Explaining effervescence: Shared social identity and positive experience in crowds

Steve Reicher, Nick Hopkins, Sammyh Khan, Shruti Tewari, Narayanan Srinivasan, Clifford Stevenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We develop and test a dual pathway model of effervescence - the intensely positive experience of being in a crowd. The model proposes that positive feelings arise when those attending a mass event see each other as sharing a common social identity. This sense of shared identity predicts (a) crowd participants’ ability to enact their valued collective identity, and (b) the intimacy of social relations between crowd members. In turn, both of these are theorized to predict crowd members’ positivity of experience. These ideas are tested using survey data from pilgrims (n = 416) attending the Magh Mela - a month-long Hindu pilgrimage festival in north India. The findings provide clear support for the model.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages22
JournalPsychological Science
Publication statusIn preparation - 2013


Dive into the research topics of 'Explaining effervescence: Shared social identity and positive experience in crowds'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this