Many studies have shown that guilt is an important moral emotion that motivates reparative actions in orderto maintain positive interpersonal relationships. However, when the victim of an offence does not have a closerelationship with the transgressor or when the intensity of the whole experience is irrelevant or excessive,people can adopt different strategies to cope with their feelings of guilt. The paper aims to investigate therelation between interpersonal relationships, responsibility taking elicited by moral transgressions and copingstrategies. Results show that experiences of guilt vary on the basis of the degree of closeness with theharmed person. The closeness of the relational bond between transgressor and victim also affects the globalintensity of the experience of guilt (made of a set of correlated emotions), thus favoring the choice of selfor other-oriented strategies to cope with guilt. Global low intensities of guilt tend to favor self-orientedstrategies, while wrongdoings that elicit high emotional intensities are often considered too serious andthus irreparable. Medium intensities of guilt experiences are more frequently managed through adaptive,other-oriented strategies.

How Relational Bonds Influence Strategies for Coping with Guilt

NENCINI, Alessio;MENEGHINI, Anna Maria
2013

Abstract

Many studies have shown that guilt is an important moral emotion that motivates reparative actions in orderto maintain positive interpersonal relationships. However, when the victim of an offence does not have a closerelationship with the transgressor or when the intensity of the whole experience is irrelevant or excessive,people can adopt different strategies to cope with their feelings of guilt. The paper aims to investigate therelation between interpersonal relationships, responsibility taking elicited by moral transgressions and copingstrategies. Results show that experiences of guilt vary on the basis of the degree of closeness with theharmed person. The closeness of the relational bond between transgressor and victim also affects the globalintensity of the experience of guilt (made of a set of correlated emotions), thus favoring the choice of selfor other-oriented strategies to cope with guilt. Global low intensities of guilt tend to favor self-orientedstrategies, while wrongdoings that elicit high emotional intensities are often considered too serious andthus irreparable. Medium intensities of guilt experiences are more frequently managed through adaptive,other-oriented strategies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/627262
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