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Khoroshilov, D.A., Gromova, O.A. (2021). Perception of pandemic and vaccination in the period of COVID-19 “second wave” (on the basis of indepth interviews). National Psychological Journal, [Natsional’nyy psikhologicheskiy zhurnal], 2 (42), 3–11. doi: 10.11621/npj.2021.0201

Abstract

Background. The article reveals the prospects for a psychological research of the perception and experience of the Covid-19 epidemic and pandemic as a situation of deprivation and frustration of personal life space. The constitutive characteristics of living space — interactivity, heterogeneity, blurring the boundaries between private and public — makes it vulnerable (precarious) to radical social transformations, of which the epidemic and pandemic of the coronavirus has become the extreme expression.

Objective. The purpose of the theoretical and empirical study is to analyze the subjective attitude towards the pandemic and vaccination.

Design. The study was carried out in a qualitative design using the methods of semi-structured in-depth interviews and thematic analysis, a projective technique of directed verbal associations. The purposive sample of the study consisted of 50 people (25 men and 25 women, 18–70 years old). The interviews were conducted in winter, 2020–2021, during the “second wave” of the coronavirus and in spring, 2021 after the loosening of restrictive measures.

Results. A qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews made it possible to highlight the following topics:

  1. the discrepancy between the cognitive and affective levels of attitudes towards the pandemic situation (acceptance of the coronavirus as an element of everyday life and at the same time experiencing a radical breakdown of the usual way of life);
  2. a steady state of mental tension, which during the period of self-isolation limited the resources for maintaining professional activity, self-education and self-development;
  3. search for individual strategies for coping with this state in everyday life;
  4. the difficulties of resocialization when switching back from the self-isolation mode;
  5. distrust of official and unofficial sources of information, attitude towards the media as a key factor in provoking stress, fear and anxiety;
  6. spontaneous intergroup differentiation of vaccinated and unvaccinated;
  7. projection of the archetypal image of the trickster hero onto the vaccine.

Conclusion. Disorientation in the situation of uncertainty and transitivity provoked by the coronavirus pandemic actualizes the archaic mechanisms of socio-psychological defense, which can be considered confirmation of the theoretical hypothesis of irrationality as an integral property of human consciousness and modern society.

Received: 05/24/2021
Accepted: 06/06/2021
Pages: 3-11
DOI: 10.11621/npj.2021.0201

Sections: Social Psychology;

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Keywords: pandemic; transitivity; life space; everyday consciousness; qualitative research

Available Online 30.06.2021

For citing this article:

Khoroshilov, D.A., Gromova, O.A. (2021). Perception of pandemic and vaccination in the period of COVID-19 “second wave” (on the basis of indepth interviews). National Psychological Journal, [Natsional’nyy psikhologicheskiy zhurnal], 2 (42), 3–11. doi: 10.11621/npj.2021.0201