Les passions de l'ame: on obsessive and harmonious passion

J Pers Soc Psychol. 2003 Oct;85(4):756-67. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.85.4.756.


Passion is defined as a strong inclination toward an activity that people like, that they find important, and in which they invest time and energy. Two types of passion are proposed: obsessive and harmonious. Obsessive passion (OP) refers to a controlled internalization of an activity in one's identity that creates an internal pressure to engage in the activity that the person likes. Harmonious passion (HP) refers to an autonomous internalization that leads individuals to choose to engage in the activity that they like. HP promotes healthy adaptation whereas OP thwarts it by causing negative affect and rigid persistence. Results from four studies involving more than 900 participants from different populations supported the proposed conceptualization.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Affect
  • Attitude*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Love*
  • Male
  • Motivation
  • Obsessive Behavior / psychology*
  • Personal Autonomy*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires