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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Leading with pride : do hubristic and authentic pride promote distinct forms of social status? Cheng, Joey


Why do humans experience pride? We propose that pride evolved to help individuals cope with the challenge of attaining and maintaining social status. However, given recent evidence for distinct “authentic” and “hubristic” facets of pride (Tracy and Robins, 2007), it is unclear whether the two facets promote status in different ways. Specifically, how might we account for the anti-social and narcissistic hubristic pride from a functionalist perspective? The present research addresses this question by testing whether hubristic and authentic pride underlie distinct routes to attaining high status. We argue that hubristic pride may motivate the attainment of dominance, a form of high status associated with force, threat, and intimidation; whereas authentic pride may motivate the attainment of prestige, a form of high status associated with demonstrated intelligence, skills, and altruism (Henrich & Gil-White, 2001). In the first of two studies (N = 191), we assessed the everyday experience of pride, dominance, and prestige through self-reports. In Study 2 (N = 91), we replicated these findings using self- and peer-ratings from individuals in naturalistic groups. Findings from both studies show that: (a) hubristic pride is specifically linked to dominance while authentic pride is linked to prestige; (b) the pride facets and their respective forms of status share similar patterns of correlates, consistent with evolutionary accounts of each emotion and status. Discussion focuses on implications for understanding pride, human social status, and the roles of emotion and personality in determining leadership emergence.

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