Skip to main content

It’s time to be ashamed! Reactions to the breaking of a long-lasting self-censorship on ingroup war crimes

Leone, G., Giner-Sorolla, R., D’Errico, F., Migliorisi, S., Sessa, I. (2018) It’s time to be ashamed! Reactions to the breaking of a long-lasting self-censorship on ingroup war crimes. Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology, 25 . pp. 519-535. ISSN 1972-6325. (doi:10.4473/TPM25.4.4) (KAR id:71841)

PDF Publisher pdf
Language: English

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Download (444kB) Preview
PDF Author's Accepted Manuscript
Language: English

Restricted to Repository staff only
Contact us about this Publication
Official URL


This study explores the reactions of Italian university students to information about colonial crimes perpetrated by the Italian Army during the invasion of Ethiopia (1935-36), events that are still self-censored in intergenerational narratives. Participants reported their emotions about the Italian colonial past and their knowledge of this historical period was examined. Then they read a parrhesic (i.e., straightforward) or, alternatively, an evasive narrative of crimes committed in Ethiopia in 1935-36 and, once again, reported related emotions. A week later, they evaluated the crimes’ seriousness, reported for the third time their emotions about Italy’s colonial past, and declared their moral shame, social shame, and guilt for colonial crimes. Finally, they expressed their support for reparative actions. As expected, the vast majority of participants knew little about past misdeeds. Participants presented with a parrhesic narrative were more able to acknowledge older generations’ responsibilities and to distance themselves morally from them. Moral and social shame, outrage, and a reduced sense of pride, rather than guilt or anger, predicted support for reparations. The limitations of the present study, and future research perspectives, are discussed.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.4473/TPM25.4.4
Uncontrolled keywords: Italian colonial crimes; Self-censorship; Parrhesia; Moral emotions; Intergroup reconciliation
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology > Social Psychology
Depositing User: Roger Giner-Sorolla
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2019 15:17 UTC
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2020 23:00 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Giner-Sorolla, R.:
  • Depositors only (login required):


Downloads per month over past year