Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To find a specific quote…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Trying to find a specific quote? Go to the Search section, and write it using quotation marks in “Search for Words or Phrases in Context.”

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Thrane, G. (1979). Shame and the Construction of the Self. Ann. Psychoanal., 7:321-341.

(1979). Annual of Psychoanalysis, 7:321-341

Shame and the Construction of the Self

Gary Thrane, Ph.D.

What follows is an analysis of shame. In the first part of the paper I consider the reasons for the relative neglect of shame phenomena. Next, I turn to the phenomenology of shame. In the course of the analysis I examine conceptions of shame that have been advanced by philosophers, anthropologists, and psychoanalytic theorists. In the succeeding sections I offer a theory of the function of the sense of shame. My general claim is that the liability to shame is an inescapable part of our humanity, and, in particular, a result of the construction of a coherent and estimable self. Finally, I consider some implications of my views for the practice of psychotherapy. In this last, I concern myself with the violation of the self.


When one considers the pair shame and guilt in the histories of philosophy and psychology, one cannot but be struck by the disparity in attention devoted to the former. Surprisingly little attention has been given to shame. This is especially odd for two reasons. First, shame, unlike guilt, is something that can attach to nonmoral as well as moral objects.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.