A longitudinal study of adaption to prison after initial incarceration

Zsuzsanna Kovács, Bernadette Kun, Mark D. Griffiths, Z. Demetrovics

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Abstract

Much of the psychiatric literature about prisoners concerns the associations between psychiatric conditions and criminality. More recently, there has been increased psychiatric interest in the moral emotions (i.e., emotions related to the rightness or wrongness of an individual's actions) and their association with psychological problems and psychopathology. The role of moral emotions has never previously been studied in relation to prison adaptation on initial incarceration. Their impact in adaptation to prison life was studied longitudinally. Immediately after prison incarceration, 316 adult male offenders were assessed in relation to moral emotions, coping strategies, and somatization symptoms. After four months, information relating to their prison adaptation were recorded using official data. Findings showed that (i) offence-related shame correlated positively with somatization symptoms, distraction, and self-blame, and that (ii) offence-related guilt correlated positively with self-blame, and negatively with venting on emotion. The relationship between self-blame and somatization was partly mediated by offence-related shame and guilt. Previous research has demonstrated that moral emotions are associated with increased severity of psychopathology such as depression, suicidal ideation, and psychological problems generally. Therefore, it is important that psychiatrists are aware of the effect that moral emotions can have on psychological functioning. Implications for prison psychiatrists are discussed.

???language???English
???pages???240-246
???numberOfPages???7
???journalAssociation???Psychiatry research
???volume???273
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???publicationStatus???Published - márc. 1 2019

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Prisons
Psychopathology
Longitudinal Studies
Emotions
Psychiatry
Shame
Guilt
Psychology
Suicidal Ideation
Prisoners
Depression
Research

Keywords

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Psychiatry and Mental health
    • Biological Psychiatry

    Cite this

    A longitudinal study of adaption to prison after initial incarceration. / Kovács, Zsuzsanna; Kun, Bernadette; Griffiths, Mark D.; Demetrovics, Z.

    ???in???: Psychiatry research, ???journal.volume??? 273, 01.03.2019, ???pages??? 240-246.

    ???family-name???: Article

    Kovács, Zsuzsanna ; Kun, Bernadette ; Griffiths, Mark D. ; Demetrovics, Z. / A longitudinal study of adaption to prison after initial incarceration. ???in???: Psychiatry research. 2019 ; ???journal.volume??? 273. ???pages??? 240-246.
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