Toward a unified theory of objectification and dehumanization

Sarah J. Gervais, Philippe Bernard, Olivier Klein, Jill Allen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

60 Scopus citations


Objectification and dehumanization represent motivational conundrums because they are phenomena in which people are seen in ways that are fundamentally inaccurate; seeing people as objects, as animals, or not as people. The purpose of the 60th Nebraska Symposium on Motivation was to examine the motivational underpinnings of objectification and dehumanization of the self and others. To provide an overall context for this volume, we first provide classic conceptualizations of objectification and dehumanization and speculate about relations between the two. We then introduce a unified theory of objectification and dehumanization within the global versus local processing model (GLOMO) and provide initial supporting evidence. Finally, we introduce the chapters in this volume, which provide additional significant and novel motivational perspectives on objectification and dehumanization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationObjectification and (De)Humanization
Subtitle of host publication60th Nebraska Symposium on Motivation
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media, LLC
Number of pages23
ISBN (Print)9781461469582
StatePublished - 2013

Publication series

NameNebraska Symposium on Motivation
ISSN (Print)0146-7875


  • Anthropomorphism
  • Body recognition
  • Dehumanization
  • Discrimination
  • Gender
  • Global versus local processing model
  • Infra-humanization
  • Motivation
  • Objectification
  • Self-objectification
  • Sexual body parts
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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