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Contempt: Derogating Others While Keeping Calm

Fischer, Agneta H., Giner-Sorolla, Roger (2016) Contempt: Derogating Others While Keeping Calm. Emotion Review, 8 (4). pp. 346-357. ISSN 1754-0739. E-ISSN 1754-0747. (doi:10.1177/1754073915610439) (KAR id:53643)


While philosophers have discussed the emotion of contempt from antiquity to the present day, contempt has received less attention in psychological research. We review the defining features of contempt, both as a short-term emotion and as a more long lasting sentiment. Contempt is similar to anger in that it may occur after (repeated) social or moral transgressions, but it differs from anger in its appraisals, actions and emotivational goals. Unlike anger, contempt arises when a person’s or group’s character is appraised as bad and unresponsive to change, leading to attempts to socially exclude the target. We discuss associative, self-regulatory and social distancing functions of contempt and present a dynamic social model of contempt versus anger.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1177/1754073915610439
Uncontrolled keywords: contempt, moral emotions, social functions
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Roger Giner-Sorolla
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2016 17:11 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 13:32 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Giner-Sorolla, Roger.

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