The use of death metaphors to understand personal meaning of death among Hong Kong Chinese undergraduates

Wing-Shan Cheung, Samuel M Y Ho
Death Studies 2004, 28 (1): 47-62
Many Chinese words are pictographic in nature and Chinese people often tend to use metaphorical expressions to communicate emotional feelings. The assessment of death images and metaphors provides a meaningful way of understanding personal perceptions of death among the Chinese. The purpose of this study was to establish an instrument to assess the death metaphors of Hong Kong Chinese for assessment and empirical research. Thirty death metaphor statements in Chinese were created from items of the Revised Death Fantasy Scale (RDFS; J. McLennan & C. A. Stewart, 1997) and a previous pilot study in Hong Kong (S. M. Y. Ho, 2001). The item pool was administered to 100 undergraduates together with the Templer's Death Anxiety Scale. Seven out of the 10 highest scored death metaphor statements were from the items that had been created for this study. Descriptive statistics of individual items suggested an interpersonal dimension of death perception that is not emphasized in Western literature. Factor analysis generated a 18-item Death Metaphors Scale (DMS) with 2 9-item subscales: the Positive Metaphors (f = .85) and the Negative Metaphors (f = .81). The scores of DMS subscales are significantly correlated with the Templer's Death Anxiety Scale but not with corresponding scores of the RDFS. The DMS was considered a potentially useful instrument to study death metaphors among Chinese.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Available on the App Store

Available on the Play Store
Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"