13. Ostracism and Solitude

  1. Robert J. Coplan and
  2. Julie C. Bowker
  1. Eric D. Wesselmann1,
  2. Kipling D. Williams2,
  3. Dongning Ren2 and
  4. Andrew H. Hales2

Published Online: 6 DEC 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118427378.ch13

The Handbook of Solitude: Psychological Perspectives on Social Isolation, Social Withdrawal, and Being Alone

The Handbook of Solitude: Psychological Perspectives on Social Isolation, Social Withdrawal, and Being Alone

How to Cite

Wesselmann, E. D., Williams, K. D., Ren, D. and H. Hales, A. (2013) Ostracism and Solitude, in The Handbook of Solitude: Psychological Perspectives on Social Isolation, Social Withdrawal, and Being Alone (eds R. J. Coplan and J. C. Bowker), John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, NJ. doi: 10.1002/9781118427378.ch13

Author Information

  1. 1

    Department of Psychology, Illinois State University, IL, USA

  2. 2

    Department of Psychological Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 6 DEC 2013
  2. Published Print: 23 DEC 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781118427361

Online ISBN: 9781118427378

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Keywords:

  • Ostracism;
  • Social Exclusion;
  • Solitary Confinement;
  • Self-Ostracism

Summary

Ostracism—being ignored and excluded—is a common yet distressing experience. Williams (2009) proposed a temporal model of ostracism to describe and understand the initial and long-term experiences of ostracism and how individuals subsequently respond. Individuals have reflexive reactions to ostracism, characterized by immediate pain, emotional distress, and psychological need threat. Ostracized individuals then enter the reflective stage, characterized by efforts to appraise the meaning and importance of the ostracism episode and on recovery. Individuals who are chronically ostracized enter the resignation stage. This latter stage remains largely unexplored empirically. One goal of this chapter is to generate future directions in research on the resignation stage. We also recognize that some individuals choose to withdraw from social circumstances. We propose that whereas some do this to prevent negative social interactions, others choose solitude for self-reflection and self-discovery, an intra-personal process that promotes strength and resilience.