More Than Meets the Eye: the Influence of Implicit Self-Esteem on Materialism

Ji Kyung Park, University of Minnesota, USA
Deborah Roedder-John, University of Minnesota, USA
Materialism researchers have consistently found that individuals with high self-esteem are less materialistic than those with low self-esteem. Self-esteem has been measured with self-report scales, which tap conscious evaluations of self-worth, known as explicit self-esteem. In this article, we propose that implicit self-esteem, defined as unconscious evaluations of self-worth, is also an important determinant of materialism. We explore the joint effect of implicit and explicit self-esteem on materialistic tendencies. Contrary to prior research, we find that individuals with high explicit self-esteem can be quite materialistic when these feelings of self-worth are accompanied by low implicit self-esteem.
[ to cite ]:
Ji Kyung Park and Deborah Roedder-John (2009) ,"More Than Meets the Eye: the Influence of Implicit Self-Esteem on Materialism", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 36, eds. Ann L. McGill and Sharon Shavitt, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 537-538.