Date Approved

2005

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminology

Committee Member

Jay Weinstein, PhD, Chair

Committee Member

Barbara Richardson, PhD

Abstract

Research in the study of the fear of death and dying and the study of altruism implies that there is a dynamic relationship between the two fields. Rarely, if ever, has a direct connection been made. This study is an effort to further explore the relationship that exists between the fear of death and dying, altruistic behavior, self-esteem, and perceptions of a common humanity. Through the synthesis of these four key social psychological concepts, a theoretical model was developed and tested.

Through the examination and statistical analysis of quantitative data and the systematic evaluation of interview data, several connections between our measures were made. The fear of death and dying is causally related to some degree to self-esteem and perceptions of a common humanity. Data failed to show a direct relationship between the fear of death and dying and altruistic behavior.

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Sociology Commons

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