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0022-3514/01/S5.00 DOI: I0.1037//0022-3514.80.4.669 What's in a Name: Implicit Self-Esteem and the Automatic Self

By Sander L. Koole and Ap Dijksterhuis


This article explores the links between implicit self-esteem and the automatic self (D. L. Paulhus, 1993). Across 4 studies, name letter evaluations were positively biased, confirming that implicit self-esteem is generally positive (A. G. Greenwald & M. R. Banaji, 1995). Study 1 found that this name letter bias was stable over a 4-week period. Study 2 found that positive bias for name letters and positive bias for birth date numbers were correlated and that both biases became inhibited when participants were induced to respond in a deliberative manner. Studies 3-4 found that implicit self-evaluations corresponded with self-reported self-evaluations, but only when participants were evaluating themselves very quickly (Study 3) or under cognitive load (Study 4). Together, these findings support the notion that implicit self-esteem phenomena are driven by self-evaluations that are activated automatically and without conscious self-reflection. Just what are people doing when they are evaluating themselves? Conventional psychological wisdom holds that the selfevaluation process invariably operates through conscious selfreflection (Baumeister, 1998; Brown, 1998; Sedikides & Strube, 1997). Accordingly, individuals engaged in self-evaluation are believed to be "peering inward " (Hixon & Swann, 1993), asking themselves questions about such topics as their self-attributes (Pelham & Swann, 1989; Sedikides, 1993), the causes of thei

Year: 2013
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