Social Comparisons by Catherine Dodart

Downward Social Comparison: is a defense strategy that some people use as a way to show self-evaluation. They will look to others or a group who may be worse off in order to dissociate themselves from similarities which end up making them feel better.  The media has oftentimes been found to play a large role in social comparisons.

Studies have shown that in most cases women tend to engage in upward social comparisons with another, which results in more negative feelings about the self. Upward Comparison: is when someone wants others to believe themselves to be part of the elite or superior. The majority of women have a daily opportunity to make upward comparison by measuring themselves against some form of  ideal. Women have reported making upward comparisons in a positive manner for the purposes of self motivation, but the majority of upward comparisons are made when the individual is feeling lesser and therefore evoke a negative display.

There may be times when we know someone like this or have experienced this situation. In the clip below, Penelope tries to outdo anything and everything someone says. She is showing that she wants to be seen as superior to the others in the group.


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