Social values essentially describe our ideas about good life. A social psychological study of values aims to take into account the role of individual choices as well as that of social forces in their formation, structure, and function. Values are socially shared and binding and thus more than mere conscious preferences that can instantly change. There is growing evidence that individuals are able to endorse multiple value systems and identities across different fields of interaction. Despite these concerns, much study of social values is undertaken by collapsing them into relationships that are binary (either/or) and rigid, removed from specific contexts. These approaches prioritize questions about universal validation and consistency in value systems. Reintroducing the “social” in the conceptualization and research of values is crucial in addressing the issue of variability in their formation, function, and structure.
Social values are standards that people use...
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