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Collective Self-Esteem

Julie A. Garcia and Diana T. Sanchez

Subject Psychology

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405161251.2009.x


Personal characteristics – unique attributes, abilities, traits, and values – and also group memberships – gender, religious affiliations, sexual orientation, race, and political affiliations – all shape our self-esteem. While personal self-esteem is defined as the feelings of self-worth one obtains from one's personal characteristics, collective self-esteem is defined as the feelings of self-worth one derives from one's group memberships. Luhtanen and Crocker developed a measure of collective self-esteem that includes four subscales: membership, importance, public regard, and private regard. The membership subscale measures perceptions of one's worth as a social group member. The importance subscale indicates how central that social group is to the individual's self-concept. The public regard subscale measures perceptions of how others view one's social groups. The private regard subscale indicates personal beliefs of one's social group's value. Luhtanen and Crocker's measure assesses general self-esteem tied to groups, but can also be modified to address particular groups. Researchers have used this scale to measure a wide array of group variables, including: gender, race, mental health status, and sexual orientation. In addition, researchers have used this scale to create an overall collective self-esteem score, and have also examined the sub-scales, and their correlates, ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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