When is bad stronger than good? A construal level theory perspective

Singh, Smita, and Alam, Shehnas (2012) When is bad stronger than good? A construal level theory perspective. In: International Journal of Psychology (47) p. 712. From: 30th International Congress of Psychology, 22-27 July 2012, Cape Town, South Africa.

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The importance of bad or negative life events has been emphasised primarily all across in different domains of psychological literature (Baumeister, Bratslavsky, Finkenauer, & Vohs, 2001). In the present research, this supremacy of negative events was re-examined by adopting a novel method of Construal Level Theory (Trope & Liberman, 2000). In addition, positive life events was also compared and contrasted with the negative life events. Participants responded to 20 positive and negative life event statements in terms of either the event taking place in a near or temporally proximal condition (yesterday) or far or temporally distal condition (one year ago) and whether these life events happened to them or others (social distances). Two hundred and fifty six participants (110 males and 146 females, Mage=24.63, SD=6.08) were randomly assigned to a 2 (temporal distance: proximal vs. distal) x 2 (events: positive vs. negative) x 2 (social distance: self vs. others) mixed-factorial design experiment, where each participant was presented with a Life Perception Scale(LPS). The findings supported the hypotheses that greater psychological distance (temporal and social)indeed leads to decreased positivity and negativity associated in its perception. Further, perception of temporally distal events (both positive and negative) was found to have significantly lesser impact than temporally proximal events. Events (both positive and negative) perceived for another person (socially distal) showed a significant impact reduction as well; perceptions of negative or positive events for another person were indeed considered less positive or negative.

Item ID: 23557
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
ISSN: 1464-066X
Keywords: construal level theory, negativity bias
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 05:44
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170113 Social and Community Psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 100%
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