Affective reactions to social comparison: The effects of relative performance and related attributes information about another person

James A. Kulik, Brooks B. Gump

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Scopus citations


Males performed a task and then were led to believe they had performed worse, the same, or better than another male who appeared to be advantaged, similar, or disadvantaged with respect to performance-related attributes. When presented simultaneously with relative performance information, the comparison other's related attributes had surprisingly little impact on subjects' affective reactions (Experiment 1), even when attention was directed explicitly to the related attribute information (Experiment 2). When the comparison other's related attribute information was considered prior to the relative performance information, however, the related attribute information did have an impact on affective reactions (Experiment 3). The related attributes of another person may thus have a more circumscribed influence on one's affective reactions to performance than generally expected. Possible moderating and mediating factors are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)452-468
Number of pages17
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1997
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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