This study investigated whether the tactics of ingratiation found by Jones and others in highly controlled laboratory experiments are used in freer social situations. Subjects were told either to get a person of the opposite sex to (1) like them or (2) dislike them, or (3) were given no instructions (control condition). Fifteen-minute discussions were tape recorded and categorized. Results showed that compared with the controls, subjects attempting to gain the esteem of another were unsuccessful and their behavior did not differ from the control subjects. Subjects attempting to get another to deslike them were successful, and differed from subjects in the other conditions primarily in their greater use of non-conformity and statements critical of the other. The results were interpreted to indicate that ingratiation behaviors are demanded in part by cultural norms, and that it is the presence or absence of the opposites of these behaviors that determine one's gain or loss of esteem.
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