Terror management and political attitudes: The influence of mortality salience on Germans' defence of the German reunification

Eva Jonas, Jeff L Greenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


From the perspective of terror management theory, reminders of mortality should intensify the desire to maintain faith in one's own cultural worldview. We investigated this notion with regard to attitudes of Germans toward an important political event, the fall of the Berlin wall and German reunification. We found that when reminded of their own death, people with a supportive attitude toward the German reunification showed a more favourable evaluation of a positive essay about the fall of the Berlin wall and a more negative reaction to a critical essay than participants in the control condition. People with a more neutral attitude toward the reunification on the other hand did not show this effect. Practical and theoretical implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Social Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Social Psychology

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