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Humble Self-Enhancement: Religiosity and the Better-Than-Average Effect
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. (Mathematics and Applied Mathematics)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7164-0924
Mälardalen University, School of Education, Culture and Communication, Educational Sciences and Mathematics. (Mathematics and Applied Mathematics)
2014 (English)In: Social Psychology and Personality Science, ISSN 1948-5506, E-ISSN 1948-5514, Vol. 5, no 1, 76-83 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Prior research has linked religiosity to certain forms of self-enhancement. We extend this literature by three studies linking religiosity to the well-established better-than-average effect (BAE). First, a reanalysis of self-judgments of desirable characteristics in 15 nations showed that the BAE was stronger in more religious countries, even taking into account gross domestic product, interdependence, and economic inequality. Second, in two online surveys totaling 1,000 Americans, the BAE was stronger among more religious individuals. Several observations indicated that this relation was due to individuals self-stereotyping with respect to their religious in-groups. In particular, the relation was restricted to characteristics on the warmth dimension, consistent with the religious stereotype, and the average religious in-group member tended to be judged even more favorably than self. The latter phenomenon, which we term humble self-enhancement, is consistent with other studies linking stronger religiosity to greater favoritism of the religious in-group and greater derogation of religious out-groups. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 5, no 1, 76-83 p.
Keyword [en]
better-than-average effect, in-group bias, religiosity, self-enhancement
National Category
Social Sciences Other Mathematics
Research subject
Mathematics/Applied Mathematics
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-24173DOI: 10.1177/1948550613484179ISI: 000336437300011ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84890720938OAI: diva2:685999
Swedish Research Council, 2009-2390
Available from: 2014-01-10 Created: 2014-01-10 Last updated: 2015-03-17Bibliographically approved

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