Invidious Emotions in Status-Based Social Comparison: Implications For the Status Brand

Invidious emotional antecedents (envy, hostility) of schadenfreude--joy experienced when observing another’s downfall--were investigated in a status consumption context. Across 3 studies, status product failure produced schadenfreude and led to intentions to spread negative word-of-mouth (studies 1, 2), and schadenfreude increased negative affect and overall negative attitudes toward the status brand (study 3). Studies 1 and 2 suggest that envy (particularly of social attention) can lead to schadenfreude by transmuting into hostile emotions. These studies suggest that schadenfreude in a consumption context can be precipitated by factors such as degree of target advantage and flaunting of the status product.


Jill Sundie, James Ward, and Daniel J. Beal (2010) ,"Invidious Emotions in Status-Based Social Comparison: Implications For the Status Brand", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 195-198 .


Jill Sundie, University of Houston, USA
James Ward, Arizona State University, USA
Daniel J. Beal, Rice University, USA


NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37 | 2010

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