Poster Presentation 6th World Congress on Positive Psychology 2019

Benevolent And Corrective Humor: The Relationship Of Virtue-Related Humor With Character Strengths And Subjective Well-Being (#601)

Sonja Heintz 1
  1. University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland

Recently, two forms of virtue-related humor, benevolent and corrective, have been introduced. Benevolent humor treats human weaknesses and wrongdoings benevolently, while corrective humor aims at correcting and bettering them. The present poster gives an overview of findings relating the BenCor (12 marker items for assessing benevolent and corrective humor) to the 24 character strengths (Study 1; N = 340) and to subjective well-being (Study 2: N = 252). Study 1 found that benevolent humor showed positive correlations with most of the 24 character strengths, while corrective humor related most strongly to strengths of the virtues wisdom, courage, and justice. Thus, both constructs captured important virtue-related humor aspects and are thus suitable for–at least partially–filling the “virtue gap” in humor research. Study 2 showed that benevolent humor was positively related to positive affect, life satisfaction, satisfaction with social relationships, and satisfaction with oneself, while corrective humor was not significantly correlated with subjective well-being. Thus, benevolent humor is not only virtuous, but also related to happiness, which makes it a suitable candidate for humor interventions and trainings. Corrective humor is more mixed as a positive-psychological construct, as it combines a good intention (improving wrongdoings and inequity) with mockery and criticism.