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Benevolent and Corrective Humor, Life Satisfaction, and Broad Humor Dimensions: Extending the Nomological Network of the BenCor Across 25 Countries

  • Sonja HeintzEmail author
  • Willibald Ruch
  • Simge Aykan
  • Ingrid Brdar
  • Dorota Brzozowska
  • Hugo Carretero-Dios
  • Hsueh-Chih Chen
  • Władysław Chłopicki
  • Incheol Choi
  • Alberto Dionigi
  • Róbert Ďurka
  • Thomas E. Ford
  • Angelika Güsewell
  • Robert B. Isler
  • Alyona Ivanova
  • Liisi Laineste
  • Petra Lajčiaková
  • Chloe Lau
  • Minha Lee
  • Stanca Măda
  • Charles Martin-Krumm
  • Andrés Mendiburo-Seguel
  • Ifu Migiwa
  • Nailya Mustafi
  • Atsushi Oshio
  • Tracey Platt
  • René T. Proyer
  • Angélica Quiroga-Garza
  • TamilSelvan Ramis
  • Răzvan Săftoiu
  • Donald H. Saklofske
  • Olga V. Shcherbakova
  • Alena Slezackova
  • Anastasios Stalikas
  • Ieva Stokenberga
  • Jorge Torres-Marín
  • Peter S. O. Wong
Research Paper

Abstract

Benevolent and corrective humor are two comic styles that have been related to virtue, morality, and character strengths. A previous study also supported the viability of measuring these two styles with the BenCor in 22 countries. The present study extends the previous one by including further countries (a total of 25 countries in 29 samples with N = 7813), by testing the revised BenCor (BenCor-R), and by adding two criterion measures to assess life satisfaction and four broad humor dimensions (social fun/entertaining humor, mockery, humor ineptness, and cognitive/reflective humor). As expected, the BenCor-R showed mostly promising psychometric properties (internal consistency and factorial validity). Consistent with previous studies, benevolent humor correlated positively with life satisfaction in most countries, while corrective humor was uncorrelated with life satisfaction. These relationships were only slightly changed when controlling for social fun/entertaining humor and mockery, respectively. Benevolent humor was mostly positively associated with cognitive/reflective humor, followed by social fun/entertaining humor and mockery. Corrective humor was mostly positively associated with mockery, followed by cognitive/reflective and social fun/entertaining humor, although these relationships differed between the countries. Overall, the present study supports the viability of benevolent and corrective humor, which has yet received insufficient attention in psychology, for cross-cultural investigations and applications of humor, well-being, and morality.

Keywords

Humor Life satisfaction Cross-cultural comparisons BenCor 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We would like to thank Maria Araceli Alvarez-Gasca, Anna Andrzejewska, Ching-Hui Chen, Wojciech Chłopicki, Piotr Chruszczewski, Noreha Hashim, Elvira De Dios-Hernandez, Joanna Dybiec, Dariusz Kałuża, Sarah Kettmann, Maria Mocarz-Kleindienst, Theodoros Kyriazos, Hsiao-Hui Lin, Marhaini Mohd Noor, Andrew R. Olah, Ana Laura Parada-Lopez, Andrejs Andrievs Ramma, Dorota Rygiel, Grzegorz Szpila, Barbara Śpiewak, Patricia Vargas-Benitez, Alicja Witalisz, MA and PhD students at the Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics from Transilvania University of Brașov, and the Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University for their additional support in the translation and data collection. We would also like to thank Olenka Dworakowski for her help in analyzing and presenting the results. Finally, we would like to thank Jessica Milner Davis for her insightful comments on previous versions of the manuscript.

Funding

Funding was provided by University of Rijeka (Grant No. uniri-drustv-18-27), Fondo Nacional de Desarrollo Científico y Tecnológico (Grant No. 11160661), Estonian Ministry of Education and Research (Grant No. IUT 22-5), European Union through the European Regional Development Fund (Grant No. TK 145 Centre of Excellence in Estonian Studies), Center for Social Sciences at Seoul National University (Center for Happiness Studies), The Featured Areas Research Center Program within the framework of the Higher Education Sprout Project by the Ministry of Education (MOE) in Taiwan (Institute for Research Excellence in Learning Sciences and the Chinese Language and Technology Center of National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU)).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

10902_2019_185_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (314 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 313 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sonja Heintz
    • 1
    Email author
  • Willibald Ruch
    • 1
  • Simge Aykan
    • 2
  • Ingrid Brdar
    • 3
  • Dorota Brzozowska
    • 4
  • Hugo Carretero-Dios
    • 5
  • Hsueh-Chih Chen
    • 6
    • 7
    • 8
    • 9
  • Władysław Chłopicki
    • 10
  • Incheol Choi
    • 11
    • 12
  • Alberto Dionigi
    • 13
  • Róbert Ďurka
    • 14
  • Thomas E. Ford
    • 15
  • Angelika Güsewell
    • 16
  • Robert B. Isler
    • 17
  • Alyona Ivanova
    • 18
    • 19
  • Liisi Laineste
    • 20
  • Petra Lajčiaková
    • 14
  • Chloe Lau
    • 21
  • Minha Lee
    • 11
  • Stanca Măda
    • 22
  • Charles Martin-Krumm
    • 23
    • 24
  • Andrés Mendiburo-Seguel
    • 25
  • Ifu Migiwa
    • 26
  • Nailya Mustafi
    • 18
  • Atsushi Oshio
    • 27
  • Tracey Platt
    • 28
  • René T. Proyer
    • 29
  • Angélica Quiroga-Garza
    • 30
  • TamilSelvan Ramis
    • 31
  • Răzvan Săftoiu
    • 22
  • Donald H. Saklofske
    • 21
  • Olga V. Shcherbakova
    • 32
  • Alena Slezackova
    • 33
  • Anastasios Stalikas
    • 34
  • Ieva Stokenberga
    • 35
  • Jorge Torres-Marín
    • 5
  • Peter S. O. Wong
    • 36
  1. 1.Section on Personality and Assessment, Department of PsychologyUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Department of PhysiologyAnkara University School of MedicineAnkaraTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Humanities and Social SciencesUniversity of RijekaRijekaCroatia
  4. 4.Institute of English, Faculty of PhilologyUniversity of OpoleOpolePoland
  5. 5.Mind, Brain, and Behavior Research Center, Department of Research Methods in Behavioral Sciences, Faculty of PsychologyUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain
  6. 6.Department of Educational Psychology and CounselingNational Taiwan Normal UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  7. 7.Institute for Research Excellence in Learning SciencesNational Taiwan Normal UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  8. 8.Chinese Language and Technology CenterNational Taiwan Normal UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  9. 9.MOST AI Biomedical Research Center at NCKUTainanTaiwan
  10. 10.Department of English StudiesJagiellonian UniversityKrakówPoland
  11. 11.Department of PsychologySeoul National UniversitySeoulSouth Korea
  12. 12.Center for Happiness StudiesSeoul National UniversitySeoulSouth Korea
  13. 13.Studio di Psicoterapia CognitivaCattolicaItaly
  14. 14.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts and LettersCatholic University in RužomberokRužomberokSlovakia
  15. 15.Western Carolina UniversityCullowheeUSA
  16. 16.Haute Ecole de Musique Vaud Valais Fribourg, HES-SOUniversity of Applied Sciences and Arts Western SwitzerlandLausanneSwitzerland
  17. 17.School of PsychologyUniversity of WaikatoHamiltonNew Zealand
  18. 18.Pirogov Russian National Research Medical UniversityMoscowRussia
  19. 19.Mental Health Research CenterMoscowRussia
  20. 20.Estonian Literary MuseumTartuEstonia
  21. 21.University of Western OntarioLondonCanada
  22. 22.Transilvania University of BraşovBrașovRomania
  23. 23.Ecole de Psychologues Praticiens de Paris - Catholic Institute of ParisParisFrance
  24. 24.APEMAC, Lorraine UniversityMetzFrance
  25. 25.Facultad de Educación y Ciencias SocialesUniversidad Andres BelloSantiagoChile
  26. 26.Graduate School of Letters, Arts and SciencesWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  27. 27.Faculty of Letters, Arts and SciencesWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  28. 28.School of Psychology, Faculty of Health Sciences and WellbeingUniversity of SunderlandSunderlandUK
  29. 29.Department of PsychologyMartin-Luther-University Halle-WittenbergHalleGermany
  30. 30.School of PsychologyUniversidad de MonterreyMonterreyMexico
  31. 31.Department of PsychologyHELP UniversityKuala LumpurMalaysia
  32. 32.Faculty of PsychologySaint Petersburg State UniversitySaint PetersburgRussia
  33. 33.Department of Psychology, Faculty of ArtsMasaryk UniversityBrnoCzech Republic
  34. 34.Department of PsychologyPanteion UniversityAthensGreece
  35. 35.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Education, Psychology and ArtUniversity of LatviaRigaLatvia
  36. 36.Centre for Fundamental and Liberal EducationUniversiti Malaysia TerengganuKuala NerusMalaysia

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