American Sociological Association

Identities, Goals, and Emotions

In this study, I examine how expectations affect the emotions experienced when people verify or fail to verify their identities. Identity theory points to identity verification (i.e., thinking others view us as we see ourselves) as a source of emotions. The control model of affect provides an alternative explanation, emphasizing one’s expected rate of progress toward goal accomplishment (or verification) as a source of emotions. Results from three structural equation models testing these predictions indicate both the distance one is from identity verification and one’s progress toward verification independently influence the emotions individuals experience. These findings indicate that the two theories can be used to inform one another to provide a more precise prediction of the emotions experienced as individuals’ progress toward identity verification.


Trettevik, R.





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