Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Haslam I 158
Common Ingroup Identity/Gaertner/Dovidio: the common ingroup identity approach to prejudice reduction [was] advanced by Samuel Gaertner and John Dovidio (e.g., Gaertner et al., 1993(1), 2000(2). In this approach, cognitive re-categorization of ‘us’ and ‘them’ into ‘all of us’ is argued to be the basis for reducing prejudice. This, indeed, was precisely the process that Sherif believed occurred in the context of intergroup cooperation for a superordinate goal in Phase 3 of his studies (e.g., see Sherif, 1951(3): 421), >Robbers Cave Experiment/Sherif, >Group behavior/Sherif, >Social groups/Sherif.
Re-categorization/GaertnerVsSherif/DovidioVsSherif: however, there are definite differences between Sherif’s analysis and the common ingroup identity model. For example, a variety of factors are assumed to lead to this cognitive re-categorization rather than just successful cooperation for a superordinate goal. The common ingroup identity model also recognizes that cognitive re-categorization processes may be different for members of minority and majority groups (e.g., Dovidio et al., 2007(4)), a factor not considered by Sherif and his colleagues.



1. Gaertner, S.L., Dovidio, J.F., Anastasio, P.A., Bachman, B.A. and Rust, M.C. (1993) ‘The common ingroup identity model: Recategorisation and the reduction of intergroup bias’, European Review of Social Psychology, 4: 1–26.
2. Gaertner, S.L., Dovidio, J.F., Banker, B.S., Houlette, M., Johnson, K.M. and McGlynn, E.A. (2000) ‘Reducing intergroup conflict: From superordinate goals to decategorization, recategorization, and mutual differentiation’, Group Dynamics: Theory, Research and Practice, 4: 98–114.
3. Sherif, M. (1951) ‘A preliminary experimental study of inter-group relations’, in J.H. Rohrer and M. Sherif (eds), Social Psychology at the Crossroads. New York: Harper & Row. pp. 388–424.
2. Sherif, M., White, B.J. and Harvey, O.J. (1955) ‘Status in experimentally produced groups’, American Journal of Sociology, 60: 370–9.
4. Dovidio, J.F., Gaertner, S.L. and Saguy, T. (2007) ‘Another view of “we”: Majority and minority group perspectives on a common ingroup identity’, European Review of Social Psychology, 18: 296–330.



Michael W. Platow and John A. Hunter, „ Intergroup Relations and Conflicts. Revisiting Sherif’s Boys’ Camp studies“, in: Joanne R. Smith and S. Alexander Haslam (eds.) 2017. Social Psychology. Revisiting the Classic studies. London: Sage Publications


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Gaertner, Samuel L.
Haslam I
S. Alexander Haslam
Joanne R. Smith
Social Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies London 2017


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