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Fame and the social self: The need to belong, narcissism, and relatedness predict the appeal of fame


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a b s t r a c t The present online survey study (Amazon's MTurk; n = 371) investigated links between three different social self-concepts (the need to belong, narcissism, and relatedness) and the appeal of fame. We exam-ined fame attitudes using a newly-devised fame appeal scale (yielding three factors: Visibility, Status and Prosocial), as well as with two items probing frequency of fame fantasizing and perceived realism of becoming famous. Results show that higher belongingness needs were associated with increased appeal of all three fame factors, as well as increased frequency of fantasizing about fame (accounting for age and gender). Narcissism was associated with increased appeal of Visibility and Status, more time spent engaged in fame fantasy, and greater perceived realism of future fame. Finally, Relatedness predicted increased appeal of the Prosocial fame factor only. Findings illuminate the socioemotional underpinnings of fame appeal and the individual differences that may render certain aspects of fame particularly alluring.
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Fame and the social self: The need to belong, narcissism,
and relatedness predict the appeal of fame
Dara Greenwood
, Christopher R. Long
, Sonya Dal Cin
Vassar College, Department of Psychology, 124 Raymond Ave. Box 49, Poughkeepsie, NY 12604, United States
Ouachita Baptist University, Department of Psychology, 410 Ouachita Street, Box 3734, Arkadelphia, AR 71998, United States
University of Michigan, Department of Communication Studies, Research Center for Group Dynamics, Institute for Social Research,
5370 North Quad, 105 South State Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1285, United States
article info
Article history:
Received 18 January 2013
Received in revised form 10 April 2013
Accepted 17 April 2013
Available online 6 June 2013
The present online survey study (Amazon’s MTurk; n= 371) investigated links between three different
social self-concepts (the need to belong, narcissism, and relatedness) and the appeal of fame. We exam-
ined fame attitudes using a newly-devised fame appeal scale (yielding three factors: Visibility, Status and
Prosocial), as well as with two items probing frequency of fame fantasizing and perceived realism of
becoming famous. Results show that higher belongingness needs were associated with increased appeal
of all three fame factors, as well as increased frequency of fantasizing about fame (accounting for age and
gender). Narcissism was associated with increased appeal of Visibility and Status, more time spent
engaged in fame fantasy, and greater perceived realism of future fame. Finally, Relatedness predicted
increased appeal of the Prosocial fame factor only. Findings illuminate the socioemotional underpinnings
of fame appeal and the individual differences that may render certain aspects of fame particularly
Ó2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
1. Introduction
We are not only gregarious animals, liking to be in sight of our
fellows, but we have an innate propensity to get ourselves
noticed, and noticed favorably, by our kind (James, 1893, p. 179).
The present media landscape is increasingly saturated with
images of fame and celebrity. From television to magazines to
websites and blogs, we are chronically confronted with other peo-
ple’s glamorous lifestyles, wardrobes, romantic partners and suc-
cess stories. Further, we are living in a cultural moment in which
ostensibly anyone can achieve sudden fame via the latest reality
television show or video (or via celebrity scent
osmosis with Lady Gaga’s perfume: Fame). While the allure of fame
is certainly not a new phenomenon, the ubiquity and perceived
accessibility of fame seems to be at an all time high. Thus, it seems
prudent to empirically interrogate why fame may be appealing and
for whom. The present study investigates trends in views of self in
concert with views of fame in an adult sample.
Specifically, we explore three constructs that tap individuals’
sense of self in relation to others: the extent to which individuals
are preoccupied with inclusion (i.e., the Need to Belong, Leary,
Kelly, Cottrell, & Schreindorfer, 2005); the extent to which individ-
uals feel superior to others (Narcissism, Konrath, Meier, & Bushman,
2013); and, the extent to which individuals feel securely connected
to others (i.e., the Relatedness subscale of Deci & Ryan’s, 2000, Basic
Psychological Needs scale). We reasoned that these constructs cap-
tured three distinct if related views of self in a social context, which
would help clarify social psychological motivations for fame. A
desire to fit in, a belief in self-importance, and a sense of positive
social connection might each be linked to a greater or less extent
with particular appeals of fame. We examine the latter via a newly-
devised scale that incorporates various motives–from being
recognized, to being wealthy, to having the ability to help others.
1.1. Need to belong
The need to belong, or to feel positively and consistently con-
nected to others, has been conceptualized as a fundamental human
need that underlies various cultural institutions, from religion to
marriage, and is associated with emotional well-being (Baumeister
& Leary, 1995). This affiliative motivation may have primitive,
powerful roots. Many scholars agree that throughout human his-
tory, being a member of a cohesive social group could mean the
difference between life and death from any number of outside
threats. The extent to which physical survival hinged on successful
social bonds is also supported by recent research in social
neuroscience. For example, reminding people of recent rejection
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E-mail address: (D. Greenwood).
Personality and Individual Differences 55 (2013) 490–495
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experiences activates areas of the brain associated not only with
emotional pain, but with physical pain (Kross, Berman, Mischel,
Smith, & Wager, 2011). We are apparently biologically prepared
to attend to and avoid social rejection much in the same way that
we are motivated to attend to and avoid physical pain.
If being seen and valued are of paramount importance to hu-
man survival-physical and emotional-it is intuitive to imagine that
fame, and the visibility and value it confers, may be considered the
ultimate vehicle by which to accomplish these goals. Indeed, Bau-
meister and Leary (1995) point out that in modern society, the fun-
damental need to belong may manifest in a ‘‘fundamental quest for
fame’’ (p. 521)-motivated by the fantasy that fame may come with
the promise of lifelong social inclusion. In a related vein, recent
scholarship has shown that fame may be particularly appealing
to those whose primitive anxieties about death have been aroused.
In three different studies, Greenberg, Kosloff, Solomon, Cohen, and
Landau (2010) found that priming people with death anxiety in-
creased interest in becoming famous, having a star named after
them, and increased liking for a painting that was attributed to
Johnny Depp (vs. a lesser known artist). The explanation for these
findings, according to the authors, is that being famous provides a
form of symbolic immortality.
The need to belong can be conceptualized as both a fundamen-
tal human need and as an individual difference that captures the
extent to which individuals are preoccupied with social inclusion
(e.g., ‘‘I want other people to accept me’’; Leary et al., 2005). Indi-
viduals with heightened inclusion needs may find fame and celeb-
rity particularly appealing because of the social value fame confers.
Indeed, related research shows that increased belongingness needs
predicted increased imagined intimacy with media figures (Green-
wood & Long, 2011). Famous others may function as idealized
‘‘friends’’ with whom to affiliate; such affiliations may also tempo-
rarily soothe inclusion needs (Derrick, Gabriel, & Hugenberg,
2009). To our knowledge, however, no one has yet assessed the
need to belong in concert with an interest in fame per se. Our study
is designed to test this prediction.
1.2. Narcissism
Much scholarly and popular discussion has focused on the rise
of narcissism in American culture (e.g., Twenge & Campbell,
2009). Although psychologists continue to clarify the definitional
nuances of narcissism (grandiose vs. vulnerable subtypes; unstable
vs. truly high self-esteem), it is typically characterized by an expli-
cit perception of superiority over others and is often linked to anti-
social tendencies such as aggression and lower levels of empathy
(Bushman & Thomaes, 2011). Explanations for this increase are di-
verse and speculative, but scholars have noted a comorbid empha-
sis on self-aggrandizement in both social and entertainment media
(Konrath, O’Brien, & Hsing, 2010; Twenge & Campbell, 2009). A cul-
tural climate that celebrates self-promotion may not only render
fame appealing to those hoping to fit in, but to those hoping to
stand out. Perhaps not surprisingly, narcissism has been found to
predict an interest in fame (Maltby, 2010) and in extrinsic aspira-
tions (including a desire for fame and wealth) more broadly con-
strued (Kasser & Ryan, 1996).
One of the most elaborate recent investigations of fame interest
was undertaken by Maltby (2010), who found that narcissism was
positively correlated with Intensity (e.g., ‘‘Very little matters to me
apart from being famous’’) Celebrity Lifestyle (e.g., ‘‘I want to be
rich’’), Drive (e.g., ‘‘I work hard everyday to be famous’’), and Per-
ceived Suitability (e.g., ‘‘I’ve got what it takes to be famous’’). Nar-
cissism was not correlated significantly with altruistic motives for
fame, nor was it correlated with an acknowledged interest in fame
due to personal feelings of vulnerability (e.g., ‘‘I want to be famous
because then people would notice me’’). The present study repli-
cates and extends Maltby’s (2010) work by reassessing associa-
tions between narcissism and fame interest and constructing a
new, streamlined fame measure. Maltby’s (2010) utilized 42 items
and six subscales, which proved difficult to simplify due to high
overlap among them; we aimed for greater parsimony by generat-
ing fewer, more focused items with the goal of capturing fewer dis-
tinct factors. Further, rather than ask participants to report on a
personal investment in fame, we ask about the broader perceived
appeal of fame, which taps normative motivations. We also build
on Maltby’s (2010) work by contextualizing narcissistic links to
fame appeal with less overtly attention-seeking tendencies: the
need to belong and our final self-concept construct, a positive
sense of feeling connected to others.
1.3. Relatedness
Relatedness has been conceptualized as one of three ‘‘basic psy-
chological needs’’ by Deci and Ryan’s (2000), along with feelings of
autonomy and competence, all of which are indicators of a healthy
socio-emotional life. Scoring high on relatedness, unlike scoring
high on belongingness needs, does not indicate anxiety about so-
cial exclusion, but rather a sense of security with one’s social net-
work and the degree to which one is valued by others. Research has
found that daily feelings of relatedness—feeling understood and
having meaningful interactions with social partners—were associ-
ated with positive mood, vitality and well-being (Reis, Sheldon, Ga-
ble, Roscoe, & Ryan, 2000). Further, when one’s relational needs are
met, one may be less motivated to attain extrinsic goals such as
image, fame, and wealth (Deci & Ryan, 2000)—the latter of which
have been shown to be associated with lower levels of emotional
health and well-being (Kasser & Ryan, 1996). Compared to individ-
uals with inclusion anxiety or with heightened perceptions of their
own superiority, individuals whose social and emotional needs are
met by their existing social networks may not feel the need to fan-
tasize about being seen and valued on a grander scale.
1.4. The present study
The present study seeks to clarify how specific views of self are
associated with specific dimensions of fame appeal. The goals of
the present study were two-fold: (1) to devise a streamlined mea-
sure of fame appeal, and, (2) to determine whether and how the
need to belong, narcissism and relatedness predict specific facets
of fame appeal. With respect to the first goal, we generated a series
of items aimed to capture various motives: to be seen/recognized,
to have status/wealth, to help others or be a role model, and to
have power/control over one’s life. Although we were engaged in
exploratory scale development, we designed the scale with antici-
pated conceptual groupings in mind, which were used to generate
relevant hypotheses.
We predicted that increased belonging needs would predict in-
creased appeal of all aspects of fame because fame per se may be a
powerful draw for those with a strong desire to be a valued group
member. However, in step with prior research, we predicted that
narcissism would be linked to self-promotional aspects of fame
such as recognition and status. Conversely, we predicted that relat-
edness would be associated with other-oriented motives for fame,
if any. Individuals who feel meaningfully connected to others in
their social networks may be less likely to crave opportunities for
superficial forms of recognition or status. Finally, we predicted that
increased belongingness needs would be associated with fantasiz-
ing about fame, though not necessarily with perceived realism of
fame, whereas narcissism would predict both fantasizing and per-
ceived realism of becoming famous one day.
We anticipated that women would score higher on belonging
needs, as was previously found (Greenwood & Long, 2011), as well
D. Greenwood et al. / Personality and Individual Differences 55 (2013) 490–495 491
as on relatedness and other-oriented fame appeal, given socializa-
tion practices that encourage women to be more vigilant about
forming/maintaining social relationships (Eagly, 1987). In step
with prior research, we anticipated that men might score higher
on narcissism than women (e.g., Foster, Campbell, & Twenge,
2003). Finally, we expected that age might be inversely related to
fame interest and narcissism, both of which have been found to
be prevalent or salient for younger generations (Foster et al.,
2003; Uhls & Greenfield, 2012).
2. Methods
2.1. Participants
Participants were recruited from Amazon’s Mechanical Turk (US
sample) for a study entitled ‘‘Self and culture survey,’’ which they
were told would take approximately 20 minutes to complete and
yield compensation of USD $.65 for their time. Originally 408
individuals completed the survey. After various exclusions (e.g.,
technical difficulties, unreasonably short response times, missing
responses to key demographic items), the final sample was
n= 371 (52% male). The mean age of the sample was 31
(range = 18–73 years; 75% of the sample 635 years old). Self-
reports indicated 78% of the sample identified as White/Caucasian,
8% identified as Asian (broadly defined), 5% identified as Black or
African American, 5% as Latino/a, 3% as biracial, .5% as Native
American and .5% unclear (e.g., ‘‘American’’).
2.2. Measures
2.2.1. Need to belong (NTB)
Belonging needs were assessed via Leary et al.’s (2005) 10-item
scale (e.g., ‘‘I do not like being alone’’
= .86). Responses were
made on a 1–7 scale (Disagree Strongly to Agree Strongly).
2.2.2. Narcissism
For brevity, we utilized a single-item narcissism scale (SINS)
measure developed by Konrath et al. (2013): ‘‘To what extent do
you agree with this statement: ‘I am a narcissist.’ (Note: The word
‘‘narcissist’’ means egotistical, self-focused, vain, etc.).’’ Responses
were made on an 11-pt scale (Not very true of me to Very true of
me). Though potentially counter-intuitive, this scale is in step with
research suggesting that narcissistic individuals are aware of their
narcissistic tendencies (Carlson, 2013). The SINS has shown reli-
able associations with diverse measures of narcissism across at
least 10 different survey samples (Konrath et al., 2013).
2.2.3. Relatedness
We utilized the 9-item Relatedness subscale from the Basic Psy-
chological Needs scale (Deci & Ryan, 2000; adapted from Kasser,
Davey, & Ryan, 1992; e.g., ‘‘I consider the people I regularly interact
with to be my friends’’;
= .84).
2.2.4. Fame appeal
To determine whether specific psychological differences might
be linked to distinct motivations for being famous, we initially gen-
erated 25 items designed to capture various imagined appeals of
being famous: being seen/recognized, enjoying a high status/
wealthy lifestyle, helping others, and feeling powerful. Scale
instructions asked ‘‘Which of the following aspects of fame seem
most appealing to you, if at all...?’’ (7-pt scale: Not very appealing
to Very appealing).
Our initial exploratory factor analysis (promax rotation, maxi-
mum likelihood) yielded four factors in line with the above
descriptions. However, the final factor capturing feelings of domi-
nance, accounted for 2.9% of the variance and the highest loading
item was .52 (‘‘feeling powerful’’); the rest showed numerous
cross-loadings (‘‘showing up people who didn’t believe in you,’’
‘‘being able to call the shots regarding your future,’’ ‘‘being the best
in your field’’: P.32 on more than one factor, following criteria
from Tabachnick & Fidell, 2001). When these items and other
cross-loading items were dropped from the analysis, three distinct
factors remained. The final 18-item scale comprised factors we
have labeled: Visibility (Eigenvalue = 6.95, 38.6% of variance), Sta-
tus (Eigenvalue = 2.67, 14.8% of variance) and Prosocial (Eigen-
value = 1.55, 8.6% of variance). Table 1 shows factor loadings and
item wording. All three factors were moderately correlated with
one another (shown in Table 2).
Two final items asked how often participants imagined being
famous: Fame Fantasy; (never, rarely, sometimes, often) and how
realistic they believed it was that they would become famous
one day: Fame Realism (7-pt scale; Not at all to Extremely).
2.3. Procedure
Self-concept measures (Narcissism, NTB and Relatedness) were
counterbalanced with fame measures (alongside other related con-
structs not the focus of the present study). At the end of the survey,
participants were provided with a debriefing page.
3. Results
3.1. Preliminary analyses: gender and age
We ran a MANOVA (Bonferroni-corrected) to determine which,
if any, psychological or fame variables differed as a function of
Table 1
Factor loadings for fame appeal items.
Item Factor 1
Factor 2
Factor 3
Being on the cover of a magazine .845 .026 .023
Having your picture taken .834 .060 .017
Being recognized in public .812 .052 .062
Doing press interviews .774 .172 .053
Being asked for your autograph .730 .034 .023
Have a lot of followers on Twitter or
other social media
.701 .097 .070
Attending awards shows .647 .169 .028
Being a spokesperson for favorite
products or brands
.621 .044 .134
Having the ability to travel in first
class and stay at exclusive resorts
.126 .864 .032
Receiving free gifts of luxury items .070 .781 .055
Living in a mansion or penthouse
.050 .767 .036
Having VIP access to the best
.042 .757 .056
Having an expensive/fashionable
.276 .571 .051
Being financially secure .215 .454 .220
Being able to financially support
family and friends
.192 .073 .660
Making family/friends proud .068 .030 .634
Being able to use your fame for
important causes
.032 .081 .617
Being a role model to others? .263 .122 .606
Note: Bolded numbers represent highest loading items on each factor (items reor-
dered by factor).
Additional validation for the fame measure comes from more recently collected
data by the first author; the fame measure shows the same factor structure in a
college sample and the same basic patterns regarding narcissism (using the more
traditional NPI) and belonging.
492 D. Greenwood et al. / Personality and Individual Differences 55 (2013) 490–495
participant gender. Results showed that women scored higher than
men on NTB, F(1, 343) = 5.35, p< .05 (M= 4.2 > M= 3.9); and on
both the Status fame factor, F(1, 343) = 4.30, p< .05
(M= .10 > M=.11) and Prosocial fame factor, F(1, 343) = 5.90,
p< .05 (M= .13 > M=.10). Men scored marginally higher on Nar-
cissism (p< .09), and Fame Fantasy (p< .06) than women did.
We performed additional correlations to examine expected in-
verse associations between our broad age range (18–73) and key
study variables. Age was inversely related to all variables except
for Prosocial fame factor (ns) and Relatedness, r(363) = .12,
p< .05.
Thus, younger individuals were higher on Narcissism,
Belonging, Visibility and Status fame appeals, Fame Fantasy and
Fame Realism than their older counterparts, but lower on feelings
of Relatedness.
Due to the above differences, we control for age and gender in
the analyses below. However, it is worth noting that results are vir-
tually analogous, with only minor exceptions, when these covari-
ates are not included.
3.2. Primary analyses
Means and partial correlations (controlling for age and gender)
for key study variables are presented in Table 2. NTB was robustly
correlated with all fame measures except for Fame Realism; Nar-
cissism showed positive associations with all fame measures ex-
cept Prosocial. In contrast, Relatedness was only significant
associated with Prosocial fame appeal. Moderate correlations
emerged among fame factors and between fame factors and Fame
Fantasy/Realism, as might be expected. Narcissism was inversely
correlated with Relatedness; neither was significantly associated
with NTB.
To determine the relative contribution of the psychological con-
structs to each fame factor, we ran three hierarchical linear regres-
sions, including gender and age in Step 1 and NTB, Narcissism, and
Relatedness in Step 2. Both steps in each model explained a signif-
icant portion of the variance for each regression. As shown in
Table 3, each of the significant correlational relationships noted
above remain significant when the psychological predictors are
considered simultaneously.
4. Discussion
The present study examined how three different indices of so-
cial self-concept: belonging, narcissism and relatedness, predicted
attitudes towards being famous. Although prior research has fo-
cused on links between narcissism and fame, ours is the first to
additionally consider whether concerns about or contentment with
perceived social value were meaningfully related to fame attitudes.
Our measure of fame appeal resulted in three factors: the desire to
be seen/valued (Visibility) accounted for the most variance, fol-
lowed by the desire for an elite, high status lifestyle (Status) and
the desire to use fame to help others or make them proud (Proso-
cial). Our findings show that both belongingness needs and narcis-
sism were associated with multiple dimensions of fame appeal,
whereas relatedness was only associated with the prosocial factor.
Individuals with heightened belongingness needs were drawn
to all aspects of fame, except for a belief in fame realism. Both
Table 2
Means and intercorrelations (controlling for gender and age) among study variables.
Mean SD NTB Narc Relate Visibility Status Prosocial Fantasy Realism
NTB 4.05 1.02 – .10 .06 .26
Narc 3.84 2.51 .13 .15
.01 .14
Relate 5.02 .88 .04 .05 .29
.04 .00
Visibility – .48
Status – .56
Prosocial – .26
Fantasy 2.18 .84 .37
Realism 1.87 1.19
Note: NTB is need to belong (7-pt scale), Narc is Narcissism (11-pt scale), Relate is Relatedness (7-pt scale), Visibility, Status and Prosocial are the three fame factors
(Means = 0; SDs = .96, .95, & .88, respectively). Fantasy is Fame Fantasy (1–4, never, rarely, sometimes, often) and Realism is Fame Realism (7-pt scale). Pairwise correlations
were used to account for missing data across variables.
Table 3
Hierarchical regression analyses predicting fame factors from Need to Belong, Narcissism, and Relatedness.
Variable Fame factor: Visibility Fame factor: Status Fame factor: Prosocial
F-change B SEB bR
F-change B SEB bR
Step 1 .02 3.69
.04 6.25
.01 3.41
Gender .03 .10 .01 .25 .10 .13
.24 .09 .14
Age .01 .01 .14
.01 .00 .16
.00 .00 .05
Step 2 .12 8.29
.09 6.88
.12 10.39
Gender .08 .10 .04 .19 .10 .10 .18 .09 .10
Age .01 .01 .07 .01 .01 .12
.00 .00 .05
NTB .24 .05 .26
.19 .05 .20
.15 .04 .18
Narcissism .05 .02 .14
.04 .02 .11
.01 .02 .02
Relatedness .03 .06 .03 .05 .06 .05 .27 .05 .28
Note: NTB = Need to Belong; gender is coded such that males are the reference.
p< .05.
Age was inversely corre lated with Visibility, r(361) = .14, p< .01; Status,
r(361) = .14, p< .01; Fame Fantasy, r(368) = .17, p= .001; Fame Realism,
r(369) = .18, p< .001; Narcissism, r(369) = .22, p< .001 and NTB, r(368) = .15,
p< .01.
D. Greenwood et al. / Personality and Individual Differences 55 (2013) 490–495 493
self-oriented and prosocial fame motives appear to be relevant to
affiliative goals. However, for this group, fame motives appear con-
fined to fantasy. It is possible that fame fantasizing-and the imag-
ined social worth it confers-provides a soothing escape from
anxieties about inclusion. In the best case, such imaginings may
boost mood and enable rehearsal of competent, valued selves.
However, similar to the questions arising from research on paraso-
cial engagement with media figures (Greenwood & Long, 2011), it
is possible that the allure of fame may inhibit more fruitful ways of
meeting inclusion needs—via strengthening actual relationships
within one’s social network. It is also possible that fame fantasy
may exacerbate the discrepancy between actual and ideal selves
when a more realistic perspective returns. Longitudinal research
is needed to clarify whether fame fantasizing promotes or inter-
feres with well-being.
Narcissism was associated with all aspects of fame except for
using fame for prosocial causes, in step with prior work (Maltby’s
2010). More narcissistic individuals were focused on the recogni-
tion and elite status that fame confers, and believed future fame
to be more realistic than their less narcissistic counterparts.
Although those scoring higher on narcissism admit to being egotis-
tical and vain, and those scoring high on belongingness needs ad-
mit that they feel unhappy to be left out or alone, both groups
appear to share a common need to be seen and valued on a large
scale. Further, although the two constructs were not correlated in
this study, findings shed light on the implied social vulnerability
that may accompany narcissism and also help elucidate visibility
needs that may underlie belongingness needs. Whether an interest
in fame ultimately perpetuates this vulnerability is an important
question for future research.
Individuals scoring high on relatedness (inversely correlated
with narcissism) only showed an increased interest in prosocial
fame—using fame to benefit close others (e.g., helping friends/fam-
ily financially) or generalized others (e.g., using fame to advance a
cause). It is intuitive that individuals who are securely nested with-
in social networks would also report a high interest in using fame
to help others. More difficult to interpret, however, are the lack of
significant associations with other dimensions of fame appeal. At a
minimum, individuals high on Relatedness may not feel compelled
or reviled by the idea of fame. Future work is needed to clarify
these possibilities.
Age was inversely related to the fame variables, as well as nar-
cissism and the need to belong. A fascination with fame may
emerge early in life, as adolescents struggle with identity and
belonging. Markus and Nurius’s (1986) seminal work on possible
selves documents the widespread tendency for young people to
imagine that a future self is a ‘‘media personality’’ (vs. a janitor,
for example). Further, Uhls and Greenfield (2012) found that a de-
sire for fame was the most popular future goal among 10–12 year
olds, overshadowing hopes for achievement and community feel-
ing. They note that the developmental preoccupations regarding
‘‘peer acceptance’’ that characterizes early adolescence might
make the social recognition that comes with fame all the more
appealing (p. 954). Although the patterns we identified between
self-concept and fame remained significant after accounting for
age, future research should continue to focus on the role of fame
appeal and self-concept among younger individuals.
Women scored higher than men on the status and prosocial
fame appeals and on belonging needs. While the latter two may re-
flect an increased affiliative focus among women, the status link
was unexpected and merits replication. It is possible that women
are more often targeted by materialistic media norms than men
(e.g., having an expensive/fashionable wardrobe), which may in-
crease attunement to and appeal of elite status.
Our study is limited by the self-report nature of the items, as
well as by the use of a non-traditional single-item scale to measure
narcissism. However, the latter has been used successfully numer-
ous times (Konrath et al., 2013) and showed expected associations
with key study variables in the present study. Our measure of fame
appeal was similar to Maltby’s (2010), but it was also distinct in
some key ways. Although we similarly identified an other-oriented
basis for fame appeal, our factor analysis resulted in a division be-
tween the appeal of being recognized and valued, and the appeal of
a high status lifestyle, which Maltby’s (2010) scale had combined
into one ‘‘celebrity lifestyle’’ dimension. As noted earlier, we also
opted to frame items in terms of general fame appeal to capture
a more normative vs. personal investment in fame. Both scales
may have utility in different contexts; we are eager to pursue
and encourage future refinement and/or elaboration of fame
Ultimately, we believe this is a fruitful and understudied area of
psychological research. Individuals’ affinity for fame tells us not
only about its perceived social psychological value, but about the
perceived social psychological value of an individual’s self-concept.
The desire to ‘‘light up the sky like a flame,’’ as the lyrics to the hit
song/musical, Fame, suggest, may reflect both the basic human
need to be seen and valued, and the extent to which such needs
are salient or unmet for a given individual.
Many thanks are due to Kent Harber for his early enthusiasm
and input on this research project.
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... Thus, to enhance their social status and to promote their self-importance and specialness (Sedikides et al., 2013), narcissistic individuals are attracted to external rewards (e.g., material wealth and fame). Greenwood, Long and Dal Cin (2013) suggested that narcissistic individuals seek the recognition and elite status that fame confers and consider that future fame is more realistic. Thus, the interest in fame alongside with increased appeal of visibility and status makes narcissistic individuals to spend more time engaged in fame fantasy (Greenwood et al., 2013). ...
... Greenwood, Long and Dal Cin (2013) suggested that narcissistic individuals seek the recognition and elite status that fame confers and consider that future fame is more realistic. Thus, the interest in fame alongside with increased appeal of visibility and status makes narcissistic individuals to spend more time engaged in fame fantasy (Greenwood et al., 2013). Moreover, fame is associated with social recognition, richness, professional success, and attractive appearance, highly promoted extrinsic goals which people automatically associate with personal happiness (Gountas, Gountas, Reeves & Moran, 2012). ...
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Communal narcissists amplify their prosocial traits and consider themselves saintly individuals. However, communal narcissistic self-enhancement can foster or block one’s willingness to be actively involved in the workplace or in solving tasks by making a systematic effort. The present study explored the relationship between communal narcissistic features (i.e., present, and future-related thoughts), self-motives (i.e., self-leadership, power-seeking, and desire for fame), and work effort among a convenience sample composed of university students (N = 489). We analyzed three parallel mediation models to assess the indirect effect of communal narcissistic features on work effort via self-motives. Results indicated that communal narcissism positively correlated with self-motives and work effort. Moreover, communal narcissistic and present-future-related thoughts had similar indirect associations with work effort through self-leadership strategies, desire for power, and fame. The relationship between communal narcissistic features, self-motives, and work effort can have important implications for organizations, which were discussed.
... For instance, previous research (Konrath et al., 2016) has found that narcissism scores were the highest for people who posted a video online of their alleged prosocial behavior ("ALS ice bucket challenge") while not additionally donating money for prosocial purposes in relation to comparison groups (e.g., those who only donated money but did not post a potentially attention-grabbing online video). Moreover, Greenwood et al. (2013) found high narcissism to be associated with motivations for and fantasies about being famous but not associated with prosocial motivations. Another relevant point is that higher narcissism was related to higher left-/right-wing authoritarianism and a stronger orientation toward social dominance in past research (Krispenz & Bertrams, 2022;Pincus et al., 2009;Raskin & Terry, 1988;Zeigler-Hill et al., 2021). ...
... We argue that victimized and potentially threatened people should know that narcissistic individuals could be attracted to be involved in antisexual assault activism. Given the ego-focused, low empathic, and occasionally pseudoprosocial nature of narcissism (Greenwood et al., 2013;Hepper et al., 2014;Jankowiak-Siuda & Zajkowski, 2013;Konrath et al., 2016), we highly doubt that such activists primarily have the best interest for concerned people in mind. ...
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In this preregistered study, we tested the dark ego vehicle principle. This principle says that individuals with dark personalities, such as high narcissistic traits, are inclined to get involved in certain kinds of ideology and political activism. We argue that narcissistic individuals can be attracted to anti-sexual assault activism, because this form of activism may provide them with opportunities for positive self-presentation (e.g., virtue signaling), gaining status, dominating others, and engaging in social conflicts to get their thrills. A diverse US sample (N = 313) completed online measures of narcissistic traits and involvement in anti-sexual assault activism. In addition, relevant covariates were assessed (i.e., age, gender, adult sexual assault history, sexual harassment myth acceptance, and altruism), and the interaction between narcissistic traits and gender was considered. The results of multiple regression analysis show that higher narcissistic traits predicted an individual’s higher involvement in anti-sexual assault activism over and above the covariates. However, this relationship was evident only for the women in this sample. Notably, higher level of altruism in an individual was also substantially associated with higher involvement in anti-sexual assault activism. We discuss how the narcissism-by-gender interaction may be in line with the dark ego vehicle principle.
... Walau bagaimanapun, tanpa autonomi, kecekapan tidak akan berfungsi dengan baik kerana seseorang itu tidak mungkin dapat menunjukkan minat dan keyakinan untuk melakukan sesuatu perkara tanpa autonomi atau kebebasan (Joussemet, Landry, & Koestner, 2008). Komponen ketiga yang melengkapi keperluan psikologi adalah keterkaitan (Relatedness), iaitu kepentingan hubungan sosial di tempat kerja terbina melalui interaksi dengan faktor persekitaran (Sheldon, Abad, & Hinsch, 2011) seperti antara rakan sekerja atau atasan (Greenwood, Long, & Dal Cin, 2013). Ia juga dikaitkan dengan perasaan positif dan penghargaan yang dapat dirasai dan difahami oleh individu tersebut (Sheldon & Gunz, 2009). ...
... Celebrities often add psychological motives to the media to create room for discussion and the recognition of being liked (Caughey, 1984). Greenwood et al. (2013) also noted that being recognized in public and having a greater sense of belonging and self-obsession in social networks can cause more online interactions and the effect of being noticed. Recognition brings a sense of cult that is indicative of the role that has become the product of modern social communication media (Giles, 2000). ...
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The global impact of COVID-19 has seriously affected health and livelihood in every country or region, especially in terms of physical consumption behaviors. Hairdressing is an essential physical consumption behavior. To prevent infection, the consumption model for using the beauty industry matchmaking platform (BIMP) has been used during the pandemic. This study investigates the changes in the behavior of media app users in the beauty industry in the post-epidemic era of COVID-19. The COM-B model is the basis for a research framework to study the factors that affect changes in behavior in the areas of Capability, Motivation, and Opportunity of the theoretical framework. A new dimension of fashion sense has expanded the application and validation of the COM-B model to determine the causal relationship between the ability to pursue beauty, motivation, fashion sense, and opportunities by using the platform and the dimension of user behavior. The study finds that fashion sense in the BIMP has a positive and significant impact on beauty care ability, self-motivation to pursue beauty and future cooperation opportunities. The ability, motivation and opportunity to act are all positively significant, which is in agreement with the theoretical framework of the COM-B model. There is no mediating effect for motivation between fashion sense and behavior. The results of this study show that increasing the sense of fashion for members using the BIMP will increases active behavior for members using the platform. This study also proposes practical suggestions for the operation of the BIMP based on the results.
... However, learning some norms and values that make it possible for the individual to live together and regulate themselves develops in the process of socialization. It is imperative to examine the basic needs of individuals, since primitive society belongs in this respect (Greenwood et al. 2013). Belonging can be associated with a conscious state in the process of identity construction, as well as being understood as an important need and emotion developed in the individual's self. ...
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This ethnographic study aims to examine Syrian students' various experiences with belonging and identity while studying at Eastern Mediterranean University. The main objective of this study, which consists of the experiences of a sample group of students, is to examine in detail the subject of belonging and identity. The model of the study is ethnographic research, one of the qualitative research methods. Ten Syrian students participated in the fieldwork. The interviews were analyzed with a thematic analysis approach. As a result of the study, we see that Syrian students emphasize the similarities between the TRNC and Syria, such as food and climatic structure. However, in addition to this positive similarity, we found that differences in language and culture stressed the students. The relationship between Syrian culture and some of the variables, about both belonging and identity, is examined in detail and the results are given in the light of the literature as a result of this study.
... Prior studies have also found a positive correlation between higher NTB and increased parasocial relationships with media celebrities (Greenwood & Long, 2011). Greenwood et al. (2013) have suggested that people high in NTB may be particularly attracted to celebrity and popularity because of the social validation they offer. Similarly, Escalas and Bettman (2017) have argued that engagement with social media influencers can help high NTB consumers to build desired social identities and connect with others by signaling socially relevant meanings to others. ...
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Previous studies have mainly demonstrated negative consequences for content labeled as sponsored. Despite this, recent industry findings indicate a growing trend for sponsored content on social media. In addition, an increasing number of users suggest that such paid content would increase their likelihood of purchasing items from social media. Nonetheless, little attention has been paid to what drives consumers’ purchase intention and engagement with sponsored content with a clear disclaimer such as “Paid Partnership.” Therefore, the present research seeks to provide insights into what drives consumer engagement and purchase intention with sponsored content and when and why such effects are observed. Conducted with an online survey, the results showed that individuals with high materialism showed greater purchase intent and higher engagement with sponsored content through hedonic enjoyment. The results also showed that the mediating role of hedonic engagement for the positive effect of materialism on purchase intent was only significant under high influencer trust. Furthermore, the mediating role of hedonic enjoyment was amplified when the need to belong was high.
With ‘discovery of self’ (Chap. 4), Homo sapiens was launched on a trajectory of genetic and cultural evolution (Chaps. 5 and 6) unlike any other in the history of life. Building on primitive instincts for survival and reproduction inherited from proto-humans (and shared with other animals), this evolutionary journey gave us adaptive motivations and behaviours—many of which are uniquely human—associated with Survival Drive (Chap. 8) and Sexual/Familial Drives (Chap. 7) (Box 9.1).
Narcissism has long been associated with diminished sexual and overall relationship satisfaction, but this association has not been investigated in the larger context of sexual function/dysfunction, also known to affect these outcome variables. Using a multivariate approach, this study investigated the relationships among sexual narcissism, sexual function/dysfunction, and sexual and overall relationship satisfaction in 1297 men completing an online survey about sexual history, sexual health, sexual function/dysfunction, and narcissism. Results indicated widespread differences on various sexual parameters between narcissistic and non-narcissistic men, with narcissistic men showing higher sexualization overall as well as higher auto-erotic orientation. Higher sexual narcissism was also significantly associated with various symptoms of sexual impairment, including a propensity toward both premature ejaculatory response and delayed ejaculatory response. Despite this association, both sexual narcissism and sexual function/dysfunction scores also independently predicted sexual and overall relationship satisfaction. Discussion focuses in part on explaining how two diametrically opposed sexual problems—rapid ejaculation and delayed/inhibited ejaculation—might play out sequentially in the sexual relationships of narcissistic men.
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This study was undertaken to (i) identify the relationship among personality traits, self-esteem and desire for fame and (ii) to explore the relationship of personality traits and self-esteem in prediction of desire for fame in TikTok makers. The sample was recruited through the snowball technique and consisted of 200 TikTok makers of Pakistan. The following internationally standardized scales were used: The Big Five Inventory, The Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale (1965) and The Desire for Fame Scale. A significant positive correlation was found between (1) openness, (2) extroversion, (3) agreeableness, (4) conscientiousness, (5) self-esteem and (6) desire for fame. Additionally, neuroticism correlated negatively with the six mentioned variables; and self-esteem significantly predicted desire for fame. Females scored higher in extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness and self-esteem; whereas males scored higher in neuroticism. Also, higher levels of self-esteem and desire for fame were found in those who had increased frequency of making TikTok videos and those who belonged to big cities. In conclusion, personality traits, self-esteem and desire for fame significantly correlate with each
In recent years, celebrity and entertainment culture has grown significantly and spread widely among people of all ages. Fans have displayed their love and passion for famous people and a strong desire to follow their every move. Devotees are becoming increasingly more willing to offer their time and money, with some peoples worship of celebrities reaching the point of obsession. As such, the topic of celebrity worship has gradually gained notice in the fields of sociology, psychology, marketing and others. However, current research on celebrity worship is still relatively scattered and lacks systematic analysis. Therefore, this article will investigate and discuss the concept and dimensions of celebrity worship, including its methods, influencing factors and results from a multi-disciplinary perspective, to provide a good theoretical basis for future researchers.
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For many years, the prevailing view held that aggression and violence stem from low self-esteem. Despite this apparent consensus, neither a compelling theoretical rationale nor a persuasive body of empirical evidence existed to support this view. The current empirical evidence shows that aggressive and violent individuals often have inflated, narcissistic self-views. Narcissistic individuals are especially aggressive when they suffer an ego threat.
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Main Objectives The narcissistic personality is characterized by grandiosity, entitlement, and low empathy. This paper describes the development and validation of the Single Item Narcissism Scale (SINS). Although the use of longer instruments is superior in most circumstances, we recommend the SINS in some circumstances (e.g. under serious time constraints, online studies). Methods In 11 independent studies (total N = 2,250), we demonstrate the SINS' psychometric properties. Results The SINS is significantly correlated with longer narcissism scales, but uncorrelated with self-esteem. It also has high test-retest reliability. We validate the SINS in a variety of samples (e.g., undergraduates, nationally representative adults), intrapersonal correlates (e.g., positive affect, depression), and interpersonal correlates (e.g., aggression, relationship quality, prosocial behavior). The SINS taps into the more fragile and less desirable components of narcissism. Significance The SINS can be a useful tool for researchers, especially when it is important to measure narcissism with constraints preventing the use of longer measures.
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The present study uses an interpersonal relationships measure (Relationship Rating Form [RRF], Fraley & Davis, 1997) to assess both imagined intimacy with a favorite media figure and real intimacy with close others among 173 undergraduates. We examine how relational tendencies (attachment style, need to belong) and relationship status (single or partnered) interact to predict degree of imagined intimacy with same and opposite gender media figures. Results indicate that intimacy reported with a same gender friend is positively correlated with imagined intimacy for a same gender media figure. However, a compensatory pattern emerged with romantic relationships: single individuals reported greater imagined intimacy with opposite gender media figures than those in a relationship. Attachment anxiety and the need to belong (NTB) were positively predictive of imagined intimacy with opposite gender media figures for single individuals only. Social psychological motivations for media attachments are discussed.
Although the appeal of fame in society seems to be increasing, experimental research has yet to examine the motivations that may underlie this apparent appeal. As a first step toward doing so, we conducted three studies to assess whether concerns with mortality play a role in these phenomena. Based on terror management theory and research, we hypothesized that reminders of death would increase people's desire for fame and admiration of celebrities. In Study 1, mortality salience led participants to report greater desire for fame. In Study 2, mortality salience produced greater interest in having a star in the galaxy named after oneself. In Study 3, mortality salience increased liking for abstract art when it was attributed to a celebrity. These findings suggest that the appeal of fame is based in part on the desire for symbolic continuance beyond death. Discussion focused on the implications of these findings and remaining issues.
Empirical research and organismic theories suggest that lower well-being is associated with having extrinsic goals focused on rewards or praise relatively central to one's personality in comparison to intrinsic goals congruent with inherent growth tendencies. In a sample of adult subjects (Study 1), the relative importance and efficacy of extrinsic aspirations for financial success, an appealing appearance, and social recognition were associated with lower vitality and self-actualization and more physical symptoms. Conversely, the relative importance and efficacy of intrinsic aspirations for self-acceptance, affiliation, community feeling, and physical health were associated with higher well-being and less distress. Study 2 replicated these findings in a college sample and extended them to measures of narcissism and daily affect. Three reasons are discussed as to why extrinsic aspirations relate negatively to well-being, and future research directions are suggested.