LCSR Associate Researcher
Rudnev, M., Lytkina, E., Davidov, E., Schmidt, P., Zick, A. (2018). Testing Measurement Invariance for a Second-Order Factor: A Cross-National Test of the Alienation Scale. Methods, data, analyses 12(1). ― P. 47-76.
Lytkina, E. (2015). Anomie And Alienation In The Post-Communist Area: A Reapplication Of The Middleton Scale In Russia And Kazakhstan. Working Papers by NRU Higher School of Economics. Series: Psychology, WP BRP 32/PSY/2015.
Lytkina, E. (2012). Performative Solidarities as a Means of Creating "Good Values". Values, Stratification, Transformation. ― Plzen: Vydavatelstvi a nakladatelstvi Ales Cenek. P. 94-104.
The Impact of the Perceptions of Relative Deprivation on Populist Attitudes
The project proposes at the individual level an explanation of the unprecedented rise of populism in European countries that is observed in the last decades. I aim at integrating a variety of separate predictors which were previously found to be related to populist attitudes - such as feelings of relative deprivation, political efficacy, and emotions - into a synthetic model explaining how people can get populist attitudes. I use social comparisons with ingroup and outgroup members and the situation of perceived injustice to induce perceptions of relative deprivation. I expect that the perception of relative deprivation would arouse emotional reactions and lower the political efficacy, thus, leading to a higher level of populist attitudes. This study is one of the first ones to test the causal effect of perceived relative deprivation and its consequences on populist attitudes, and, particularly, to address the role of emotions in this process. I use online and laboratory experiments with students and adults.
Alienation and Group-Focused Enmity in the European Context (2014-2015; in cooperation with Andreas Zick)
In the project, I address the association between alienation and prejudice. I use three key theoretical constructs of alienation after Seeman (1959), which are powerlessness, meaninglessness, and social isolation. To address prejudice, I use the concept of group-focused enmity syndrome (Heitmeyer 2000, Zick et al. 2011). The syndrome of group-focused enmity encloses prejudices towards immigrants, Muslims, Jews, as well as racism, sexism and homophobia. Drawing on the concept of disintegration, developed by Heitmeyer (1997), I claim that alienation can be viewed as a predictor of prejudice towards outgroups. The disability to influence politics may lead to treating outgroups as scapegoats. Migrants or people of different lifestyles may be blamed for eroding norms and values in the society (Zick et al. 2011: 141). The lack of social connectedness or, more generally, cohesion, may lead that outgroups might be treated in terms of Parsons “instrumentally”. I use the data of the project “Group-Focused Enmity” carried out in 2008 in eight European countries. Using OLS regressions with interaction effects for countries, I show that alienation is such a strong predictor of the group-focused enmity as authoritarianism (Adorno et. al 1950) and social dominance (Kuepper et. Al. 2010), and a better predictor than anomia, which was applied in literature (Zick et al. 2011: 147). The effect of alienation on group-focused enmity was stronger and similar in Germany, Great Britain, and Netherlands. Another pattern (with a weaker effect) was observed in Hungary and Portugal.
Anomie in the Post-Communist Area: Reapplication of the Middleton Scale and its Modification
Unlike commonly used, anomie and alienation not only have different theoretical backgrounds, but also different indicators and predictors. I examine the highly institutionalized alienation scale originally introduced by Middleton (1963), reapplied as a measurement of alienation (Seeman, 1991) and anomie (Huschka and Mau 2005, 2006) in a very relevant context for an anomic situation – the post-Communist countries Russia and Kazakhstan (round six of the World Values Surveys fielded the alienation question in just these two countries). Based on confirmatory factor analysis and multiple group comparisons, I find that the scale consists of two dimensions, which can be described as an anomie and alienation. The anomic dimension consists of indicators “normlessness” and “powerlessness,” whereas the alienative one is comprised by “social isolation”, “meaninglessness,” and “job dissatisfaction.” Though the structure proves to have full invariance in both countries, the predictors for anomie and alienation are different. For both countries, only income is an important predictor for anomie, and though to a lower degree, for alienation. In Kazakhstan, the level of urbanization also provides an impact on the level of anomie. Apart from income, in Russia alienation can be predicted by gender, and type of occupation (manual or intellectual), whereas in Kazakhstan it can be predicted by age.
Academic interests: social theory, methodology of social research, perceived relative deprivation, emotions, anomie, alienation, experiments.
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