Social Identity Theory And Realistic Group Conflict Theory

Good Essays
Whilst conflict is inevitable Harding provides insight in describing conflict “as the beginning of consciousness”.
Realistic group conflict theory (RGCT) offers a behavioural approach to conflict resolution demonstrated in Sheriff Robert Cave’s experiment. RGCT asserts that a real or imagined threat to one’s group interest often leads to conflict. Initially the situation presented with a competitive edge as the groups clamoured for the scarce resource . However, through working together, they were able to pool physical and financial resources to benefit both groups. It is through series of behavioral actions the two groups realized they could accomplish the super ordinate goals set before them. Groups were also formed in the case study where it was found that Mary and brother’s formed two group and gathered allies, the superordinate goal could be for both groups to work towards finding a solution on care that is in the best interest of Ms Koulias.
Whilst Realistic group conflict theory is a start to understanding this conflict , Social identity theory (SIT) that evolved from RGCT would provide a deeper understanding of the conflict. Tajfel defined social identity as "that part of an individual 's self-concept which derives from his membership of a social group (or groups), together with the value and emotional significance attached to this" (p. 63) SIT leans towards a cognitive approach of in-group bias. In group members believing that they are in a group with
Get Access