Skip to main content

Please enter a keyword and click the arrow to search the site

Beliefs About the Causal Structure of the Self-Concept Determine Which Changes Disrupt Personal Identity

Journal

Psychological Science

Subject

Marketing

Authors / Editors

Chen S Y;Urminsky O;Bartels D M

Biographies

Publication Year

2016

Abstract

Personal identity is an important determinant of behavior, yet how people mentally represent their self-concepts and their concepts of other people is not well understood. In the current studies, we examined the age-old question of what makes people who they are. We propose a novel approach to identity that suggests that the answer lies in people’s beliefs about how the features of identity (e.g., memories, moral qualities, personality traits) are causally related to each other. We examined the impact of the causal centrality of a feature, a key determinant of the extent to which a feature defines a concept, on judgments of identity continuity. We found support for this approach in three experiments using both measured and manipulated causal centrality. For judgments both of one’s self and of others, we found that some features are perceived to be more causally central than others and that changes in such causally central features are believed to be more disruptive to identity.

Keywords

causal reasoning; personal identity; self-concept; open data; open materials

Available on ECCH

No


Select up to 4 programmes to compare

Select one more to compare
×
subscribe_image_desktop 5949B9BFE33243D782D1C7A17E3345D0

Sign up to receive our latest news and business thinking direct to your inbox

×

Sign up to receive our latest course information and business thinking

Leave your details above if you would like to receive emails containing the latest thought leadership, invitations to events and news about courses that could enhance your career. If you would prefer not to receive our emails, you can still access the case study by clicking the button below. You can opt-out of receiving our emails at any time by visiting: https://london.edu/my-profile-preferences or by unsubscribing through the link provided in our emails. View our Privacy Policy for more information on your rights.