Humor and Expression of Anger in Socially Maladapted Youth
Keywords:humor styles, anger expression, social rehabilitation, maladjustment, youth, mental health
Appropriate regulation of emotions is important for maintaining physical and psychological health and well-being, as well as social adaptation and development. In the prevention of social maladjustment, it is particularly important to support factors that contribute to the proper control of emotions, especially anger. One such factor is humor, which helps to relieve emotional tension and express anger in a safe way. This research aims to identify the types of anger expression occurring in adolescents who are socially maladapted and determine whether there are significant differences in the use of humor between (sub)groups of minors due to their type of anger expression. The study was carried out in twenty-four juvenile correctional institutions in Poland and included a sample of 705 minors (29% females and 71% males, aged between 12 and 21 years old, with an average age of 17). Two research tools were used: the Anger Expression Scale (AES) and the Humor Style Questionnaire (HSQ). K-means cluster analysis led to the separation of three types of anger expression in the group of socially maladjusted youth: Anger-out, Low-Anger, and Anger-control. Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) analysis revealed the statistically significant differences between the groups of minors (clusters) in their use of three styles of humor: affiliative, self-enhancing, and aggressive. These findings can be used in the design of modern interventions in the field of prevention and promotion of mental and social health.