Endorsing a negative in-group stereotype as a self-protective strategy: Sacrificing the group to save the self
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This work examined if stigmatized targets will embrace negative in-group stereotypes in order to protect their self-esteem from the threat of stereotypic failures. All studies focused on the stereotype that women have lower math ability than men. In Study 1, women who failed a math test showed buffered self-esteem if they were first given the opportunity to endorse this stereotype. Study 2 replicated this effect and showed that women, but not men, increased their endorsement of this stereotype following math failure. Study 3 showed that the tendency to embrace this stereotype in response to failure was most pronounced among women with high trait self-esteem. Together, these findings suggest that there are contexts in which stigmatized individuals can protect their self-esteem in the face of stereotypic failures by embracing the very stereotypes that would have predicted their failure. © 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
author list (cited authors)
Burkley, M., & Blanton, H.