ERIC Number: ED072361
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1972-Apr
Reference Count: 0
The Effects of Guilt-Shame Arousing Communications on Attitudes and Behavior.
Dembroski, Theodore M.; Pennebaker, James W.
Two studies sought to investigate two levels (high vs. low) of guilt-shame arousing appeals in the areas of adoption and needy children on expressed guilt, attitudes toward the communicator and communication, information retention, and intended and actual commitment to various behaviors. Subjects were 68 adult men and women drawn from Presbyterian Sunday schools and women's clubs. A tape recorded-slide format served as the means of presentation. The high-guilt arousing message vividly portrayed the undesirable physical, emotional, and intellectual consequences of neglection on unwanted children. The low-guilt message was similar in content and length but utilized less "emotional" language and pictures. Both messages concluded with identical recommendations. The manipulation checks on guilt arousal were significant in the predicted direction. No significant differences were obtained between conditions on information retention or attitudes toward the speaker or the communication. Generally low guilt was found to be significantly more effective in persuading subjects to comply with the recommendations of the message for intended but not actual behavior. (Author)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Southwestern Psychological Association Meeting, April 20-22, 1972, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma