ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2016, Vol. 24 ›› Issue (3): 438-453.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2016.00438

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The concept, measurement, influencing factors and effects of relative deprivation

XIONG Meng1; YE Yiduo2   

  1. (1 School of Education, Yangtze University, Jingzhou 434023, China)
    (2 School of Education, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou 350117, China)
  • Received:2015-05-25 Online:2016-03-15 Published:2016-03-15
  • Contact: YE Yiduo, E-mail:


The concept of relative deprivation (RD) is identified as a kind of subjective cognition and affective experience. It refers to that some individuals or groups perceived themselves at disadvantage circumstances by comparing with the corresponding reference groups, thereby leading them to experience some negative emotions, such as anger and resentment. In previous studies, the main testing models of RD consist of the two-dimension vertical structure model involving individual-group RD and cognitive-affective RD, the dual-dimension structure model of cognitive-affective RD, the two-dimension structure model of individual-group RD, and the three-dimension structure model of RD. In terms of influencing factors, the existing researches have mainly investigated the impacts of demographic variables, individual factors, and social environment factors on RD. As to its outcome variables, previous studies have focused on the effects of RD on interpersonal level outcomes, such as mental health, individual behavior, together with the intergroup level outcomes, such as intergroup attitudes, and collective action. Finally, the improvement of concept and structure research, the study of adolescent and special groups, the broadening of study contents and perspectives, the strengthening of longitudinal and intervention research, as well as localized and cross-cultural research are the trends of study in this field.

Key words: relative deprivation, mental health, individual behavior, intergroup attitudes, collective action