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Title: Shame in adolesence : a twin study
Author: Sterne, Abram
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2002
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There is increasing research interest in the role of shame-based emotions in psychopathological conditions such as anxiety and depression. To date, there have been few studies examining the experience of shame in adolescence. Adolescence is a time of dynamically shifting transitions from childhood into the adult world. Although the seeds of our biological, emotional, social and cognitive selves begin developing in childhood, the impact of growth can be seen most dramatically in the teenage years. This thesis is particularly interested in the role of shame emotions that can often be a by-product of the developing self-identity of adolescence. Anxiety and depression often occur in the turmoil of the teenage years, and shame may be major contributory factor to such feelings. The first aim of the study was to explore the structure of shame in adolescents. The second aim was to explore the relationships between shame and mood state (i.e., anxiety and depression) and other measures including body weight, life event, and attributional style. It is possible that shame processes themselves are genetically influenced, and are constituent factors in the heritability of depression and anxiety. Thus the third aim of this study was to investigate whether there would be any genetic influences for shame. A questionnaire was sent to a community-based sample of nearly 3,000 adolescents aged 12-19 years. Included in this sample were 850 twin pairs, and 276 sibling pairs. Their responses to the questionnaire were used to examine the genetic and environmental influences for shame, and relationship of shame to symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available