The aim of this text is to develop specific theses on the interrelation between shame and shaming in the face of the corona pandemic. It refers to global and diverse cultural contexts and, from the perspective of Positive Psychology 2.0, pays particular attention to the efforts made by individuals and collectives to constructively manage and transform this crisis. As pointed out by different scholars during the previous year, the crisis evolved an immense physical, mental, emotional, social and economic challenge and has contemporarily massive legal socio-economic, cultural, political and humanitarial consequences.
The transformation into Industry 4.0 comes with many challenges for organisations all over the world. During the past years, many publications have focused on highlighting the challenges of restructuring, technological defaults, and lack of infrastructure to implement Industry 4.0 transformational challenges. This chapter does not focus on the challenges of Industry 4.0 in terms of hardware or technology, but rather on the emotional aspects of the transformational process. The chapter presents findings from a qualitative study on Industry 4.0 transformational processes and the perspective of managers within a single case study of an engineering organisation. Altogether 16 interviews were conducted on Industry 4.0. This chapter responds to the research question of how managers experience shame in the context of Industry 4.0. It shows that shame, as an often negatively experienced emotion, needs to be taken into account to support a positive and constructive transformation of employees and organisations towards Industry 4.0. Conclusions are drawn on how to deal with negative emotions such as shame, and recommendations are given with regard to future research and practice from an industrial and organisational psychology perspective.
This edited volume provides new perspectives on how shame is experienced and transformed within digital worlds and Industry 4.0. The editors and authors discuss how individuals and organisations can constructively transform shame at work, in professional and private contexts, and with regard to socio-cultural lifestyle changes, founded in digitalisation and Industry 4.0. The contributions in this volume enable researchers and practitioners alike to unlock the topic of shame and its specifics in the highly dynamic and rapidly changing times to explore this emotion in depth in connection with remote workplaces, home office, automated realities and smart systems, or digitalised life- and working styles. By employing transdisciplinary and transcultural perspectives, the volume further discusses shame in the context of new lifestyles, religion, gender, sexual suppression, mental illness, and the nature of citizenship. Researchers, practitioners and students in the fields of industrial and organisational psychology, positive psychology, organisational studies, future studies, health and occupational science and therapy, emotion sciences, management, leadership and human resources will find the contributions highly topical, insightful and applicable to practice. Fresh, timely, thought-provoking with each turn of the page, this impressive volume explores shame in today’s world. Moving beyond the simple “guilt is good; shame is bad” perspective, authors from diverse disciplines examine adaptive and maladaptive aspects of shame in the context of contemporary issues (e.g., social media use, COVID-19) via multiple cultural and social lenses. Aptly named, Shame 4.0 is a treasure trove of rich ideas ripe for empirical study – a blueprint for the next generation of research on this complex and ubiquitous emotion. Bravo! --June Tangney, PhD, University Professor and Professor of Psychology, George Mason University, USA Uncovering Shame - To a much greater extent than other emotions like anger, grief, and fear, until recently most shame in modern societies has been hidden from sight. The text you see in this book is one of the steps that is being taken to make it more visible and therefore controllable. -- Thomas Scheff, Prof. Emeritus Department of Sociology, UCSB, Santa Bararbara, Ca.
This chapter provides insights into the state of the art in shame research in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Industry 4.0, and digitalisation. It provides insights into the new and emerging fields of meaning and shame within the rapid changes of societies and organisations in terms of technology, communication, and economics, but also in societies and communication. The changes in the world of work and life, however, do not leave emotions untouched. In this book, we particularly look at the often negatively experienced emotion of shame and explore its meaning and dimensions within the new era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution from different disciplinary and cultural perspectives. The book chapters written by the various authors will shortly be introduced, and insights into the structure and content of the book are provided.
Public exposure through naming and shaming in cyberspace has become an important side effect of the advancement of the digitalisation and technologisation of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). This chapter provides insights into shaming in the digital arena and presents an overview of shaming forms, effects, strategies and counterstrategies in the context of technological changes and advancement from different cultural perspectives on individual, social and global levels. In this chapter, the authors present contemporary debates on shaming in the 4IR, referring to forms of shaming used to reinforce social norms. On one hand, the authors provide insight into online shaming and its special forms, such as slut-shaming (the exposure and shaming of individuals for their perceived or actual sexual behaviour) and body shaming, for instance, the “pro-Ana” (anorexia nervosa) and “pro-Mia” (bulimia nervosa) movements glorifying shame-based eating disorders which are interlinked with shame and shaming. On the other hand, the authors note that the presentation of self-injurious behaviour is currently a strong trend on the Internet. Scribing, snipping and cutting are glorified as a lifestyle, as is the increase in instructions, announcements and appointments for suicide, especially among children and adolescents. The authors reflect on how shame impacts on these behaviours described on the Internet.
Baruch Spinoza (1632–1677) was a Dutch, Portuguese-born philosopher who focused on biblical criticism, the concepts of enlightenment and innovative concepts of self and the universe. Born into the Portuguese-Jewish community, he developed controversial ideas on Judaism and the nature of the Divine, leading to being excommunicated from the Jewish community at the age of 23. This chapter aims to explore the notions of shame (SH) and faith development (FD) in the life of Spinoza by means of a psychobiographical approach. By analysing Spinoza’s life, the authors contribute to the expansion of the theories of shame and faith development and their potential positive effect when transformed into a source of growth, self-development and understanding. As in Spinoza’s tradition, it is assumed that an emotion experienced consciously and understood fully and in depth can contribute to the conscious awareness, recognition and acknowledgement of what is in the present. This psychobiographical account presents new findings of shame and faith development in Spinoza’s life, thereby drawing on positive psychology constructs on the one hand and constituting a radical break with past ideas—as an essential and potential tool for envisaging a form of new and critical ideas beyond present directions of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) on the other hand. Conclusions are drawn about shame and faith development and its lessons and potential learnings for individuals living through the challenges of the 4IR.
Shame has been often been argued as a culturally bound emotion, which can affect a country’s citizens to varying degrees. Arab societies are often regarded as being heteronormative, masculinist, and patriarchal. These cultures are themselves in turn often synonymous with shame narratives associated with the suppression of women and sexuality. Arab women have therefore been gazed upon as objects or chattel among Arab societies and Arab men, leading to heavy critique being delivered by the Western World against the lack of emancipation and sexual freedom Arab women are seemingly able to have agency over. Having been suppressed and also having been viewed as suppressed subjects of society, we may question how authentically Arab women may lead their lives, and truly fulfil their sexual desires. The Arab World has, however, recently experienced huge political, economic, and social upheaval, most notably recognisable as the ‘Arab Spring’. Decades of political stagnation caused by petulant and immovable dictatorships came to an end across much of the Arab World, fuelled by violent uprisings by the public. Generally, it was younger members of these societies who grew frustrated with the lack of future thinking by their governments. They communicated their dismay and organised themselves for demonstrations via social media, whilst also using it as a platform to reach the Western World’s mass media. After the uprisings, new governments were formed across much of the Arab World, but Arab women found themselves with little extra freedom, but a greater hunger to rebel. This chapter will explore the reclamation of sexuality by Arab women and how their rebellion against centuries of suppression is tackling the culture of shame in which they continue to exist.
Women and girls have long been confronted with unrealistic, unattainable body image norms. Additionally, the ‘ideal feminine’ body has been subject to constant change over the last centuries and decades. With the proliferation of the Internet, women and girls are continuously exposed to advice from heteronormative discourses of womanhood. Demand for cosmetic surgery has dramatically increased and is still expanding. Recently, women’s and girls’ awareness has shifted towards how they should ‘improve’ the aesthetic appeal of their labia, ‘optimise’ their vaginas, and generally make their vulva ‘healthier’, leading to a growing popularity of female genital cosmetic surgery. Proponents of surgical interventions (falsely) claim them as agentic methods of self-expression and promise ‘improvement’ beyond the individual’s control. The marketing of these procedures is predicated on shame and has been described as aggressive. Our postmodern era brings new visions of desired body image, and a rise of Internet-based digital connections between people. This means new body image ‘norms’ are instantly circulated and changed, and body image is continuously scrutinised and shamed. Coupled with increased accessibility of Internet-based nudity and pornographic material, and prevailing associations of shame and taboo about female genitalia, consequences particularly for young women’s perceptions of body image are drastic. This chapter discusses the Internet’s role in the recent desire by young women and girls to seek genital cosmetic surgery..
The negative impact of the coronavirus disease outbreak 2019 (COVID-19) on work mental health is reported in many countries including Germany and South Africa: two culturally distinct countries. This study aims to compare mental health between the two workforces to appraise how cultural characteristics may impact their mental health status. A cross-sectional study was used with self-report measures regarding (i) mental health problems, (ii) mental health shame, (iii) self-compassion, (iv) work engagement and (v) work motivation. 257 German employees and 225 South African employees have completed those scales. This study reports results following the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) guidelines. T-tests, correlation and regression analyses were performed. German employees had lower mental health problems and mental health shame, and higher self-compassion than South Africans. Mental health problems were positively associated with mental health shame and amotivation, and negatively associated with work engagement and intrinsic motivation in both groups. Lastly, self-compassion, a PP 2.0 construct, was the strongest predictor for mental health problems in both countries. Our results suggest i) that German culture's long-term orientation, uncertainty avoidance and restraint may help explain these differences, and ii) that self-compassion was important to mental health in both countries. While the levels of mental health differed between the two countries, cultivating self-compassion may be an effective way to protect mental health of employees in those countries. Findings can help inform managers and HR staff to refine their wellbeing strategies to reduce the negative impact of the pandemic, especially in German-South African organizations.
Shame is an unconscious, somehow unattended and neglected emotion and occurs when individual and socio-cultural norms are violated. It often impacts negatively on the self and others across cultures. During the Covid-19 crises, shame has become an important emotion with a powerful effect, depending on how it is experienced within the socio-cultural context. This article explores shame in international perspectives in the context of Covid-19 and addresses the question how shame is transformed from an existential positive psychology (PP2.0) perspective. The study uses a qualitative research paradigm and explores shame and its transformation during Covid-19. Purposeful and snowball sampling was used. The sample consisted of 24 individuals (16 female, 8 male), of 13 different nationalities. Data were collected from written interviews and analyzed through thematic analysis. Ethical considerations were followed; ethical approval was given by a university. Findings show that participants become very worried, anxious, scared, sad, and shocked when they or individuals in their close relationships contracted Covid-19. Shame plays an important role during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the meaning and experience of shame during Covid-19 is strongly dependent on the socio-cultural background of the individual who is experiencing the disease. Individuals use different strategies and mechanisms to deal with and transform shame in the context of Covid-19.
In the twenty-first-century workforce, shame seems to be an often unconscious and neglected topic which is hardly addressed on micro-, meso- and macro-levels in different cultural contexts. Shame is generally viewed as a negative emotion which impacts negatively on the self within the context of others. Previous research has shown that shame affects individuals in organisations and needs to be addressed and transformed to impact constructively on leaders, employees and the organisation. This chapter presents an overview on relevant aspects of shame in the workplace and places it into the discourse of positive psychology (1.0) and the second wave of positive psychology (2.0).
Scham ist ein Thema, das auch im medizinischen Kontext eine Rolle spielt und mit Gesundheit, Krankheit sowie Schmerzen verbunden ist. In diesem Artikel wird gezeigt, welche konstruktiven Ansätze es gibt, um mit der Scham im medizinischen Kontext umzugehen und sie schließlich als Ressource in der Interaktion zwischen medizinischem Fachpersonal, Ärzten und Patienten zu nutzen. Erschienen in: Schmerzmedizin, 35(4), 54-56.
Im Zuge postmoderner, interkultureller Arbeits- kontexte kommt den Emotionen eine immer wichtigere Bedeutung zu. Scham ist ein Gefühl, das häufig als negativ empfunden wird und somit zum Gesundheitsrisiko werden kann. Es kann jedoch auch als eine Ressource in interkultu- rellen Arbeitskontexten betrachtet werden und positiv im Kontext von Arbeit und Organisation, Gesundheit und Karriere von Mitarbeitenden wirken. Besonders im Kontext von Arbeit 4.o wird der Umgang mit Emotionen – und vor allem mit Scham – in interkulturellen Kontexten neu überdacht werden müssen. Dies gilt auch für den politischen Bereich, in dem Scham aktuell an Bedeutung gewinnt. Zum einen geschieht es hier durch Debatten, so hält bspw. die Umwelt- wissenschaftlerin Jennifer Jacquet Scham und Beschämung für ein probates strategisches Mit- tel zur Durchsetzung berechtigter Interessen gegenüber Regierungen und Konzernen, wenn es keine gesetzlichen Grundlagen gibt oder die- se nicht zur Anwendung gebracht werden, zum anderen etwa in China durch die Einführung des Social Scoring für alle Bürger*innen. Erschienen in Mondial, 25(1), 19-22.
All people daily consume products and services, irrespective of their income. The millions of people globally who still live in absolute poverty also need to purchase basic necessities for survival. Shame, an emotion that is generated both internally and externally, appears to be a characteristic experience in poverty. The term, Bottom of Pyramid describes the millions of consumers living at the bottom of the global economic pyramid. Estimates of their income vary, but their low-income restrict their consumption capability, generating possible emotional suffering and experiences of ill-being. Consumption plays an essential role in people’s participation in society. It provides an indication of their choices and the choices that they cannot make to other people and broader society, including retailers, advertising agencies and the media. Consumer culture is acknowledged as a dominant cultural trend in many societies and this trend may impact on people’s perceptions of themselves.
Whenever you are working with somebody who is ashamed of something or who is proud of something, you could ask how certain or doubtful he or she is about this feeling of shame or pride. Certainty and doubt do not exclusively refer to their self-evaluation but also to the evaluations of their social system, their community or to society in general. The dynamic of change and development may be clarified by visualising the antagonistic relationship between shame and pride in (self-)evaluation of their certainty or doubt. The transformations from shame into pride and vice versa are driven by the doubt about former evaluations and judgements. This short practical introduction will share a meta-model that can be helpful in counselling, mediation, consulting and therapy concerning shame or pride.
This chapter is the first of two chapters on shame in German society. It explores collective shame in the German context, thereby, opening the “black box” of shame which is often left closed and stored in the back of collective and individual minds. The chapter explores shame from different German historic and contemporary collective perspectives and provides the reader with an overview of research and state-of-the-art research and practices on collective shame in the context described. It explores how shame is experienced and developed, (re-)constructed, addressed and transformed at these different societal levels. The chapter presents conclusions and recommendations on how to transform collective shame in different German contexts.
Salutogenesis is the study of what keeps people healthy and how to develop health. It is a theory introduced by the medical sociologist, Aaron Antonovsky, in the late 1970s. Contemporary salutogenesis is an internationally well-researched theory. It was previously placed in a positive psychology framework (PP1.0) as a theory. In this article, the authors discuss how salutogenesis and the second wave of positive psychology (PP2.0) can contribute to developing the mental health and well-being of individuals in the counselling context. They focus on the emotions of shame, guilt and anxiety and their impact on counselling. The article further presents a conceptual approach to deal with shame, guilt and anxiety from a salutogenic and PP2.0 perspective to transform emotions that are experienced negatively into positive experiences. This salutogenic transformation can contribute to the growth, mental health and well-being of individuals. One case example from counselling practice is given. The article closes with conclusions and theoretical and practical recommendations for counselling.
Because shame is often a hidden and isolated experience, a mindful and conscious approach is needed in order to heal shame. This chapter deals with the healing ritual of constellation work to transform shame from a negative, challenging emotion into a health resource. The therapeutic method and ritual of constellation work allows for the identification of shame within its systemic context and its conscious exploration. Insight is offered into this powerful healing ritual and tool which explores and transforms shame, not only at an individual level, but also within a therapeutic group context.
This chapter is the second part of two chapters on shame in German contexts. It explores research which focuses on shame in individuals. The question addressed is the following: Which aspects of shame does research highlight with regard to shame in individuals in German contexts? Individually experienced shame in German cultural and contemporary research is explored and reflected on, to provide readers with an insight into shame research in Germany, which is often published in the German language. Practical applications are added with regard to the selected research areas on individual shame. Conclusions are drawn and recommendations for future research and (therapeutical) practice are given.
Shame is a kind of self-conscious emotions which creates feelings of powerless, inferior, and depressed affections, especially when a person transgresses the social norms. It is necessary to self-regulate shame using specific strategies for adolescents in social life. This study was to examine the effects of shame regulation, and apply it to counseling. Seventy-two students in Grade 7, average age of 13.92, were required to regulate their shame emotion using either re-planning or self-blaming strategy. The results showed that re-planning or self-blame strategy could enhance adolescents' shame intensity, and the effect sizes of regulation were up to medium level,, which evidenced that individuals could self-regulate their shame intensity by using counseling strategies. [https://www.springer.com/in/book/9783030134082#aboutBook][doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-13409-9_5]
After a major mistake, it is natural to feel ashamed. Nevertheless, shame is also a powerfully destructive feeling. Left to fester, it can have a profound effect on psychological well-being (Mayer, Viviers, & Tonelli, 2017). It is concealed behind guilt, it lurks behind anger, and it can be disguised as despair and depression. The question as to how employees can cope with shame in organisations can be asked. here are two maladaptive strategies: attacking the self or attacking other employees. Initially, hostility is directed inward (“I’m worthless,” “I’ve never been any good”). In an attempt to feel better, some employees will lash out in defensiveness and denial. Others may try to compensate by being exceptionally nice or by pleasing other employees in the hopes of improving their feelings of self-worth (Velotti, Garofalo, Bottazzi, & Caretti, 2017). An improved approach is to discover the true source of shame, and then practice self-compassion (Irons & Lads, 2017).
This book provides new ideas on how to work with and constructively transform shame on a theoretical and practical level, and in various socio-cultural contexts and professions. It provides practical guidelines on dealing with shame on the basis of reflection, counselling models, exercises, simulations, specific psychotherapeutic approaches, and auto-didactical learning material, so as to transform shame from a negatively experienced emotion into a mental health resource. The book challenges theorists to adopt an interdisciplinary stance and to think “outside the box.” Further, it provides practitioners, such as coaches, counsellors, therapists, trainers and medical personnel, with practical tools for transforming negative experiences and emotions. In brief, the book shows practitioners how to unlock the growth potential of individuals, teams, and organisations, allowing them to develop constructively and positively.
From the salutogenic, as well as from the shamanic point of view, shame in its largest intensity can be considered an emotional death experience, potentially leading to depression, addiction and suicide. 'Felt' death experience, encompassing the whole person, as a large stressor, implies the potential for dying or 'rising from the ashes' as a more empowered being. This has been described in the typical path of a shaman, as well as within the model of Salutogenesis, where the successful and often miraculous overcoming of a death (-like) experience leads to an increased Sense of coherence and to empowerment. Shame occurs in everyone's upbringing and life to different degrees. In this context, mainly intergenerational, unjustified and toxic shame is considered, especially regarding female and racial shaming. In order to use the transformative power of shame, different cognitive steps are suggested. However, strong emotions and traumata, like shame, are stored in our body tissues. Therefore, physical processes, like embodiment techniques, are essential for their transformation. The recreation of oneself after shame requires the seeing and feeling, which creates believing. Exemplary movement with rhythmic music and body awareness practices with their underlying mechanisms are described, which may be able to rebalance, reassemble and recreate one's sense of self. The rebalancing and restoring of body, mind, spiritual and group-connection, which had been disrupted through shaming, based on new grounds and embodiment practices, is essential for transformation towards a more authentic self.
Shame may be generally defined as painful feelings and negative emotions, related to stressful experiences and psychological states such as anxiety, depression and aggression, which may impede ongoing positive experiences and feelings such as contentment, peacefulness and happiness. Shame experiences may also constitute source of resilience and health. The HeartMath system refers to scientific, evidence based self-regulation techniques that were specifically designed to be used in the moment to relieve stress, improve resilience and promote positive feelings, sense of coherence, health and performance. HeartMath techniques are informed by a large body of scientific research indicating that neural signals from the heart affect the brain centres involved in emotional self-regulation. Skill acquisition of HeartMath techniques is facilitated through heart rate variability (HRV) and heart rhythm coherence feedback training, heart focussed breathing and intentional generation of associated positive emotional feelings, emotional imagery, and remembered wellness. Perusal of the extensive HeartMath Research library indicates that the issue of shame has not been exclusively addressed. Various rigorous studies have indicated significant effectiveness of HeartMath practice in decreasing guilt as well other negative emotions as well as promoting positive feelings and resilience. The aim of the chapter is to explore the research hypothesis as to the effectiveness of HeartMath techniques to transform shame feelings. Specific techniques to address negative emotions, manage stress, promote positive feelings and build resilience will be discussed.
Now more than ever, our bodies are being used as radical tools with which we ne-gotiate our place and status in society. No longer is it the case that the body is purely a functional, reproductive, machine – passing on genetic information from one generation to the next; but rather they have become a form of language in their own right. Our bodies are increasingly recognised as individual emblems, each with powerful and political meaning. In Western Society in particular, the quest for the “eternal feminine” endures, rendering women passive, sexualised, and objectified; without the opportunity to subvert the shame they are forced to withstand. If women were afforded the opportunity and social standing to over-come the pressures of living in patriarchal and phallogocentric societies; they could instead become members of our civilization who are the subjects, allowed to act and experience, rather than be gazed upon, and experienced as the objects of hegemonic, heteronormative, and masculinist desire. It is in this regard that we, as a society, must change the entrenched conscious practices of sexualisation, and should expose the unconscious biases towards women’s bodies such that women can embrace their bodies, their bodily agency, and the multiple functions of their body (such as athleticism, breastfeeding, childbirth, menstruation, & or-gasm) rather than feeling abject shame, which for so long has been the case. It is the aim of this chapter to advocate the reconstruction of gender in society, allow-ing for an understanding of fluid gender identity and context-specific gender con-struction to permit the desexualisation of the body and the removal of body-specific shame. It shall further argue for society to instead favour the acceptance of the body as a multi-functional entity, which can be sexual without having to be sexualised.
This study explored experiences of shame in the context of racial and cultural belonging. Participants were a multiracial purposive sample of 11 South Africans (five females and six males, four white, two coloured, two Indian and three black Africans; in the age range between 40 to 61 years). The participants completed a semi-structured interview on their perceptions of shame in the context of family and community. The interview data were analysed utilising interpretive phenomenological analysis (IPA). Participants from all racial groups considered shame experiences primarily in relation to violation of family and community norms and values. Findings show that male white Afrikaans-speaking participants narrated shameful experiences mainly with regard to the violation of religious (Calvinist) norms and values. Furthermore, the violation of racially constructed boundaries was also likely with females with an Indian and white Afrikaans culture background. Overall, the findings suggest white Afrikaans culture to be less shaming of individuals in comparison to black, coloured, or Indian cultures. Shame beliefs appear to be culturally nuanced in their salience to members or racial-ethno groupings.
While shame can be both destructive and constructive, healthy shame, with its roots in personal conviction, is inherently associated with values and self-evaluation. Understood thus, it is an integral part of wholesome human functioning in the personal, social and cultural realms. This chapter investigates these statements in four stages drawing on relevant scholarship both past and present. First, it examines briefly the relational foundations of shame. Second, in the moral area, it taps into the tradition of virtue ethics as represented by Thomas Aquinas and approached through the virtue of charity. Third, it investigates shame’s educative aspect in two forms: personally, in terms of shame’s correlative quality, namely, honour; collectively, through three examples of cultural learning in relation to shame and injustice in the Australian context. Fourth, from spirituality, it uses insights from James and Evelyn Whitehead’s (and others’) discussion of shame in relation to spiritual growth. In doing so, it suggests briefly individuals who have transcended social shame and directed it to be a subversive and transforming influence.
This chapter provides an introduction to the book and the content of the subchapters. It defines shame and embeds the discourse on shame in positive psychology and in selected cultural contexts.
The Value of Shame Exploring a Health Resource in Cultural Contexts Editors: Vanderheiden, Elisabeth, Mayer, Claude-Helene (Eds.) • Provides new comprehensible perspectives on contemporary research on shame • Discusses shame concepts from a positive psychology perspective across cultures • Highlights new insights on the concept of shame for researchers and practitioners in the field of psychology and cultural studies This volume combines empirical research-based and theoretical perspectives on shame in cultural contexts and from socio-culturally different perspectives, providing new insights and a more comprehensive cultural base for contemporary research and practice in the context of shame. It examines shame from a positive psychology perspective, from the angle of defining the concept as a psychological and cultural construct, and with regard to practical perspectives on shame across cultures. The volume provides sound foundations for researchers and practitioners to develop new models, therapies and counseling practices to redefine and re-frame shame in a way that leads to strength, resilience and empowerment of the individual.
Carl Gustav Jung changed the way of thinking about the person, the conscious and the unconscious. According to Jung, every person carries a shadow and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the denser it is. Shame is viewed as an intense, “soul eating” emotion which can impact negatively on the individual. Caroline Myss has developed a therapeutical concept to work with Jung’s archetypes in individual therapy from a positive psychology perspective. The question addressed in this chapter is how shame can be transformed from shadow into light, from the unconscious into consciousness. The aim of this chapter is to present a selected single case study on a therapeutical process working with shame, shadow and archetypal psychology in an individual and group process. Findings show that shame can be transformed through therapeutical work from a “soul eating” into a “soul feeding” emotion.
Shame is a concept widely researched in psychology and it has been contextualised across racial groups, cultures, nationalities and gender. In the sub-Saharan African context, shame has been studied particularly with regard to HIV/AIDS and cultural traditions. However, it seems that most of the studies conducted do not focus on, firstly, the work context or, secondly, shame as a possible health resource, but rather as a construct that is related to negatively perceived concepts, such as guilt, embarrassment or stigma. In the sub-Saharan African context, there is a dearth of studies providing an overview of the research studies conducted on shame in sub-Saharan African contexts. The chapter provides an overview on research of shame in sub-Saharan African contexts. It further on explores shame experiences in South African workplaces and presents personal and organisational strategies to transform shame constructively. The research methodology used was based on an interpretative hermeneutical paradigm and applied qualitative research methods, such as semi-structured interviews with individuals from various higher education institutions (HEI) and observations at one HEI in particular. The chapter presents new insights and findings on which experiences in the workplaces lead to shame and how employees manage these experiences to overcome negative impacts of shame on individual and organisational levels. Recommendations for future theory and practice are provided.
Orientation: Shame has been internationally researched in various cultural and societal contexts as well as across cultures in the workplace, schools and institutions of higher education. It is an emotional signal that refers to experienced incongruence of identity goals and the judgement of others. Research purpose: The purpose of this study was to focus on experiences of shame in the South African (SA) workplace, to provide emic, in-depth insights into the experiences of shame of employees. Motivation for the study: Shame in the workplace often occurs and might impact negatively on mental health and well-being, capability, freedom and human rights. This article aims at gaining some in-depth understanding of shame experiences in SA workplaces. Building on this understanding the aim is to develop awareness in Industrial and Organisational Psychologists (IOPs), employees and organisations to cope with shame constructively in addition to add to the apparent void in the body of knowledge on shame in SA workplaces. Research design, approach and method: An interpretative hermeneutical research paradigm, based on Dilthey’s modern hermeneutics was applied. Data were collected through semi- structured interviews of 11 employees narrating their experiences from various workplaces, including the military, consulting organisations and higher education institutions. Content analysis was used for data analysis and interpretation. Main findings: The major themes around which shameful experiences evolved included loss of face, mistreatment by others, low work quality, exclusion, lifestyle and internalised shame on failure in the workplace. Shame is experienced as a disturbing emotion that impacts negatively on the self within the work context. It is also experienced as reducing mental health and well-being at work. Practical/managerial implications: SA organisations need to be more aware of shame in the workplace, to address the potential negative effects of shame on employees, particularly if they are not prepared to reframe shame into a constructively and positively used emotion. Safe spaces should be made available to talk about shame. Strategies should be applied to deal with shame constructively. Contribution/value-add: This article expands an in-depth understanding of shame from emic and culture-specific perspectives within SA workplaces. The findings are beneficial to IOPs and organisations to understand what shame is from the perspective of SA employees across cultural groups. The article thereby adds value to theory and practice, offering IOPs a deeper understanding of shame in the work context.
This poster focuses on the experiences of SHAME in higher education work contexts in South Africa.