Toward An Economic Theory of Dysfunctional Identity
We advance a novel choice-theoretic model of "identity" based on the notions of categories and narratives. Identity is conceived as a matter of "reflexive perception" -- how people understand themselves. Choosing an identity is equivalent to making a generalization about one's past that highlights the most salient aspects of experience. When many individuals make a common choice in this regard, they embrace a collective identity which is dysfunctional if it is Pareto dominated by an alternative self-classificatory schema. Using a simple multi-stage risk sharing game, we explore conditions under which dysfunctional collective identities might be expected to emerge.
|Date of creation:||Sep 2004|
|Publication status:||Published in Christopher B. Barrett (ed.), The Social Economics of Poverty: On Identities, Groups, Communities and Networks, Routledge, 2005, pp. 12-55|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Yale University, Box 208281, New Haven, CT 06520-8281 USA|
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Web page: http://cowles.yale.edu/
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|Order Information:|| Postal: Cowles Foundation, Yale University, Box 208281, New Haven, CT 06520-8281 USA|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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