Narcissism & Self-Conscious Emotion Traits

Published: 10 November 2021| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/43yxwy6nxf.1
Michelle Schoenleber


This study tested hypotheses regarding possible differential relationships of grandiose and vulnerable narcissism with guilt- and shame-related traits, specifically guilt- and shame-proneness and guilt and shame aversion. Based on existing literature, we predicted that grandiose narcissism would be negatively or non-significantly associated with guilt-proneness, shame-proneness, guilt aversion, and shame aversion. By contrast, we hypothesized that vulnerable narcissism would be negatively or non-significantly associated with guilt-proneness and guilt aversion, while being positively associated with shame-proneness and shame aversion. This study also (1) examined the relevance of these guilt and shame variables after accounting for broader, related constructs (i.e. trait negative affect and experiential avoidance), and (2) explored the interactions between proneness and aversion variables, as such interaction have been found to be important in relation to other outcomes in past research. Data were collected from 688 undergraduates over the course of two semesters. All variables were assessed using self-report questionnaires. Notable results include that: > A significant two-way interaction was found between guilt-proneness and guilt aversion for grandiose narcissism, indicating that greater grandiose narcissism was associated with lower propensities for guilt, but only when tolerance for guilt was high (i.e. guilt aversion was low). > After accounting for trait negative affect and experiential avoidance, both narcissism dimensions were negatively associated with guilt-proneness. > Additionally, after accounting for covariates, vulnerable narcissism was positively associated with both shame-proneness and shame aversion.


Steps to reproduce

Grandiose narcissism -- Narcissistic Personality Inventory-16 Vulnerable narcissism -- Hypersensitive Narcissism Scale Guilt- and Shame-Proneness -- Test of Self-Conscious Affect-3 Guilt Aversion -- Guilt Aversion Assessment Shame Aversion -- Shame-Aversive Reactions Questionnaire Trait Negative Affect -- Positive and Negative Affect Schedule ("guilty" and "ashamed" items not included in score for NA) Experiential Avoidance -- Acceptance and Action Questionnaire


University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


Guilt, Shame, Narcissism