Modulation of forgiveness on processing hurt situations: A study of event-related potentials

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Yangen Zhou
Jiamei Lu
Xiaochen Tang
Chaoyi Hu
Haibin Wang
Cite this article:  Zhou, Y., Lu, J., Tang, X., Hu, C., & Wang, H. (2018). Modulation of forgiveness on processing hurt situations: A study of event-related potentials. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 46(4), 607-616.


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To explore the neuro-mechanism of the time course of processing a hurt situation, we analyzed event-related potentials (ERPs) generated in the brain in response to stimuli in individuals with different degrees of forgiveness. Participants were 216 university students. Of the early ERP components, the negative-deflecting N1 was modulated neither by degree of forgiveness nor by the hurt situation, and the positive-deflecting P2 was larger for low-forgiveness than for high-forgiveness participants, and for low-hurt than for high-hurt situations. The N2, which identifies and encodes stimulus, was enhanced in the high-forgiveness group and for high-hurt situations. Importantly, the late positive component (LPC) stage of stimulus evaluation was larger in the high-forgiveness group for high-hurt situations, but in the low- forgiveness group was evident for low-hurt situations. These data indicate that the modulation of forgiveness on processing hurt situations occurs at the late stage of information processing.

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