Identity Motives and Cultural Priming: Cultural (Dis)Identification in Assimilative and Contrastive Responses

Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 44, No. 4, pp. 1151-1159, February 2008

9 Pages Posted: 23 Aug 2009

See all articles by Xi (Canny) Zou

Xi (Canny) Zou

London Business School

Michael Morris

Columbia Business School - Management

Veronica Benet-Martinez

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: February 2008

Abstract

The present article explores whether effects of cultural primes are influenced by identity motives as well as by construct accessibility. The authors hypothesized that assimilative responses (shifting one’s judgments toward the norm of the primed culture) are driven by identification motives, whereas contrastive responses (shifting away from this norm) are driven by disidentification motives. Evidence for this claim was attained in reanalyzes of past data sets and a new study of Chinese American biculturals, using improved measures of identification and disidentification motives. Consistent with the identity-motive hypotheses, assimilative responses to American-culture primes occurred for high (but not low) identifiers with American culture, and contrastive responses to Chinese-culture primes occurred for high (but not low) disidentifiers with Chinese culture. Results disconfirmed an alternative account predicting that contrast effects hinge on trait self-consciousness. Consistent with an accessibility saturation account, judgment patterns already heightened in accessibility by the task structure were not made more likely by priming.

Keywords: Motive, Cultural icon prime, Assimilation, Contrast

Suggested Citation

Zou, Xi and Morris, Michael W. and Benet-Martinez, Veronica, Identity Motives and Cultural Priming: Cultural (Dis)Identification in Assimilative and Contrastive Responses (February 2008). Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 44, No. 4, pp. 1151-1159, February 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1459725

Xi Zou (Contact Author)

London Business School ( email )

Sussex Place
Regent's Park
London, NW1 4SA
United Kingdom

Michael W. Morris

Columbia Business School - Management ( email )

3022 Broadway
New York, NY 10027
United States
212-854-2296 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.michaelwmorris.com

Veronica Benet-Martinez

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
68
Abstract Views
899
rank
340,402
PlumX Metrics