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1. Social Identity Theory<br />The tendency to see ourselves as part of a group is fundamental to human nature. SIT postulates that we will discriminate against an…
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  • 1. Social Identity Theory<br />The tendency to see ourselves as part of a group is fundamental to human nature. SIT postulates that we will discriminate against an out-group even if there is no competition. Studies like the Robbers Cave experiment can’t help us to test this theory because they include the formation of groups and competition. Tajfel and Turners social identity theory was based on a series of experiments called the minimal groups studies. 2 groups are created in the absence of competition. They are told that the researchers are investigating vision and are shown dots on a screen. The boys in the study are then divided into 2 groups: overestimators and underestimators. The two groups are actually random. The boys are then told that they can allocate points to other participants which can later be converted into money. The boys overwhelmingly chose to allocate points to other boys in their own group. In spite of the fact that there was no direct competition between the two groups. Hostility between the groups was not because of competition but because the boys had competing identities.<br />Typically, when there are two groups there are inequalities between them. There is usually a dominant group and a subordinate group. The dominant group has more power. Sometimes the subordinate group act together against the dominant group. This is called collective action. Whether collective action takes place depends on 2 factors. First, if groups are seen as permeable (ie you can move from one to another easily) then collective action is unlikely. The more impermeable groups are the more likely collective action is. Second if the status of the dominant group is seen as unfair or changeable collective action is more likely.<br />Most people show in group favouritism. Poppe and Linssen (1999) demonstrated this on a national level in a survey of 1143 Eastern European teenagers. Respondents were asked to rate a range of European nationalities for their morality and efficiency. Although some national stereotypes were upheld – the English were judged to be most moral, the Italians the least efficient and so on- generally the youth of each country judged their own nation to be both more moral and more efficient than any of their neighbours.<br />Levine et al (2005) carried out an experiment on football supporters. Fans were invited to a secluded part of the university campus where they witnessed a stranger fall and apparently injure themselves. In one condition the poerson who fell wore their team colours and in the other condition they wore another teams colours. They were much more likely to help those wearing their team’s colours.<br />Banned: Which Club Has Worst Record? <br />3:33pm UK, Saturday October 21, 2006<br />Football banning orders have been slapped on a record number of hooligans.Home Office figures show there were 3,387 yobs subject to the orders, which prevent them attending domestic and international matches.<br />Hooligan banning orders<br />A total of 995 were imposed during the year, making a net total rise of 7% year-on-year after allowing for orders that have expired.<br />Meanwhile, arrests for football-related offences have dipped by 7% to 3,462 - the third consecutive season to see a fall.<br />Leeds United gained the unenviable title of the club with the most banning orders.<br />An extra 20 orders imposed on its fans during the year brought its total to 115, following an even larger rise last year.<br />Portsmouth were second with 110, followed by Cardiff City (last year's highest, falling from 152 orders to 109), Stoke City (108) and Manchester United (106).<br />Stoke City also gained the largest number of orders in the year - 58.<br />Home Office Minister Vernon Coaker said: " I am very encouraged by the new figures.<br />" A 7% decrease in football-related arrests coupled with a 7% increase in football banning orders shows that tough legislation and targeted policing continues to be effective.<br />" However, we are not complacent. Football disorder remains a lingering menace, and will not be tolerated." <br />Sports Minister Richard Caborn said: " The thrill of watching football from the terraces without fear of violence is the right of the genuine majority fans and should not be compromised by the tiny minority of thugs intent on causing trouble." <br />The Premiership overtook the Championship for the largest number of arrests in the year.<br />There were 1,221 at Premier League games, up from 984 in 2004-05, while Championship arrests fell from 1,047 to 877.<br /><ul><li>Explain, using ideas from social identity theory, why people might take part in football violence.
  • 2. Why, according to social identity theory, might certain clubs become associated with particularly high levels of violence?
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