Anger communication in deaf children

C.J. Rieffe, M. Meerum Terwogt

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In this study, we investigated how deaf children express their anger towards peers and with what intentions. Eleven-year-old deaf children (n = 21) and a hearing control group (n = 36) were offered four vignettes describing anger-evoking conflict situations with peers. Children were asked how they would respond, how the responsible peer would react, and what would happen to their relationship. Deaf children employed the communicative function of anger expression differently from hearing children. Whereas hearing children used anger expression to reflect on the anguish that another child caused them, deaf children used it rather bluntly and explained less. Moreover, deaf children expected less empathic responses from the peer causing them harm. Both groups did, however, expect equally often that the relationship with the peer would stay intact. These findings are discussed in the light of deaf children's impaired emotion socialization secondary to their limited communication skills.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1261-1273
Number of pages13
JournalCognition and Emotion
Publication statusPublished - 2006


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