Three correlational studies and one experiment examined self-verification versus self-enhancement in a posthumous context. In Study 1, in two samples (combined N=3029) modal responses suggest a desire to be remembered as one really is, far into the future. Studies 2 (N=92) and 3 (N=414) showed that posthumous self-verification was independent of life satisfaction, positive self-evaluations, and self-construals but was related to self-esteem, the search for meaning in life, and generativity. In Study 4 (N=461), the salience of negative and positive self-aspects was manipulated. Even when negative qualities were salient, the majority of participants (61%) preferred to be remembered as they really are. The role of self-verification in existential concerns is discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Existential psychology