Power and Categorization: Power Increases the Number and Abstractness of Categories Academic Article uri icon


  • Across three experiments, participants formed a larger number of categories when in a state of high, compared to low, psychological power. Moreover, in contrast to prior categorization research, which suggests forming more categories is tantamount to reduced breadth of categorization, high-power participants also formed a larger number of superordinate (i.e., more abstract) categories than low-power participants. The present findings enhance the understanding of power in relation to categorization and simultaneously highlight the distinction between number and abstraction as fundamental aspects of categorization.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 1.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Smith, P. K., Smallman, R., & Rucker, D. D.

citation count

  • 8

complete list of authors

  • Smith, Pamela K||Smallman, Rachel||Rucker, Derek D

publication date

  • April 2016