Religious Fundamentalism and Terror Management: Differences by Interdependent and Independent Self-construal Academic Article uri icon


  • Two studies tested the hypothesis that religious fundamentalism and self-construal are associated with systematic differences in death awareness. We hypothesized that, for individuals low in religious fundamentalism, who presumably experience less of an anxiety buffer based on worldview, interdependent self-construal (a sense of the self as encompassing connections to close others) should be associated with reduced baseline death awareness - because relational processes may have anxiety buffering functions. Results from both studies supported this notion, showing that chronic and primed interdependence were associated with reduced death-awareness for low fundamentalists. Among persons scoring high on religious fundamentalism levels of death awareness were unrelated to self-construal. These studies suggest that fundamentalism and self-conceptions interact to influence the terror-management process.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Friedman, M., & Rholes, W. S.

citation count

  • 11

complete list of authors

  • Friedman, Mike||Rholes, W Steven

publication date

  • January 2009