A function of form: Terror management and structuring the social world

Mark J. Landau, Michael Johns, Jeff L Greenberg, Andy Martens, Tom Pyszczynski, Jamie L. Goldenberg, Sheldon Solomon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

191 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Drawing on lay epistemology theory (A. W. Kruglanski, 1980, 1989), the authors assessed a terror management analysis (J. Greenberg, S. Solomon, & T. Pyszczynski, 1997) of the psychological function of structuring social information. Seven studies tested variations of the hypothesis that simple, benign interpretations of social information function, in part, to manage death-related anxiety. In Studies 1-4, mortality salience (MS) exaggerated primacy effects and reliance on representative information, decreased preference for a behaviorally inconsistent target among those high in personal need for structure (PNS), and increased high-PNS participants' preference for interpersonal balance. In Studies 5-7, MS increased high-PNS participants' preference for interpretations that suggest a just world and a benevolent causal order of events in the social world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)190-210
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Volume87
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2004

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terrorism
Mortality
mortality
management
interpretation
Anxiety
Psychology
epistemology
anxiety
death
event

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

Landau, M. J., Johns, M., Greenberg, J. L., Martens, A., Pyszczynski, T., Goldenberg, J. L., & Solomon, S. (2004). A function of form: Terror management and structuring the social world. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87(2), 190-210. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.87.2.190

A function of form : Terror management and structuring the social world. / Landau, Mark J.; Johns, Michael; Greenberg, Jeff L; Martens, Andy; Pyszczynski, Tom; Goldenberg, Jamie L.; Solomon, Sheldon.

In: Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 87, No. 2, 08.2004, p. 190-210.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Landau, MJ, Johns, M, Greenberg, JL, Martens, A, Pyszczynski, T, Goldenberg, JL & Solomon, S 2004, 'A function of form: Terror management and structuring the social world', Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 87, no. 2, pp. 190-210. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.87.2.190
Landau, Mark J. ; Johns, Michael ; Greenberg, Jeff L ; Martens, Andy ; Pyszczynski, Tom ; Goldenberg, Jamie L. ; Solomon, Sheldon. / A function of form : Terror management and structuring the social world. In: Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 2004 ; Vol. 87, No. 2. pp. 190-210.
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