Why Hazing? Measuring the Motivational Mechanisms of Newcomer Induction in College Fraternities

In: Journal of Cognition and Culture
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  • 1 Dyad Strategies, Knoxville, Tennessee
  • 2 University of West Florida, Department of Research & Advanced Studies, Pensacola, Florida
  • 3

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Abstract

Hazing behaviors as a part of group initiations have been theorized to contribute to a sense of group solidarity, to ensure loyalty and commitment of group members, to teach group-relevant skills and attitudes to group members, and to reinforce the social hierarchy within groups. In a survey of members of an international college fraternity (n=2833), researchers propose and test a four-dimensional model of hazing motivation. Using exploratory factor analysis, the proposed four-factor model explains 74 percent of the overall variance and confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated acceptable model fit. Correlation and regression analysis suggested that social dominance- motivated hazing is strongly associated with hazing tolerance, moral disengagement, and a variety of measures related to organizational commitment and attachment.

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