Charles M. Shelton

in The Psychology of Gratitude

Published in print February 2004 | ISBN: 9780195150100
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199847389 | DOI:

Series: Series in Affective Science


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This chapter examines the concept and meaning of gratitude from a moral perspective. It argues against the prevailing sentiment that gratitude is inevitably positive and desirable. It stresses the importance of a moral underpinning for gratitude in order to present the distinctive character of the concept. It describes biases which can be recast as positive elements for gratitude’s moral conceptualization.

Keywords: gratitude; moral perspective; moral conceptualization; positive emotion

Chapter.  9934 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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