TITLE: Social Identity Theory
PROPONENT: Henry Tajfel and John Turner
Henri Tajfel, of Polish-Jewish parentage, was born in Wloclawek, Poland on 22 of June 1919. At the outbreak of the second world war, he was studying chemistry at the Sorbonne. Tajfel worked for a series of relief organisations including the Œuvre de secours aux enfants (OSE), a Jewish humanitarian organisation. Tajfel's work with OSE involved resettling Jewish children, many of whom were orphans who had lost all their family. He was granted French citizenship in 1946. However, he was soon to meet his future wife Anna-Sophie Eber (Ann), who had been born in Germany but had moved to Britain before the Second World War. In 1951 Tajfel began studying psychology at Birkbeck College, University of London. He won a competitive scholarship for mature students with an essay on the subject of prejudice. In 1954 he graduated and worked as a lecturer, first at the University of Durham and then at Oxford. In his research work at the University of Oxford, Tajfel examined several different areas of social psychology, including social judgement, nationalism, and, most importantly, the cognitive aspects of prejudice. In 1967 he was made Chair of Social Psychology at the University of Bristol. At Bristol he conducted research into intergroup relations and was active in making. Bristol University a European centre for social psychology. He retired from Bristol and moved back to Oxford shortly before his death from cancer in 1982.
John Turner was born on June 7, 1929 in Richmond, Surrey, England. John Turner came to Canada as a young child in 1932. John Turner was a Prime Minister in waiting for too long. By the time John Turner had waited out the Trudeau era and was elected Leader of the Liberal Party to become Prime Minister in 1984, the country was fed up with Liberal government. Turner seemed out of touch, made a number of political gaffes, including calling an early election, and the Conservatives won a...
(by Steve Reicher, University of St-Andrews, Scotland)
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