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Hope

A precise definition of hope is somewhat elusive. Philosophers, poets, and scholars throughout history have debated what hope is and what its role is in human development. Nevertheless, there is growing consensus across multiple disciplines that hope is an individual strength that promotes positive human development; it is a psychosocial phenomenon with behavioral, emotional, and cognitive components. Contemporary psychologists (and especially positive psychologists who have studied hope since the 1990s) define hope by referring to its constituent parts. Thus, hope is what is known as a “latent” variable, one that is not directly observable but that may be identified by manifest attributes. Research and scholarship from the fields of psychology, philosophy, human development, and nursing psychiatry converge on three ingredients of hope: positive future expectations, ...

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