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My way or the highway: High narcissism and low self-esteem predict decreased support for democracy

Marchlewska, Marta, Castellanos, Kevin, Lewczuk, Karol, Kofta, Mirek, Cichocka, Aleksandra (2018) My way or the highway: High narcissism and low self-esteem predict decreased support for democracy. British Journal of Social Psychology, . ISSN 0144-6665. (doi:10.1111/bjso.12290)

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Abstract

In two studies, we analyzed the relationships between different types of self-evaluation (i.e., narcissism and self-esteem) and support for democracy. Support for democracy requires the ability to respect the views and opinions of others, even if one disagrees with them. Classic studies have linked support for democracy with high self-evaluation, which should assume psychological security and, thus, the ability to trust others. However, not all forms of high self-evaluation are secure. Narcissists have high feelings of self-worth, but tend to be defensive: they are easily threatened by criticisms or conflicting views. We then expected that while support for democracy should be positively predicted by secure, non-narcissistic self-evaluation, it should be negatively predicted by narcissistic self-evaluation. In two studies, conducted in the U.S. (Study 1, n=407) and in Poland (Study 2, n=405), support for democracy was positively predicted by self-esteem and negatively predicted by narcissism. Study 2 additionally demonstrated that interpersonal trust mediated the effects of self-esteem on support for democracy. We discuss the role of psychological predispositions in understanding support for democratic systems.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/bjso.12290
Uncontrolled keywords: narcissism, self-esteem, democracy, trust
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology > Social Psychology
Depositing User: Aleksandra Cichocka
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2018 12:36 UTC
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2019 00:00 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/69849 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Cichocka, Aleksandra: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1703-1586
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