Document Type : Scientific Research Manuscript


1 Professor of Social Psychology in TEFL, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Khorasan-e Razawi, Iran

2 Assistant Professor of Linguistics, Damghan University, Semnan, Iran

3 English department, Imam Reza International UniversityAssistant Professor of Linguistics, Imam Reza International University of Mashhad Khorasan-e Razawi, Iran


Shame and guilt, as universal and self-conscious emotions, exist in every aspect of our every-day lives. These two feelings effectively enhance the process of human socialization; they normally occur as a response to a negative evaluation of the self, which is typically based on societal standards. The above-mentioned emotions are considered as universal phenomena, however, culture can affect both. The way we value the emotions is under the influence of culture. Given the culture-specific patterns of emotions, the present research made an investigation of “shame” and “guilt”, as concepts based on culture in the Persian context. This study aimed at studying the linguistic elements stating the emotions of shame (sharmsâri, rou siyâhi, khajelat, nang, biâberouei, khejâlat, khajoul, hayâ, âberou, kamrou, etc.) and guilt (taghsir, moghaser, gonâhkâr, etc.) in the Persian language. In order to achieve this purpose, 756 natural contexts in which the utterances related to shame and guilt have been used were recorded. The data collected was then analyzed based on Dell Hymes’ SPEAKING model (1967); the various social aspects which were related to these two emotions were, then, extracted. The research made use of a corpus-based approach, and the findings of the study pointed out the importance and dominance of shame in the Iranian culture compared to guilt. The reason has its roots in the dominance of the collectivist culture among Iranians.


Main Subjects

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