Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nonconscious mimicry as an automatic behavioral response to social exclusion

Lakin, J.L., Chartrand, T.L., & Arkin, R.M. (2008). I am too just like you: Nonconscious mimicry as an automatic behavioral response to social exclusion. Psychological Science, 19, 8, 816-822.

First, this study showed that following exclusion by a group, participants increased their nonconscious behavioral mimicry of a brand-new interaction partner, reinforcing the expectation that people should be motivated to engage in affiliative behaviors after exclusion. Second, the study attempted to see if this automatic behavior is carried out bluntly, or whether it is sensitive to other factors. Researchers found that individuals excluded by an in-group mimicked the behaviors of a subsequent interaction partner only if the partner was an in-group member (as opposed to an out-group member). Therefore, it appears that people are selective with their use of automatic mimicry, increasing employment of it with people who can potentially restore their status with the in-group. In this way, belongingness was seen as related to mimicry. (Other factors, such as mood, self-esteem, meaningful existence, and control did not appear to be as related.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What if an individual mimics another's behavior such as using the same drinking glass, music, TV program, and the like after seeing the other using them? Is it a feeling of exclusion from an individual, or an issue of control, or is it simply admiration? Perhaps it is a combination of such things.