“I'm ashamed because of you, so please, don't do that!”: Reactions to deviance as a protection against a threat to social image
Article first published online: 15 JUN 2011
Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
European Journal of Social Psychology
Special Issue: The Centrality of Social Image in Social Psychology
Volume 41, Issue 4, pages 479–488, June 2011
How to Cite
Chekroun, P. and Nugier, A. (2011), “I'm ashamed because of you, so please, don't do that!”: Reactions to deviance as a protection against a threat to social image. Eur. J. Soc. Psychol., 41: 479–488. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.809
- Issue published online: 15 JUN 2011
- Article first published online: 15 JUN 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 5 APR 2011
- Manuscript Revised: 1 FEB 2011
- Manuscript Received: 30 JUN 2010
- Agence National de la Recherche. Grant Number: ANR-09-BLAN-0306-01
The present research investigated the role that threat to social image and self-conscious emotions play in reaction to deviance. In three studies, participants were invited to imagine themselves in a situation in which they were bystanders of a deviant behavior. We manipulated the threat to the in-group's social image through the deviant group membership (Study 1), the visibility of the deviant behavior to a third party (Study 2), and the stereotype salience of the deviant behavior (Study 3). Social image concerns, emotional reactions, and intention of sanctioning the deviant were measured. The results revealed that the situations in which the threat to the social image of the group was high provoked the greater intentions to sanction the deviant. Moreover, intentions were accounted for by the more intense shame and embarrassment (but not guilt) reported by the participants when faced with a group-threatening situation. The findings indicate that reactions to deviance are highly dependent on the damage caused to the group's social image and on self-conscious emotions. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.