The Effects of Mortality Salience on Disgust Sensitivity Among University Students, Older Adults, and Mortuary Students
Jonathan F. Bassett1, *, Michael E. Sonntag2
Identifiers and Pagination:Year: 2010
First Page: 1
Last Page: 8
Publisher ID: TOPSYJ-3-1
Article History:Received Date: 24/08/2009
Revision Received Date: 25/10/2009
Acceptance Date: 15/11/2009
Electronic publication date: 9/1/2010
Collection year: 2010
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode). This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
The present study tested the Terror Management perspective on disgust by examining the effects of mortality salience on disgust sensitivity among 137 university students, 48 older adults, and 44 mortuary students preparing for a career in the funeral service industry. Participants were randomly assigned to a mortality salience, uncertainty salience, or television salience induction. Following a delay, participants completed the core disgust and contamination disgust subscales of the Disgust Scale Revised. University students reported more core disgust than did older adults and mortuary students. Women reported more core and contamination disgust than did men. Mortality salience led to increased disgust sensitivity among all three groups but only on a small number of items related to animals. The results suggest a limited role of terror management defenses in the experience of disgust in response to stimuli that remind people of their animal nature.