Beyond Self-Esteem: Influence of Multiple Motives on Identity Construction

Vivian L. Vignoles, Vivian Laurence Vignoles, Camillo Regalia, Claudia Manzi, Jen Golledge, Eugenia Scabini

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374 Citazioni (Scopus)


Diverse theories suggest that people are motivated to maintain or enhance feelings of self-esteem, continuity, distinctiveness, belonging, efficacy, and meaning in their identities. Four studies tested the influence of these motives on identity construction, by using a multilevel regression design. Participants perceived as more central those identity elements that provided a greater sense of self-esteem, continuity, distinctiveness, and meaning; this was found for individual, relational, and group levels of identity, among various populations, and by using a prospective design. Motives for belonging and efficacy influenced identity definition indirectly through their direct influences on identity enactment and through their contributions to self-esteem. Participants were happiest about those identity elements that best satisfied motives for self-esteem and efficacy. These findings point to the need for an integrated theory of identity motivation.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)308-333
Numero di pagine26
RivistaJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2006


  • identity motives
  • self-enhancement
  • self-esteem


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