Lottery winners and accident victims: is happiness relative?

@article{Brickman1978LotteryWA,
  title={Lottery winners and accident victims: is happiness relative?},
  author={Philip Brickman and Dandeson Coates and Ronnie Janoff-Bulman},
  journal={Journal of personality and social psychology},
  year={1978},
  volume={36 8},
  pages={
          917-27
        }
}
Adaptation level theory suggests that both contrast and habituation will operate to prevent the winning of a fortune from elevating happiness as much as might be expected. Contrast with the peak experience of winning should lessen the impact of ordinary pleasures, while habituation should eventually reduce the value of new pleasures made possible by winning. Study 1 compared a sample of 22 major lottery winners with 22 controls and also with a group of 29 paralyzed accident victims who had been… Expand

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