|Title||Existential guilt. Primary data from the longitudinal study 1985.|
|Original Title||Existentielle Schuld. Primärdatensatz der Längsschnitterhebung 1985.|
|Citation||Montada, L., Reichle, B., & Schneider, A. (2004). Existential guilt. Primary data from the longitudinal study 1985. [Translated Title] (Version 1) [Files on CD-ROM]. Trier: Center for Research Data in Psychology: PsychData of the Leibniz Institute for Psychology Information ZPID. https://doi.org/10.5160/psychdata.malo85ex05|
|Language of variable documentation||German|
|Responsible for Data Collection||Montada, Leo; Reichle, Barbara; Schneider, Angela|
|Data Collection Completion Date||1985|
|Study Description||In light of the objective deprivation of different victim groups, demographic data, attitudes, justice preferences, cognitions, emotions, and behavior of 434 adult West Germans were collected in a longitudinal study. Two response patterns were identified: defensive reactions (denial of one's own responsibility for the plight of the disadvantaged, blaming the disadvantaged for their own misery, trivialization of seriousness of the situation, justification of one's own better standing in life, and anger directed toward the disadvantaged) and prosocial reactions (perception of one's responsibility for the plight of the victims, subjective ratings of the unjust situation, recognizing the relationship between one's own privileged standing and the underprivileged situation of the disadvantaged, and existential feelings of guilt). Defensive reactions, stemming from a threat to a belief in a "just world", can be predicated longitudinally. The more people believe in a just world the more derogatory they will react when confronted with those worse off than themselves. This dismissive and derogatory stance toward underprivileged people only strengthens their belief in a just world. Prosocial reactions, however, are motivated more by existential guilt (an unease about the discrepancy between one's own, not always deserved, privileged situation vs the others' unprivileged situation).
The record contains the complete primary data of the interviewed people on both measurement occasions. Relevant derived data are also reported.
|Keyphrase||emotional reactions to victims & disadvantaged persons, existential guilt & moral indignation & sympathy & anger & anxiety, control beliefs & responsibility & belief in a just world, 434 subjects, longitudinal empirical study, primary data|
|Funding||German Research Foundation|
|Rating||The quality criteria are presented in detail by Schneider, Montada, Reichle and Meissner (1986). Implementing objectivity can be seen as a given due to the fully standardized specifications. Reliability ranges from moderate to good. Results concerning validity are not reported.|
|Classification||Motivation & Emotion
Social Processes & Social Issues
Social Perception & Cognition
|Research Method Description||Questionnaire Data|
|Classification of Data Collection||Fully Standardized Survey Instrument (provides question formulation and answer options)|
|Research Instrument||The present study made use survey instruments which had been previously developed by the research group in context of previous studies, though some slight modifications were made (see Montada, Schmitt & Dalbert, 1983; Schneider, Reichle & Montada, 1986).
The survey instrument consists of 14 subunits which were administered at 4 different times. The order was the same at both study times (see the time distribution of the data collection). The following instrument was used: "Demographics Questionnaire Part 1" (Demographiefragebogen Teil 1, or DG2). Taking part in this short questionnaire, which measured age, gender, and number of children, implied consent to participate in the investigation.
"Demographics Questionnaire Part 2" (Demographiefragebogen, or DG3): Covered further demographic data of subjects (university degree, profession, estimation of the probability of their own unemployment or that of their partner, religiosity, income, community size), as well as information on their social and political commitment.
Political activities and objectives (AZ2): To measure subjects' various public policy objectives it was necessary to assess how meaningful each subject viewed their own political action as well as their willingness to commit themselves to this goal. AZ2 and DG3 yielded the final criterion necessary for group formation.
"Existential Guilt Inventory" Part 1 (Existentielle Schuld Inventar Teil 1, or ES2) and Part 2 (ES3): In combination with 9 situations - presenting 3 areas of potential impact (future prospects of young people, living conditions, working conditions and/or psychosocial situation) for people belonging to 3 groups (the unemployed, people from Third World nations, Turkish guest workers) - 8 thoughts/feelings are formulated to represent cognitive and emotional reactions. The situations 1-3 address the future prospects of young members of these 3 groups.
Groups: Situation 1 portrayed Turkish youth, Situation 2 portrayed young people in the Third World, and Situation 3 portrayed unemployed youth in the Federal Republic of Germany. Situations 4-6 dealt with the issues "living conditions": Situation 4 focuses on the housing situation of Turkish guest workers in Germany, Situation 5 the general living and housing conditions of people in the Third World, and Situation 6 addressed housing shortages due to unemployment in West Germany. In Situations 7-8, working conditions of the Turkish guest workers (7) and that of people in the Third World (8) are addressed. Situation 9 focuses on the psycho-social consequences of unemployment.
ES2: Relativization of the situation of the disadvantaged, sloped perception between oneself and the disadvantaged, existential guilt, realization of the unjust difference between oneself and the disadvantaged, justification one's own privileges, blaming those in the situation for the situation itself, self-motivated responsibility to take action, satisfaction with one's own privileges.
ES3: Compassion for the disadvantaged, concern for one's own situation in regards to the social discrepencies, realization of the connection between the plight of the disadvantaged and one's own better social position, fear of privilege loss, anger directed at the disadvantaged, a call to action for those in power, anger at the injustice, hopelessness in regards to possible betterment.
Internal consistency - positive polarity (IK3) and negative polarity (IK4): The instrument measures the self-perceived internal consistency and consistency centrality. In IK3 all items are worded positively; in IK4, negative.
Room for Action (Handlungsspielraum, HS2): Each of the 9 deprived situations (3 deprivation areas x 3 disadvantaged groups) described in ES2 and ES3 should, without being explicitly discussed, elicit subjective thoughts about what one can do about the situation.
Distributive fairness - group-specific (Verteilungsgerechtigkeit, VG2): Principles of justice (achievement principle, basic needs principle) are stated that address that various advantageous and economic strategies which can be created to ease distribution issues when it comes to privileges between industrialized nations and the Third World, between Turkish guest workers and Germans, and between the employed and the unemployed.
Just-World-View (Gerechter-Welt-Glaube, GW2): Addresses a general just-world belief, or the conviction of a basically just world, as well as a domain-specific just-world belief that reflects the view that the differences which are found between the disadvantaged and the privileged in various situations are not unjustified.
Distribution Justice (Verteilungsgerechtigkeit, VG3): Measures 4 principles of justice: achievement principle, basic needs principle, the principle of equality, and the principle of procedural justice. The item contents are formulated according to the categories distribution (possessions, symbolic value, privileges and rights, social standing), context (economic, promotion-oriented, and relationship-oriented) and mode of action (withdrawal, allocation).
Life Satisfaction (Lebenszufriedenheit, LZ2): Subjects assess their general life satisfaction in regards to their past, present, and future. Additionally, domain-specific satisfaction with their personal privileges in regards to secure future privileges, prosperous living, working conditions, and mental health secured through employment, social status, financial security, and housing situation.
Attitudes toward the disadvantaged groups (EO2): Assess this attitude using an adjective list containing positive and negative characteristics as well as measuring sympathy/antipathy for the 3 disadvantaged groups and for successful German citizens. The prevalence of the each groups characteristics is measured.
Social Desirability (CM2): Crowne & Marlowe (1960), translated by Lück & Timaeus (1969). The answers are mainly given on a 6-point rating scales.
|Data Collection Method||Data collection in the absence of an experimenter
- Mail Survey
|Time Points||repeated measurements|
|Survey Time Period||Longitudinal analysis
U1: June/July 1985, 4 test time-points with 14 days between; U2: November/December 1985, 4 test time-points with 14 days between; Measures: T1: DG2; T2: DG3, AZ2, ES2, IK3; T3: ES3, HS2, VG2, LV2; T4: VG3, LZ2, IK4, EO2, CM2
|Population||Germans, who are privileged in terms of their specific characteristics of prosperity, citizenship, and employment in comparison to the disadvantaged groups (people in the Third World, Turkish guest workers, and the unemployed)|
|Sample||Sample 1.1: Employees with high job security, such government officials (N = 327).
Sample 1.2: Employees with lower job security, such owners of medium-sized or small companies (N = 393).
Sample 2: localized random sample: Residents of relatively privileged neighborhoods (N = 2,803).
Sample 3.1-3.6. Students of the University of Trier (N = 619).
|Subject Recruitment||Sample 1: Every second telephone subscriber in Trier, taken from the official telephone directory 16, 1984/85, registered with an occupation that fit the criteria "high job security.
Sample 2: Recruited through the registration office of the city of Saarbrücken.
Sample 3: Recruited via lectures in the summer semester of 1985.
|Sample Size||434 individuals|
|Return/Drop Out||Of the 4,142 questionnaires distributed, 991 questionnaires were returned (23.9%) at Time 1. Of these subjects, 434 (43.8%) returned questionnaires at Time 2. Drop-out was 56.2%.|
|Gender Distribution||40,8% female subjects (n=177)
59,2% male subjects (n=257)
|Age Distribution||19-84 years|
Demographic characteristics (age, sex, children, education, occupation, likelihood of own unemployment, religion, education, occupation, likelihood of partner's unemployment, income, community size, current political and social engagement) (covariate, variables to criterion group formation)
Political activities and objectives (criterion variable for group formation)
Existential guilt (criterion variables, core variables)
Room for action (covariate)
Internal consistency (covariate)
Distributive justice (covariate)
Just world belief (covariate)
Life satisfaction (covariate)
Attitudes toward the disadvantaged groups (covariate)
Social desirability (control variable)
With the exception of the subjects' numbers, all variables (at both time-points) are available
|Data Status||Complete Data Set|
|Original Records||Questionnaire filled out by either the subject or the experimenter containing closed and/or open answers|
|Transformation||Subjects' responses were transferred into the data matrix using simple coding. The data from the Time 2 of investigation were identified by the number 2 and the letter R in the variable name. This data matrix (malo85ex05_rd) is provided with the corresponding code book (malo85ex05_kb). Much of the derived data, essentially the mean values of many of the items, are provided. The derived data matrix (malo85ex05_ad) and the transformation procedures (malo85ex05_aa) are also provided.|
|Description||Primary data for the study|
|Data Content||434 subjects, 1,257 variables|
|Data Points||434*1,257=545,538 data points|
|Variables||Subject ID (1), period of investigation, (2) Demographic variables (2x18 = 36), Current political and social engagement (2x39 = 78), Political activities and objectives (2x96 = 192), Existential guilt (2x162 = 324), Room for action (2x9 = 18), Internal consistency (2x32 = 64), Distributive justice (2x76 = 152), Just-world belief (2x15 = 30), Life satisfaction (2x13 = 26), Attitudes towards the disadvantaged groups (2x144 = 288), Social desirability (2x23 = 46)|
|Description||Primary data and derived data for the study|
|Data Content||434 subjects, 1,437 variables|
|Data Points||434*1,437=623,658 data points|
|Variables||Subject ID (1), period of investigation, (2) Demographic variables (2x18 = 36), Current political and social engagement (2x39 = 78), Political activities and objectives (2x96 = 192), Existential guilt (2x162 = 324), Room for action (2x9 = 18), Internal consistency (2x32 = 64), Distributive justice (2x76 = 152), Just-world belief (2x15 = 30), Life satisfaction (2x13 = 26), Attitudes towards the disadvantaged groups (2x144 = 288), Social desirability (2x23 = 46), derived variables (180)|
|German codebook of primary data set malo85ex05_pd.txt||malo85ex05_kb.txt|
|Transformation instructions of primary data set malo85ex05_pd.txt||malo85ex05_aa.txt|
|Publications Directly Related to the Dataset|
|Schneider, A., Montada, L., Reichle, B. & Meissner, A. (1986). Auseinandersetzung mit Privilegunterschieden und existentieller Schuld: Item- und Skalenanalysen I (E.S.-Bericht Nr. 3 (= Berichte aus der Arbeitsgruppe "Verantwortung, Gerechtigkeit, Moral" Nr. 37)). Trier: Universität, Fachbereich I, Psychologie.|
|Utilized Test Methods|