Some people have a real pain from one thought that their homeland will never appreciate. Such moods are dangerous. So, for example, the resentment of voters for their country forced them to vote for Trump not at the call of the soul, but in revenge. This phenomenon can be called collective narcissism.

The picture in the newspaper is paradoxical: it depicts a human eye, from which a tear flows, turning into a fist. This, according to the American psychologist Agnieshki Golek de Network, is an excellent illustration or metaphor of the state of those voters of Trump, which she called “collective narcissories”. Their resentment led to revenge.

When Donald Trump won the presidential election in 2016, the psychologist had a guess. She believed that Trump has two election promises on which he could play: “We will make America again the great power” and “Put its interests in the first place”. How true this hypothesis is?

In 2018, Agnieshka Golek de Network conducted a study, interviewing 1730 respondents in the United States who voted behind Trump. The researcher wanted to find out what beliefs played the main role in their choice. As expected, such characteristics of voters as gender, skin color, attitude to racism and socio-economic status turned out to be extremely important. But this is not all: resentment moved by many. Trump’s voters were hurt because the US reputation as a great power around the world was badly affected.

What is common between football and Brexit?

Golek de Name calls people who attach such a meaning of the reputation of his country, collective narcissories. The psychologist discovered collective narcissism not only among Trump’s supporters, but also among other respondents in Poland, Mexico, Hungary and Great Britain – for example, among Brexit supporters who rejected the European Union, since he “does not recognize the special position of Great Britain and has a harmful effect on British policy”. In addition, they saw in migrants a threat to the integrity of the country.

The researcher managed to discover collective narcissism even among football fans and members of the

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religious community, which means, apparently, it is not only about the nation, but also about the method of identification with any group. This phenomenon has long been a sign of social psychologists.

What is insulting to the daffodil, not offensive to the nationalist

The discovery of the golecal de, in her opinion, is not a personality property, but rather a strict belief: collective daffodils consider their group something completely exceptional, which deserves a special appeal and a constant high assessment. The second part of the beliefs is inextricably linked with this: their group is supposedly systematically underestimated, ignored and unreasonably criticized by others – regardless of how the country or community actually looks like.

Anything can make a country, a football team, a religious community for collective daffodils: military strength, economic power, democracy, religiosity, success. From the point of view of collective daffodils, it is extremely important that this exclusivity is not subjected to unfair criticism, because it is perceived as a personal insult – the group is regarded as part of their own identity.

Unlike patriots or nationalists, such people suffer from a long offense for their country or group. Nationalists and patriots, also considering their country or group the best, are not offended if someone expresses disrespect for her.

According to Golek de Narval, collective daffodils suffer from prolonged pain for the country: they not only painfully react to criticism or see ignorance where it is not, but also try not to notice the actual “misconduct” of their country or community to which they belong.

Akhillesov heel of the offended voter

A feeling of resentment entails unpleasant consequences: the desire to defend and take revenge. Therefore, collective daffodils often support politicians who are ready to resort to military means to protect the allegedly underestimated country, and promise to complicate the life of alleged opponents in their country – for example, migrants.

In addition, collective daffodils have a very narrow idea of whom to consider the “real” citizen of the country. Paradoxically, many of them do not feel at all personally related to the community that idealize. It seems that belonging and idealization mutually exclude each other. Populists in politics can very easily initiate and use these feelings of resentment in their interests.

The researcher emphasizes the importance of people to feel comfortable in their communities or teams, feel like a single and large circle of people, and could also do something for other members of the group.

If we consider the phenomenon of collective narcissism wider, we can conclude that everywhere there is a group of people united by one space, experience or idea, all its participants should be involved in communication and the common cause.

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