than it is for achieved categorizations (e.org by Punjab University. educational degree status.. identity salience is a stable part of the self—a result of commitment (frequent and affectively valued relationships to others). depending on the potential for mobility—it is stronger for immutable ascribed categorizations (e. see also Hogg 1992). The strength of this tendency varies.annualreviews. the relevant group contrasts within that environment that determine what dimensions of self-perception. 263) noted that Tajfel’s theory put more emphasis on social context for identity and their meanings. In Stryker’s Identity Theory. the emphasis is on category memberships (e.g. it is the social environment and. When a category membership becomes salient (relevant to the social context). Rev. whether it is competitive or status-ranked). Therefore. Stets & Burke 2000) have emphasized points of overlap between Social Identity Theory in psychology and Identity Theory in sociology. in particular. I might have different meanings for those categorical identities. 2010. Notice that in Social Identity Theory. However. being a Muslim or an Australian). Turner & Tajfel 1982. on 01/24/13. (1995.. Unlike the control theories of identity reviewed above.g. Therefore. the concept of salience has a very different meaning from that in Identity Theory. self-perception and conduct become in-group normative. Depending on the nature of the relationship between the groups (e. In Social Identity Theory. For personal use only. Social Identity Theory assumes a self-enhancement motive. If I think of myself as an American and I am in a social context where the British are my out-group. 3 Other treatments (e. membership on sports teams). It was further developed with Turner in the 1970s and 1980s (Tajfel & Turner 1979. After self-categorization occurs in the context of a situation. Social Identity Theory sees social actors as having multiple identities that get activated by different social contexts. But if I am (still) an American and I am comparing myself to an Italian. whereas the sociological Identity Theory focused on self-structure for motivating the 488 Owens · Robinson · Smith-Lovin .deals with cognitions about categories of ingroups and out-groups (Tajfel & Turner 1979). Here. I am a Southerner. Perceptions of other groups become out-group stereotypical.36:477-499. I might be an American in Paris. It is something that actors carry from situation to situation. Downloaded from www. and in the American Sociological Association. gender. I might think of myself as orderly and institution-upholding (as opposed to the unsettled.g. it would seem to be the prototype of an intrapersonal identity theory.. Sociol. fractious Italians). the mechanisms described by the theory actually center on the impact of the social environment on those cognitions. Chd. I might think of my American self as egalitarian (as opposed to the class-oriented British).. depending on the salient out-group at the time.) inﬂuence the content of the operative meanings for the in-group (i. And in each of these venues. and intergroup competition/ discrimination occur. the beliefs about the degree of mobility and social change possible. situated self meanings) and the out-group (stereotypes and discrimination).. Hogg et al. salience is conceptualized as the impact of the situation on self-categorizations. etc. especially if the higher status is within reach. I am a professor and a social psychologist..g. otherstereotyping. race. The hypotheses of Social Identity Theory typically focus on how variations in the social situation (the relevant out-groups.g. Like all the theories we review here. In comparing Tajfel’s Social Identity Theory and Stryker’s Identity Theory. but at a Civil War reenactment. We emphasize those contextual elements of the theory in our description of it.and otherperceptions can shift toward different types of perceptual discrimination. nationality) Annu.3 Social Identity Theory Social Identity Theory has its roots in work by Tajfel during the late 1950s and 1960s on the social factors that inﬂuence perception.e. placing this theory in the situational/cultural category for our treatment here. self. actors are motivated to make comparisons that favor the in-group (and sometimes disparage the out-group). p.
org • Three Faces of Identity 489 . 1999). we turn to a theory that is not considered an identity theory at all—the Status Characteristics Theory branch of the expectation states theoretical research program.. Stets 1997.36:477-499. including the lower-expectation ones). Sociol. and are perceived (either implicitly or explicitly) to be relevant to expectations about task performance.annualreviews. not by an internal self-structure. a review of this literature a decade ago (Cerulo 1997) barely mentions social psychological theories. For example. but in the exchange tradition (Correll & Ridgeway 2003). COLLECTIVE IDENTITY The solidarity that derives from similarities is at its maximum when the collective consciousness completely envelopes our total consciousness. Rashotte & Smith-Lovin 1997. coinciding with it at every point. For personal use only. avoiding negative emotions that come with lack of identity maintenance.org by Punjab University. Having reviewed the systematically developed theories of identity and action that emphasize internalized meanings and situational/cultural elements. we try to summarize the differing emphasis of this substantial literature on collective identity and to draw out connections between its treatment of identity and the social psychological literature reviewed above.annualreviews. we now turn to a body of literature on collective identity that has a very different emphasis. Both theories posit that largely consensual cultural meanings are imported into a situation to organize action within that setting. respectively. on 01/24/13. enactment of identities and long-term social experience for the internalized meanings. jointly rewarded task orientation— which nulliﬁes the exchange mechanism— makes it closer to a situationally based identity theory than the status-exchange theory of its origins. Downloaded from www. Cast et al. gender. When people work together on a task and will be rewarded jointly for its successful completion (the scope conditions of the theory). Here. therefore. given these meanings. Indeed. Stets & Harrod 2004. Chd. race) become important within a situation when those characteristics are evaluated by self and others. Researchers in both the Affect Control Theory and the Identity Control Theory traditions have used the theory to discuss how status meanings organize action within social situations (Ridgeway & Smith-Lovin 1994. The fact that Status Characteristics Theory is frequently now applied outside of its scope conditions of collaborative. Stets & Harrod (2004) ﬁnd that actors in higher-status positions have interactional resources that allow them to sustain their identity meanings within situations. the similarities between Status Characteristics Theory and Affect Control Theory (Ridgeway & Smith-Lovin 1994). Actors’ characteristics (e.Annu. The actors for whom task expectations are the highest are given action opportunities. Status Characteristics Theory The intellectual roots of Status Characteristics Theory are not in symbolic interaction. Rev. We include the theory in this review not to cover all of its rich contributions to microsociology. cultural meanings) that are relevant are determined by the situation. however. Both theories suggest that the identities (and. To end our section on situational/cultural theories of identity. And both provide a generative account of how action unfolds in the situation. and have other interactional advantages. 2010. Note. —Emile Durkheim (1893) The sociological literature on collective identity is less organized around distinct midrange www. The theory’s core mechanism is that group members will exchange deference within the group interaction for the high-expectation actors’ contributions to the task (resulting in higher beneﬁts for all group members.g. actors are motivated to assess who will contribute most effectively to the task completion. but to highlight the elements of the theory that deal with the relationships among identity and interaction. receive positive evaluations. The increasing use of the theory outside of its scope conditions by identity researchers justiﬁes its placement here.
170) deﬁne collective identity as the “shared deﬁnition of a group that derives from members’ common interests. Melucci 1989. on 01/24/13. Chd.org by Punjab University. 1994. Prentice et al. and observe one another’s parallel emotions and collateral behaviors. social movements theory. binding us to those with commonalities of interest and providing a social glue that can serve as a foundation for mobilizing joint action. p. Collective Identity and the New Social Movements A concern with understanding what mobilizes joint action motivates much of sociology’s attention to collective identity. and solidarity. New social movement theory (Larana ˜ et al. Downloaded from www. experience the same reality. Rev. it is a wide-ranging literature coming out of a number of traditions.” Heise argues that when people take on the same identity. 490 Owens Annu. arguing that contemporary movements are less about Marxist-style conﬂict over material interests and more concerned with identity meanings and other symbolic resources. The internal and situational identity processes reviewed in the section above can lead identities to serve as an organizational force. that makes the sociological literature on collective identity distinctive from the microsociological identity literature that we review above. Heise (1998. and cognitive sociology. Collective identity is a central organizing concept in the literature on new social movements.annualreviews. The latter form of attachment is necessary to produce a collective identity. 2010. Nagel (1995. operating at the group level. Turner 1969) juxtaposes modern (post-1960s) movements with earlier social movements.” Most deﬁnitions of collective identity include a notion of identiﬁcation with shared features along with a recognition of shared opportunities and constraints afforded by those features (Melucci 1989).theories than are the literatures on personal identity and situated identity. with faith in others’ commitments to shared purposes. This is closer to what Heise (1998) referred to as empathic solidarity. Rather. We attempt to draw connections between this vibrant literature and the midrange microsociological theories reviewed above. 1994. Sociol. Psychologists working in the social identity and self-categorization theoretical traditions refer to the “collective self ” as nearly interchangeable with “social identity” as used in those theories (Brewer & Gardner 1996) and thus focus largely on its consequences for self-deﬁnition and interpersonal judgment. For example. Turner (1969) related protest participation to identity dynamics and referred to the emerging number of “identity seeking” movements. Collective identities should not be seen as a third type of identity as much as an attempt by this literature to highlight another set of identityrelated dynamics at the group level. or connection to other members of the group/category. p. Consequently. For personal use only. experiences. Taylor & Whittier (1999. Indeed. this section of our review is organized around concepts and process rather than around speciﬁc theoretical traditions. including cultural sociology. 197) deﬁnes empathic solidarity as “a reciprocated sense of merged consciousness and alliance. feminist sociology. a sense of common destiny and empathic connection arises. Later researchers reﬁned the notion of collective identity as a group-level · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . (1994) speciﬁcally distinguish between group identities based on common bonds (attachments to individual group members) and those based on common identities (attachments directly to the group or category). Offe 1985. Both internalized identities and situational identities can underpin the sense of connection and shared destiny requisite for collective identiﬁcation. The identity dynamics described by Turner focused on personal identities and the identiﬁcation/disidentiﬁcation with various groups.36:477-499. It is this phenomenon. Sociological use of the term collective identity focuses more on its consequences for mobilizing joint action. p. but the concept goes far beyond that. is an essential component of collective identity.” A sense of we-ness. 21) refers to the collective variant of ethnic identity as “a dialectic between internal identiﬁcation and external ascription.
but it is group consciousness that gives signiﬁcance to a collectivity (Taylor & Whittier 1999. According to Lamont’s research. More speciﬁcally. and sexuality can sometimes vacillate between taking on the goal of deconstructing boundaries (e.phenomenon (Melucci 1989. Lamont (1992) offered an in-depth analysis of the symbolic boundaries people draw when categorizing self and others in her comparative study of upper-middle-class culture in France and the United States. Competition and Contact Two opposing logics guide the theoretical literature regarding the impact of external forces on the salience of collective identity boundaries and the strength of collective identity bonds. Nearly a decade ago. One is that direct competition strengthens group boundaries and mobilizes collective identity-based conﬂict. Again. other nonproﬁt workers than to other social and cultural specialists who were dependent on proﬁtmaking.g. Rev. However. French social and cultural specialists draw stronger cultural boundaries. revealing how identity processes are deeply related to all aspects of social movements. In contrast. Lamont found that boundary-drawing activities in the United States vary with the degree to which they are embedded in occupational structures that are dependent on proﬁt-making. and (c) negotiation of intergroup and intragroup meanings. Her work suggests that boundary work around collective identities operates multidimensionally and that the relative prominence of those dimensions can vary between cultural settings (echoing some themes in Social Identity Theory). this signiﬁcance takes the form of what Morris (1999) calls oppositional consciousness. maintain. this work picks up some themes emphasized in the sociocultural/situational theories of identity in microsociology. Boundaries identify who is and is not a member of a collective. on 01/24/13. Polletta & Jasper (2001) reviewed the literature on collective identity and social movements. the increase in www.annualreviews. including (a) movement emergence. Lorber 2006) and taking on the goal of ﬁxing the boundaries to mobilize on the basis of them (e.. Gamson (1995) points out that ﬁxed categories are the basis for both oppression and political power. Boundary Work Taylor & Whittier (1999) describe three factors that contribute to the development of a collective identity capable of motivating group-level action: (a) the creation of social boundaries. gender. Her analysis distinguished between three types of symbolic boundaries: moral.. Chd.S. and cultural. The boundary work literature focuses primarily on the strategies and practices that groups use to construct collective identities and to manage the symbolic boundaries around those identities.36:477-499.g. Competition theory (Olzak 1994) argues that when economic and demographic changes lead to a breakdown in labor market segmentation.annualreviews. Sociol. French social and cultural specialists identiﬁed more with the intellectual and cultural boundaries around their vocations and less with the economic aspects. and connected with. while social and cultural specialists in the United States attend more to economic boundaries. Strategies and practices used by collectives to create. 2010. (b) the development and recognition of social criteria that account for a group’s structural position. theorists have also attended to how external structures create and constrain the emergence and salience of collective identities. (c) movement strategy. 2000). Consequently. For personal use only. boundary work regarding collective identities such as race. p. Within this theoretical tradition. U. Annu. and (d) interpretation of outcomes (see Stryker et al. In the case of mobilizing collective consciousness in response to a dominant group or oppressive understanding.org • Three Faces of Identity 491 . and transform cultural categories are collectively referred to as boundary work (Nippert-Eng 2002). (b) recruitment and participation. social and cultural specialists in the nonproﬁt sector felt more similar to. 1994) central to giving a group or category the coherence and energy necessary to mobilize its constituents into collective action. socioeconomic. Jenson 1995).org by Punjab University. Downloaded from www. 179).
cohesive collectives. structural externalities such as successful land claims. These developments facilitated the collective processes (e. When separate Asian ethnic groups are segregated into different occupations. In contrast to the idea that increased interaction and competition foster collective identiﬁcation. the separate ethnic identities remain 492 Owens salient and pan-ethnic collective action is suppressed. boundary work by collectives is not simply a matter of sharpening contrasts between competing groups or emphasizing distinctiveness from a larger oppressive culture. Identity. increase collective identiﬁcation—particularly ethnic identiﬁcation.. layered nature of ethnic identities. At times collective identiﬁcation is a process of crystallizing subgroup boundaries that fractionalize a larger whole. pan-Asian identities are more likely to emerge and mobilize panethnic collective action. increases in federal spending. and Mobilization Close on the heels of renewed attention to the role of identity in social movements has been a revival of interest in how emotions mobilize joint action.g. similarity. consequently. Emotions. 2010. Sociol. Annu. when cultural and economic boundaries overlap.org by Punjab University. but whose intergroup conﬂicts ultimately contributed to the decline of the movement. Green (1999) describes four groups of sectarian evangelical Protestants whose efforts animated the ﬁrst wave of a Christian Right movement. in her study of the emergence of a pan-tribal Native American identity. Nagel (1995). In a study of the relationship between economic competition. Okamoto found that the collective identity boundaries tracked the patterns of occupational segregation: When Asian ethnic groups occupy a shared place in the occupational market. Thus. Occupational segregation increases intragroup interaction relative to intergroup interaction and consequently increases commonality of interests and futures.intergroup interaction and the intensiﬁcation of competition for scarce resources strain intergroup relations and. Soule 1992). cultural division of labor. on the other hand. According to Nagel. Among Native Americans. Okamoto (2003) extended and synthesized these contrasting arguments into a theory about the shifting. Chd. Nested Identities As Okamoto’s work highlights.annualreviews. Scholars have recently become more focused on how emotions create · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . 2000). found that cultural renewal among Native Americans has taken place under exactly the kinds of conditions that are thought to produce cultural decline. Downloaded from www. For personal use only. or melding subgroups into larger. on 01/24/13. Similarly. was facilitated by the development of a new collective identity for these groups. created a common fate among ethnic groups with otherwise distinctive cultural histories. 1994. and pan-Asian identity. 1996. collective identity will arise on the basis of cultural. the cultural division of labor theory proposes that group solidarity and collective identity arise when groups are distinctively positioned in an occupational structure on the basis of cultural markers (Hechter 1978. institution building via the establishment of new organizations and religions) and cultural practices (development of new shared rituals and symbols) involved in ethnic renewal. Nagel (1995) described the process by which subgroups can join to form a larger common identity. a shared history of discrimination and oppression. according to Green. The success of a second wave of the Christian Right movement.36:477-499. and minority set aside programs have increased the symbolic and material value of Native American identity. She referred to ethnic renewal as the process by which new ethnic identities are built/rebuilt out of historical social and symbolic systems. combined with some of the positive economic externalities described above. Olzak and colleagues have amassed considerable support for the idea that increased economic competition leads to surges in ethnic protests and collective action (Olzak et al. One argument is that positive economic conditions set the stage for this renewal. Rev. rather than economic.
In contrast. on 01/24/13.org by Punjab University. Britt & Heise (2000) argued that negative emotions that are low energy and low potency (e. it was the fusion of three notions of peoplehood that resulted in the modern politicization of ethnicity: (a) the notion of the people as a sovereign entity—with power by means of political (such as democratic) procedures. Second.annualreviews. 2010. Wimmer argues that Germany. Britt & Heise argued that certain emotion transformations (e.annualreviews. Downloaded from www. powerful. While social movement theorists focus on both aspects of collective identity— common interests/fate and common symbolic meanings—there is a strong thread in the modernity/postmodernity literature that documents a shift over time in the relative www. and national self-determination. Greece.g.solidarity and energize collective bonds (Britt & Heise 2000. Her analysis focused on how individuals balanced ideas of citizenship with feelings of powerlessness. citizenship. The conventional argument is that social and institutional complexity of late modernity (Giddens 1991) or postmodernity (Gergen 1991) has fractionalized the contemporary self. anger) can motivate individual participation in collective actions— from mild protests to large-scale conﬂict. shame and depression) are not useful for activating collective bonds or motivating joint action. Collins 1990. national and ethnic identities are perennial and basic to human social organization.36:477-499. Sociol. . She described the process of “culture work” done by volunteers working to address political avoidance by transforming feelings of powerlessness into expansion of self-interest. In a participant observation study of political avoidance in several volunteer organizations. Gould 2004. To truly energize a mobilized collective identity. Wimmer then presents what he describes as a radical modern argument: that ethnicity nationalism produced modernity as we understand it. nations and ethnic groups as we currently understand them are transitory—what he refers to as “birth pains of modernity. Wimmer (2002) speaks to this idea in his study of nationalism and ethnicity. Rev. Jasper 1998). Eliasoph studied how political disengagement is socially produced in interaction.. requires both energy and a positive sense of connection within the collective. They illustrated how aspects of participation in the gay rights movement could be seen as efforts to transform shame to fear to anger to pride in an effort to construct a solidary and energized collective identity. shame to pride) are difﬁcult to make without transitioning between more affectively similar emotions along the way. The commingling of these notions translated into three modern political principles: democracy. contemporary notions of identity are responsible for the emergence of modernity. and Israel stress nationality and from it derive the principles of democracy and citizenship. Chd. In this way. Wimmer distinguishes three positions on the issue of nationalism and ethnicity.g. according to Britt & Heise. (b) the notion of people as citizens—with rights and responsibilities. by positive. The ﬁrst is that nations and ethnic groups are truly modern phenomena. In contrast.” Third. however. Britt & Heise (2000) point out that shared emotion is not enough to generate collective identiﬁcation and action. Eliasoph showed how emotion transformation in an effort to protect personal identity can also inhibit activation and mobilization of a collective identity. Collective Identity and Modernity Much has been written about the relationship between modernity and contemporary loci of collective identity. Heise 1998.. and energetic emotions like pride. and (c) the notion of people as an ethnic community bound by common political destiny and shared cultural features. negative emotions that are higher in energy and potency (e.. According to Wimmer. For personal use only. but argues for the opposite relationship. According to Wimmer. the French and Swiss emphasize democracy and rely on the concept of democracy to derive the principles of citizenship and nationalism. Using arguments from Affect Control Theory.org • Three Faces of Identity 493 Annu. According to Wimmer. Eliasoph (2002) examined the complement to this process. Such mobilization is facilitated.g. Wimmer further argues that nations differ in the relative salience of these principles.
making them available for individuals to adopt and incorporate into a self-structure. the indigenous Mapuche. Richards describes how the pobladoras’ self-views became transformed through participation in the movement. While identity accumulation theory (Thoits 1983. Rev. importance of these two aspects in shaping category-based action. Lichterman found that compared to some of its constituent groups. and the National Women’s Service (SERNAM). 2003) and self-complexity theory (Linville 1987) argue that having access to multiple role-identities can provide the self with resources that help provide a buffer against stress. the social movement literature reveals that collective identities with layers of nested identities can provide a movement with a richer set of resources for mobilizing effective collective action (Heckathorn 1993. Lichterman 1999. Pre-1960s movements are presumed to be motivated more by more structural. Richards’s work showed how members of the women’s movement navigate the danger of fragmentation by suppressing the separate identities in the superordinate collective. 2010. Both the pobladoras and the Mapuche describe being left out of the programs implemented by SERNAM. 1994. Sometimes new labels are developed and added to a culture’s “cultural theory of people” (MacKinnon & Heise 2010). She studied the relationships between the poor. This argument about the trend away from the importance of structurally deﬁned group identities toward more personally and culturally deﬁned group identities parallels the ﬁndings in social psychology about the transition (over a similar historical period) from more structural/institutional definitions of self to more personal/dispositional deﬁnitions of self (Turner 1976). Fractal Organization of Identity Dynamics Collective identities are to groups what social identities are to individuals (Owens 2003. the LGBT coalition-building group actively avoided reﬂective discourse and engaged in more uniﬁed talk carefully designed not to raise the specter of difference or to activate potentially schismatic organizing processes. Melucci 1994. collective identity processes can sometimes mirror the processes described by the theories about internal and situational identity dynamics reviewed above. the Mapuche claims of difference and disadvantage conﬂicted with SERNAM’s goal of equality/sameness. causing schisms in both discourse and agendas. can lead to the development of an identity. integrated collective identity echoes the ﬁndings of Lichterman’s (1999) study of a sexual minority activist group as it attempted to create and maintain a solidary collective identity as a coalition-building network. p. This careful negotiation of a coherent. Therefore. 227).annualreviews. For personal use only. competing or layered identities within collectives can create opportunities for conﬂict and fractionalization. Moreover. Chd. often fueled by competition or contact.Annu. Downloaded from www. making it available for members of a category to see themselves as having a common set of interests or fate. workingclass pobladoras. Nested class and ethnic identities set the stage for potential fractures among these various groups involved in the women’s movement.36:477-499. just as multiple identities within self-structures can sometimes lead to identity conﬂict. Pobladoras identiﬁed gender as important in explaining their activism—yet initially organized around roles as wives and mothers. intergroup dynamics can lead to situations that allow groups and/or individuals to adopt different identity orientations at different moments in a political/social process. Offe 1985). The process of boundary work. 494 Owens · Robinson · Smith-Lovin . Further.org by Punjab University. Sociol. whereas post-1960s movements are thought to be driven more by meaning-based bonds (Larana ˜ et al. ascriptive category memberships and jointness of interest. on 01/24/13. Richards 2004). Richards (2004) illustrates this point with her examination of the delicate balancing act required to mobilize and maintain collective identity in the ethnically and economically diverse women’s movements in Chile. Oliver & Marwell 1988. Meanwhile.
Lawler et al. idiosyncratic meanings over a deﬁnition of situation that is institutionally imposed. individualized meaning measurement (as used in Burke’s work) and mathematical formalization (as used by Heise). among some categories of people. An exploration of this process might require a refocusing of attention on group-level studies in microsociology. for an excellent example. we may need new study of naturally occurring situations to fully exploit the linkages between internalized structure and situated action. Much of this literature focuses on the structural conditions under which new options are created for a deﬁnition of the situation. and its attention to the inter. nested. The deﬁnition of the situation is a central process in microsociological identity theories. and they are becoming increasingly connected intellectually to the issue of identity [see. Some insights from Stryker’s Identity Theory could be linked to the fast-growing literature on networks to develop the linkage between commitment and salience more fully and to explore how it impacts situated action.annualreviews. is designed to allow readers to see opportunities for enriching both traditions. We deal ﬁrst with the opportunity for connections within the microlevel traditions and then with potential for enrichment across the two distinct literatures.org • Three Faces of Identity 495 Annu. both in deﬁning situations and in generating action.CONCLUSIONS AND OPPORTUNITIES This review. and how we import cultural meanings and shape them within the context of situated interaction. and mobilization might succeed or fail. 2010. Rev. on 01/24/13. points to a need for two types of new research. The obvious point of departure is that the people who are motivated by collective identities toward political or social action are undergoing the processes already well described by the microsociological theories. layered identities and use particular identities (and the emotional responses associated with them) to motivate organized collective action may mirror the process of managing nested identity structures within individual selves. but it is rarely studied explicitly.org by Punjab University.and intragroup processes that successfully motivate actors to view a contested situation in a new way. Sociol.36:477-499. see also Moore & Robinson 2006) about how people use movement from one situation to another to maintain fundamental sentiments toward the self could be linked to Thoit’s work on identity accumulation to show how situated action accomplishes mental health beneﬁts (or. there is a parallel between processes at the individual and group levels. Exploring the few competing theoretical predictions from Identity Control Theory and Affect Control Theory (Smith-Lovin & Robinson 2006) might allow us to assess the relative value of emic. reframing of a social situation. the processes by which groups manage multiple. Although theorists should avoid loose analogies. A second area of potential enrichment comes from the collective identity focus on the group as a unit that generates social action. The collective identity literature’s use of Goffman’s framing concept. on the other. For personal use only.’s (2009) new book www. . The relatively subtle distinction that we have drawn between theories that emphasize how self-structures and internalized meanings organize social life. Chd. on the one hand. More interesting are the ways in which the collective identity literature can suggest new topics for microsociological research. While much of the microsociological literature has used either surveys (to study self-structure and internalized meanings) or experiments (to study situated meanings and how they shift in context). could point to a useful exploration of these key processes at the microlevel. with its unusual structure and its coverage of the relatively disconnected literatures on identity within the microsociology and social movements areas. Connections between the microsociological literature and the group-level treatment of collective identity are more challenging.annualreviews. This fact alone might provide some leverage for determining when recruitment. The new work by MacKinnon & Heise (2010. As we noted above. Downloaded from www. fails to do so). It might also reveal some scope conditions for when people privilege internalized. We have excellent midlevel theories of group process in sociological social psychology.
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Robert Crosnoe.annualreviews. Chd. Downloaded from www. 2010. and Corinne Reczek p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 139 Partiality of Memberships in Categories and Audiences Michael T. Relational. Institutional Theories. Soderstrom.org by Punjab University. v . Hannan p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 159 Volume 36. For personal use only. Sociol. and Brian Uzzi p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 91 From the Sociology of Intellectuals to the Sociology of Interventions Gil Eyal and Larissa Buchholz p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 117 Social Relationships and Health Behavior Across the Life Course Debra Umberson. Meyer p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p xiv Prefatory Chapter World Society. 2010 Annu. Rivera.36:477-499. Meyer p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 1 Theory and Methods Causal Inference in Sociological Research Markus Gangl p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 21 Causal Mechanisms in the Social Sciences Peter Hedstr¨ om and Petri Ylikoski p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 49 Social Processes A World of Standards but not a Standard World: Toward a Sociology of Standards and Standardization Stefan Timmermans and Steven Epstein p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 69 Dynamics of Dyads in Social Networks: Assortative. and the Actor John W.Annual Review of Sociology Contents Frontispiece John W. on 01/24/13. and Proximity Mechanisms Mark T. Rev. Sara B.
annualreviews. Denney p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 349 Gender and Health Inequality Jen’nan Ghazal Read and Bridget K. and Sheryl Skaggs p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 225 Political and Economic Sociology The Contentiousness of Markets: Politics. Pearce p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 249 Conservative and Right-Wing Movements Kathleen M. Mijs p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 407 Annu. and Yang Su p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 287 Comparative Analyses of Public Attitudes Toward Immigrants and Immigration Using Multinational Survey Data: A Review of Theories and Research Alin M. Donald Tomaskovic-Devey. Creasap p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 269 The Political Consequences of Social Movements Edwin Amenta. on 01/24/13. Sociol. Breiger p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 205 Formal Organizations Organizational Approaches to Inequality: Inertia. Neal Caren. Blee and Kimberly A. Roy and Timothy J. 2010. Pachucki and Ronald L. Relative Power. Chd. Gorman p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 371 Incarceration and Stratiﬁcation Sara Wakeﬁeld and Christopher Uggen p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 387 Achievement Inequality and the Institutional Structure of Educational Systems: A Comparative Perspective Herman G. and Justin T. Rev.B. Pampel.36:477-499. and Environments Kevin Stainback. Downloaded from www.org by Punjab University. vi Contents .Institutions and Culture What Is Sociological about Music? William G. Ceobanu and Xavier Escandell p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 309 Differentiation and Stratiﬁcation Income Inequality: New Trends and Research Directions Leslie McCall and Christine Percheski p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 329 Socioeconomic Disparities in Health Behaviors Fred C. Dowd p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 183 Cultural Holes: Beyond Relationality in Social Networks and Culture Mark A. Patrick M. Van de Werfhorst and Jonathan J. and Institutional Change in Markets Brayden G King and Nicholas A. Elizabeth Chiarello. For personal use only. Social Movements. Krueger.
Contents vii . Wright p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 501 The Decline of Cash Welfare and Implications for Social Policy and Poverty Sandra K. Rev.org/errata. Downloaded from www.org by Punjab University.annualreviews. Sociol.Historical Studies of Social Mobility and Stratiﬁcation Marco H.D. and James D. Kimberly A. For personal use only. Danziger p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 523 Indexes Cumulative Index of Contributing Authors.annualreviews. 2010. van Leeuwen and Ineke Maas p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 429 Individual and Society Race and Trust Sandra Susan Smith p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 453 Three Faces of Identity Timothy J. Volumes 27–36 p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 547 Cumulative Index of Chapter Titles. Lee. on 01/24/13.36:477-499. and Lynn Smith-Lovin p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 477 Policy The New Homelessness Revisited Barrett A.shtml Annu. Owens. Dawn T. Tyler. Chd. Volumes 27–36 p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p p 551 Errata An online log of corrections to Annual Review of Sociology articles may be found at http://soc. Robinson.
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