Experiencing Acknowledgment Versus Denial of the Ingroup’s Collective Victimization

Michelle Sinayobye Twali, Boaz Hameiri, Johanna Ray Vollhardt, Arie Nadler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter examines the psychological dimensions and consequences of acknowledgment versus denial of the in-group’s collective victimization. Denial can entail different forms and be literal, interpretative, or implicatory. Likewise, acknowledgment can entail factual acknowledgment, empathic acknowledgment, or even the perpetrator group’s possession of a negative identity. The authors discuss why and how these different forms of acknowledgment and denial matter, the societal means through which acknowledgment versus denial can occur, whose acknowledgment (e.g., perpetrator group vs. third parties) is most relevant in which context, and which events are most important to acknowledge. The chapter reviews findings demonstrating that acknowledgment can improve psychological well-being and intergroup attitudes, while lack of acknowledgment has the opposite effect. The underlying psychological processes that have been studied so far include identity, processes related to the groups’ relationship (e.g., trust), concerns over justice, and affective processes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Social Psychology of Collective Victimhood
EditorsJohanna Ray Vollhardt
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9780190875213
ISBN (Print)9780190875190
StatePublished - 2020


  • acknowledgment
  • commemorations
  • denial
  • memorials
  • possession of a negative identity
  • reconciliation
  • reparations


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