Date of Submission

Fall 2023

Academic Program


Project Advisor 1

Justin Hulbert

Abstract/Artist's Statement

Shame and guilt are often used interchangeably in our daily lives, however, this project aims to differentiate between the two emotions based on people’s self-avoidance behaviours. Existing theories propose that while feelings of shame lead to increased self-avoidance behaviours, feelings of guilt do not. Using a modernised version of the mirror paradigm, this project captured participants’ gaze behaviours around their own face reflections. In this pre-registered study, the gaze behaviour of 30 participants were collected while emotions (either shame or guilt) were induced. Their state shame and guilt as well as trait shame and guilt were also collected through self-reports. It was hypothesised that participants in the shame condition would exhibit less eye-fixation and saccades toward their face reflection and those in the guilt condition would exhibit more. Results in this project showed that also a strong difference on gaze behaviours was detected between shame an guilt experimental conditions, this effect was reduced after adding other regressors, including trait shame and trait guilt. In later regression models, only a marginal negative effect of shame on gaze behaviours was found whereas feelings of guilt has not found to be correlated with gaze behaviours.

Keywords: objective self-awareness, shame, guilt, self-avoidance

Open Access Agreement

Open Access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
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