Is everyone Irish on St Patrick's Day? Divergent expectations and experiences of collective self-objectification at a multicultural parade

Pehrson, Samuel and Stevenson, Clifford and Muldoon, Orla T. and Reicher, Steve (2014) Is everyone Irish on St Patrick's Day? Divergent expectations and experiences of collective self-objectification at a multicultural parade. British Journal of Social Psychology, 53 (2). pp. 249-264. ISSN 0144-6665

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Abstract

We examine experiences of collective self-objectification (or its failure) among participants in a ‘multicultural’ St Patrick’s Day parade. A two-stage interview study was carried out in which ten parade participants (five each from ethnic majority and minority groups) were interviewed before and after the event. In pre-event interviews, all participants understood the parade as an opportunity to enact social identities, but differed in the category definitions and relations they saw as relevant. Members of the white Irish majority saw the event as being primarily about representing Ireland in a positive, progressive, light, while members of minority groups saw it as an opportunity to have their groups’ identities and belonging in Ireland recognised by others. Post-event interviews revealed that, for the former group, the event succeeded in giving expression to their relevant category definitions. The latter group, on the other hand, cited features of the event such as inauthentic costume design and a segregated structure as reasons for why the event did not provide the group recognition they sought. The accounts revealed a variety of empowering and disempowering experiences corresponding to the extent of enactment. We consider the implications in terms of collective self-objectification, the performative nature of dual identities, as well as the notion of multicultural recognition.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: social identity, crowd behaviour, multiculturalism
Faculty: Faculty of Science & Technology
Depositing User: Dr Clifford Stevenson
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2016 09:21
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2016 09:29
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/700581

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