Forgiveness and Health

Scientific Evidence and Theories Relating Forgiveness to Better Health

  • Loren Toussaint
  • Everett Worthington
  • David R. Williams

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Loren L. Toussaint, Everett L. Worthington Jr., David R. Williams
    Pages 1-9
  3. Definition, Measurement, and Models

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 11-11
    2. Jeritt R. Tucker, Rachel L. Bitman, Nathaniel G. Wade, Marilyn A. Cornish
      Pages 13-28
    3. Caroline R. Lavelock, Daniel J. Snipes, Brandon J. Griffin, Everett L. Worthington Jr., Don E. Davis, Joshua N. Hook et al.
      Pages 29-42
    4. Charlotte van Oyen Witvliet, Daryl R. Van Tongeren, Lindsey Root Luna
      Pages 43-58
  4. Empirical Evidence of Forgiveness-Health Connections

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 59-59
    2. Kevin T. Larkin, Carol Goulet, Casey Cavanagh
      Pages 61-76
    3. Brandon J. Griffin, Everett L. Worthington Jr., Caroline R. Lavelock, Nathaniel G. Wade, William T. Hoyt
      Pages 77-90
    4. Alyssa C. D. Cheadle, Loren L. Toussaint
      Pages 91-106
    5. Jennifer P. Friedberg, Hillary Lewin Tuvia, Rose Cha
      Pages 107-121
    6. Martin Offenbächer, Jessie Dezutter, Miguel A. Vallejo, Loren L. Toussaint
      Pages 123-137
    7. Jon R. Webb, Bridget R. Jeter
      Pages 139-154
    8. Patrick L. Hill, Marie E. Heffernan, Mathias Allemand
      Pages 155-169
  5. Factors Connecting Forgiveness and Health

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 171-171
    2. Andrea J. Miller, Everett L. Worthington Jr.
      Pages 173-187
    3. Cheryl A. Smith, Michael J. McFarland
      Pages 189-204
    4. Neal Krause, R. David Hayward
      Pages 205-220
    5. Mark M. Leach, Stephanie Parazak
      Pages 221-235
  6. Applications Regarding Forgiveness and Health

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 237-237
    2. Jody L. Davis, Jeffrey D. Green, Chelsea A. Reid, Jaclyn M. Moloney, Jeni Burnette
      Pages 239-253
    3. Frank D. Fincham
      Pages 255-270
  7. Conclusion

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 287-287
    2. Loren L. Toussaint, Everett L. Worthington Jr., David R. Williams
      Pages 289-301
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 303-306

About this book


This volume collects the state-of-the-art research on forgiveness and mental and physical health and well-being. It focuses specifically on connections between forgiveness and its health and well-being benefits. Forgiveness has been examined from a variety of perspectives, including the moral, ethical, and philosophical. Ways in which to become more forgiving, and evolutionary theories of revenge and forgiveness have also been investigated and proposed. However, little attention has been paid to the benefits of forgiveness.

This volume offers an examination of the theory, methods, and research utilized in understanding these connections. It considers trait and state forgiveness, emotional and decisional forgiveness, and interventions to promote forgiveness, all with an eye toward the positive effects of forgiveness for a victim’s health and well-being. Finally, this volume considers key moderators such as gender, race, and age, as well as, explanatory mechanisms that might mediate links between forgiveness and key outcomes.


Age and Forgiveness Culture and Forgiveness Forgiveness Interventions Forgiveness and Abuse Forgiveness and Family Relationships Forgiveness and Happiness Forgiveness and Physical Health Forgiveness and Physiological Concomitants Forgiveness and Well-Being Forgiveness in Stress and Coping Forgiveness in a Social-Culturak Context Intergroup Forgiveness Key Considerations for Health Outcomes Measuring Forgiveness in Health Multidimensional Forgiveness Positive Religious Coping Experiences Role of Forgiveness in Chronic Pain

Editors and affiliations

  • Loren Toussaint
    • 1
  • Everett Worthington
    • 2
  • David R. Williams
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyLuther CollegeDecorahUSA
  2. 2.Dept of PsychologyVirginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUSA
  3. 3.Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthBostonUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Behavioral Science
  • Print ISBN 978-94-017-9992-8
  • Online ISBN 978-94-017-9993-5
  • Buy this book on publisher's site