ERIC Number: EJ970249
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Elevation in Response to Entertainment Portrayals of Moral Virtue
Oliver, Mary Beth; Hartmann, Tilo; Woolley, Julia K.
Human Communication Research, v38 n3 p360-378 Jul 2012
Media psychologists have long puzzled over how individuals can experience enjoyment from entertainment such as tragedies that often elicit profound feelings of sadness. The present research examines the idea that a focus on "meaningful" entertainment and affective responses identified as "elevation" may provide a framework for understanding many examples of sad or dramatic entertainment. The results of this study suggest that many types of meaningful cinematic entertainment feature portrayals of moral virtues (e.g., altruism). These portrayals, in turn, elicit feelings of elevation (e.g., inspiration) that are signified in terms of mixed affect and unique physical responses (e.g., lump in throat). Ultimately, elevation also gives rise to motivations to embody moral virtues, such as being a better person or helping others.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A