The present study explored temporal and self/other dimensions of death attitudes among young adults. One hundred seventy-two undergraduate students were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 conditions: writing about one's death (age unspecified), one's death as a young adult, the death of another (age unspecified), or the death of other as a young adult. Results indicated that the death of another, but not of oneself, was associated with more realistic considerations of death (e.g., pain, negative emotions). In addition, participants who wrote about death at an early age were less likely to describe their own deaths with negative emotion or to discuss physiological aspects of death and were less likely to express romanticized notions of death. Implications of these results for death anxiety research are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Clinical Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)