Japanese Journal of Social Psychology
Online ISSN : 2189-1338
Print ISSN : 0916-1503
ISSN-L : 0916-1503
Reconsidering the affect-free claim in terror management theory: The effects of a threat of inevitable death on mood
Akihiro ToyaKen’ichiro Nakashima
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2017 Volume 33 Issue 2 Pages 84-92


Our purpose is to examine the affect-free claim in terror management theory. Lambert et al. (2014) reported findings that disconfirm the claim that mortality salience (MS) manipulation does not produce any changes in self-reported affect including negative affect, which is the affect-free claim. As a conceptual replication of their findings, we conducted three studies to examine whether MS manipulation influences self-reported mood. Participants in Study 1 were college students, while Studies 2 and 3 included individuals in their 20s and 50s who were recruited using a web survey. Multiple-choice questions (Studies 1 and 2) and open-ended questions (Study 3) were used as experimental manipulation. Through these three studies, it was shown that MS manipulation elevated negative mood regardless of the experimental manipulation type and participants’ age. In these studies, participants did not demonstrate a cultural worldview defense. Results suggest that we should reconsider the affect-free claim in terror management theory.

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© 2017 The Japanese Society of Social Psychology
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