Emotions in Identity Theory

  • Jan E. StetsEmail author
  • Ryan Trettevik
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)


In this chapter, we review theory and research on emotions in identity theory. We will see that emotions are intimately related to the identity verification process in identity theory. Identity verification makes one feel good and identity non-verification makes one feel bad. We review research that has studied the conditions under which this relationship occurs such as the frequency of verification, the source (close associates/strangers) of verification, and the status (high/low) of the recipient of the verification. We also discuss how identity theorists have attempted to expand sociological knowledge on emotions by studying, among other things, specific emotions such as moral emotions and showing how positive emotions can serve as a resource/buffer in interaction. The chapter ends with some suggestions for future research on emotions in this ever-developing theory.


Identity Identity verification Negative emotions Positive emotions Specific emotions Moral emotions 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CaliforniaRiversideUSA

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