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Personality Theory

In: Business and Management

Submitted By faysal7
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Personality Theory

Course : Organizational Behaviour
Course Code: MBA507
Section: 1

Submitted To:
Dr. Nasreen Wadud
Adjunct Faculty, Business Administration Department East West University

Submitted By:
Md. Faysal Ahmed
ID: 2013-1-95-110

Mahmudul Hasan
ID: 2013-1-95-031

Niaj Mahmud
ID: 2013-1-95-055

Md. Samiul Islam Chowdhury
ID: 2013-1-95-076

Submission Date: 24.08.2013

Front Matter 2-5
Preface 2
Learning Objectives 3
Scope of the Project 3
Methodology 4
Limitations 5

I. Introduction 6-12 Introduction to Personality Theory 6
What is a Theory 7
Why Different theories 11 II. Theories of Personality 12-116

Psychoanalytic Theory 12-25
Humanistic Theory 25-43
Trait and Factor Theories- Big Five Factors 43-57 Biological and Genetic Theories 58-62 Social Cognitive Theory 62-87 Holistic-Dynamic Theory 88-116

III. Conclusion 116-117

Final Thoughts 116 Summary 117

Back Matter 118

References 118
What makes people behave as they do? Are people ordinarily aware of what they are doing, or are their behaviors the result of hidden, unconscious motives? Are some people naturally good and others basically evil? Is human conduct largely a product of nature, or is it shaped mostly by environmental influences? Can people freely choose to mold their personality, or are their lives determined by forces beyond their control? Are people best described by their similarities, or is uniqueness the dominant characteristic of humans? What causes some people to develop disordered personalities whereas others seem to grow toward psychological health?
These questions have been asked and debated by philosophers, scholars, and religious thinkers for several thousand years; but most of these discussions were based on personal opinions. Then, near the end of the 19th century, the emergence of psychology as the scientific study of human behavior marked the beginning of a more systematic approach to the study of human personality.
Early personality theorists, such as Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, and Carl Jung, relied mostly on clinical observations to construct models of human behavior. Although their data were more systematic and reliable than those of earlier observers, these theorists continued to rely on their own individualized way of looking at things, and thus they arrived at different conceptions of the nature of humanity.
Later personality theorists tended to use more empirical studies to learn about human behavior. These theorists developed tentative models, tested hypotheses, and then reformulated their models. In other words, they applied the tools of scientific inquiry and scientific theory to the area of human personality. Science, of course, is not divorced from speculation, imagination, and creativity, all of which are needed to formulate theories. Each of the personality theorists discussed in this research has evolved a theory based both on empirical observations and on imaginative speculation. Moreover, each theory is a reflection of the personality of its creator.
The usefulness of each theory, however, is not evaluated on the personality of its author but on its ability to (1) generate research, (2) offer itself to falsification, (3) integrate existing empirical knowledge, and (4) suggest practical answers to everyday problems. Therefore, we evaluate each of the theories discussed in this book on the basis of these four criteria as well as on (5) its internal consistency and (6) its simplicity. In addition, some personality theories have fertilized other fields, such as sociology, education, psychotherapy, advertising, management, mythology, counseling, art, literature, and religion.

By the end of this you should appreciate that: * Personality theorists are concerned with identifying generalizations that can be made about consistent individual differences between people’s behavior and the causes and consequences of these differences; * Sigmund Freud developed a psychoanalytic approach that emphasized the role of the unconscious in regulating behavior; * Raymond Cattell and Hans Eysenck proposed traits as descriptors that we use to describe personality and that have their origins in everyday language; * Biological theories of personality attempt to explain differences in behavior in terms of differences in physiology, particularly brain function; * Research in behavioral genetics has permitted the examination of both genetic and environmental factors in personality; * Social–cognitive theories of personality examine consistent differences in the ways people process social information, allowing us to make predictions about an individual’s behavior in particular contexts.

The project on theories of personality has been prepared for Prof. Dr. Nasreen Wadud (Course instructor of Organizational Behavior, MBA- 507) as a partial requirement of the course Organizational Behavior. So the project mainly provides information about different theories of personality. It provides-

* An overview of the world of personality. * Different theoretical explanations of why we show consistency in our behaviour, thoughts and actions and why these consistencies make us different from each other. * The complex way in which genes and environment determine personality has presented an important puzzle for personality theory. * An explanation for differences in personality in terms of the ways we process information and perceive our social world. * Debates – about interactions between genes and environment, biology and experience, the person and the situation.

The report is mainly based on the primary sources of information. Most of the information was gathered by interviewing different personnel of various organizations. The basis of the report are- * Verbal interview of Manager, technical hands, and other employees * The planning format given by the course instructor was followed by the researchers and tried to collect all required information. * Researchers collected information from many books on the subject and internet. * Researchers have tried to match the information obtained by interview with the information gathered from the Internet. * After getting all the information, an intensive analysis has been conducted and the report has been submitted in presentable form.

Some part of this report is written from the observation, opinion of interviewers. Above all the report is based on the perception, imagination, and creativity and planning of the researchers. Some assumptions are taken from the situational aspects.

LIMITATIONS Every time there is some problem while preparing a project. In this project the researchers also faced some problems while gathering information. Most of the problems are like as follows: * Information’s collected was very confusing and conflicting with others. * The subject is a huge and difficult matter to collect information on. * There is no existing company which practices personality theories from whom a practical view can be taken. * The primary data received from the officials could not be verified and might be biased. * The company’s personnel, from whom we have taken information, were very much busy. Although they tried a lot, they were not able to give enough time in the Rush hours. It was another reason that acted as an obstacle while gathering data.

For these reasons there are some limitations of the report. In spite of all this limitations the researchers has tried with our best to prepare the report in a presentable and faithful manner.

You do not need to be a psychologist to speculate about personality. In our everyday conversations we refer to the personality traits of people we know. Novels, playwrights and filmmakers make constant use of the personality of key figures in their stories, and this is one of the great attractions of popular fiction. The term ‘personality’ is now part of everyday language and theories of personality are generated by all of us every time we answer the question, ‘What is she or he like?’
For centuries, philosophers, theologians, and other thinkers have asked these questions as they pondered the nature of human nature—or even wondered whether humans have a basic nature. Until relatively recent times, great thinkers made little progress in finding satisfactory answers to these questions. A little more than 100 years ago, however, Sigmund Freud began to combine philosophical speculations with a primitive scientific method. As a neurologist trained in science, Freud began to listen to his patients to find out what hidden conflicts lay behind their assortment of symptoms. “Listening became, for Freud, more than an art; it became a method, a privileged road to knowledge that his patients mapped out for him” (Gay, 1988, p. 70).
Freud’s method gradually became more scientific as he formulated hypotheses and checked their plausibility against his clinical experiences. From this combination of speculation and clinical evidence, Freud evolved the first modern theory of personality. Later, a number of other men and women developed theories of personality— some were based largely on philosophical speculation; others, mainly on empirical evidence, but all used some combination of the two. Indeed, a useful theory should be founded on both scientific evidence and controlled, imaginative speculation.

2.1 What Is Personality?
In 400 BC, Hippocrates, a physician and a very acute observer, claimed that different personality types are caused by the balance of bodily fluids. The terms he developed are still sometimes used today in describing personality. Phlegmatic (or calm) people were thought to have a higher concentration of phlegm; sanguine (or optimistic) people had more blood; melancholic (or depressed) people had high levels of black bile; and irritable people had high levels of yellow bile.
Hippocrates’ views about the biological basis of personality are echoed in contemporary theories that link the presence of brain chemicals such as nor adrenaline and serotonin to mood and behavior.
But how do we define ‘personality’? Within psychology two classic definitions are often used:
Personality is a dynamic organization, inside the person, of psychophysical systems that create the person’s characteristic patterns of behavior, thoughts and feelings.
G.W. Allport, 1961

More or less stable, internal factors . . . make one person’s behavior consistent from one time to another, and different from the behavior other people would manifest in comparable situations.
Child, 1968
Both these definitions emphasize that personality is an internal process that guides behaviour. Gordon Allport (1961) makes the point that personality is psychophysical, which means both physical and psychological. Recent research has shown that biological and genetic phenomena do have an impact on personality. Child (1968) makes the point that personality is stable – or at least relatively stable. We do not change dramatically from week to week, we can predict how our friends will behave, and we expect them to behave in a recognizably similar way from one day to the next. Child (1968) includes consistency (within an individual) and difference (between individuals) in his definition, and Allport (1961) refers to characteristic patterns of behavior within an individual. These are also important considerations. So personality is what makes our actions, thoughts and feelings consistent (or relatively consistent), and it is also what makes us different from one another.

1.2 What Is a Theory?
The word “theory” has the dubious distinction of being one of the most misused and misunderstood words in the English language. Some people contrast theory to truth or fact, but such an antithesis demonstrates a fundamental lack of understanding of all three terms. In science, theories are tools used to generate research and organize observations, but neither “truth” nor “fact” has a place in a scientific terminology.

1.2.1 Theory and Its Relatives
People sometimes confuse theory with philosophy, or speculation, or hypothesis, or taxonomy. Although theory is related to each of these concepts, it is not the same as any of them. Philosophy
First, theory is related to philosophy, but it is a much narrower term. Philosophy means love of wisdom, and philosophers are people who pursue wisdom through thinking and reasoning. Philosophers are not scientists; they do not ordinarily conduct controlled studies in their pursuit of wisdom. Philosophy encompasses several branches, one of which is epistemology, or the nature of knowledge. Theory relates most closely to this branch of philosophy, because it is a tool used by scientists in their pursuit of knowledge.
Theories do not deal with “oughts” and “shoulds.” Therefore, a set of principles about how one should live one’s life cannot be a theory. Such principles involve values and are the proper concern of philosophy. Although theories are not free of values, they are built on scientific evidence that has been obtained in a relatively unbiased fashion. Thus, there are no theories on why society should help homeless people or on what constitutes great art.
Philosophy deals with what ought to be or what should be; theory does not. Theory deals with broad sets of if-then statements, but the goodness or badness of the outcomes of these statements is beyond the realm of theory. For example, a theory might tell us that if children are brought up in isolation, completely separated from human contact, then they will not develop human language, exhibit parenting behavior, and so on. But this statement says nothing about the morality of such a method of child rearing. Speculation
Second, theories rely on speculation, but they are much more than mere armchair speculation. They do not flow forth from the mind of a great thinker isolated from empirical observations. They are closely tied to empirically gathered data and to science.
What is the relationship between theory and science? Science is the branch of study concerned with observation and classification of data and with the verification of general laws through the testing of hypotheses. Theories are useful tools employed by scientists to give meaning and organization to observations. In addition, theories provide fertile ground for producing testable hypotheses. Without some kind of theory to hold observations together and to point to directions of possible research, science would be greatly handicapped.
Theories are not useless fantasies fabricated by impractical scholars fearful of soiling their hands in the machinery of scientific investigation. In fact, theories themselves are quite practical and are essential to the advancement of any science. Speculation and empirical observation are the two essential cornerstones of theory building, but speculation must not run rampantly in advance of controlled observation. Hypothesis
Although theory is a narrower concept than philosophy, it is a broader term than hypothesis. A good theory is capable of generating many hypotheses. A hypothesis is an educated guess or prediction specific enough for its validity to be tested through the use of the scientific method. A theory is too general to lend itself to direct verification, but a single comprehensive theory is capable of generating thousands of hypotheses. Hypotheses, then, are more specific than the theories that give them birth. The offspring, however, should not be confused with the parent.
Of course, a close relationship exists between a theory and a hypothesis. Using deductive reasoning (going from the general to the specific), a scientific investigator can derive testable hypotheses from a useful theory and then test these hypotheses. The results of these tests—whether they support or contradict the hypotheses—feed back into the theory. Using inductive reasoning (going from the specific to the general), the investigator then alters the theory to reflect these results. As the theory grows and changes, other hypotheses can be drawn from it, and when tested they in turn reshape the theory. Taxonomy
Taxonomy is a classification of things according to their natural relationships. Taxonomies are essential to the development of a science because without classification of data science could not grow. Mere classification, however, does not constitute a theory. However, taxonomies can evolve into theories when they begin to generate testable hypotheses and to explain research findings. For example, Robert McCrae and Paul Costa began their research by classifying people into five stable personality traits. Eventually, this research on the Big Five taxonomy led to more than a mere classification; it became a theory, capable of suggesting hypotheses and offering explanations for research results. Generates Research
The most important criterion of a useful theory is its ability to stimulate and guide further research. Without an adequate theory to point the way, many of science’s present empirical findings would have remained undiscovered. In astronomy, for example, the planet Neptune was discovered because the theory of motion generated the hypothesis that the irregularity in the path of Uranus must be caused by the presence of another planet. Useful theory provided astronomers with a road map that guided their search for and discovery of the new planet.
A useful theory will generate two different kinds of research: descriptive research and hypothesis testing. Descriptive research, which can expand an existing theory, is concerned with the measurement, labeling, and categorization of the units employed in theory building. Descriptive research has a symbiotic relationship with theory. On one hand, it provides the building blocks for the theory, and on the other, it receives its impetus from the dynamic, expanding theory. The more useful the theory, the more research generated by it; the greater the amount of descriptive research, the more complete the theory.
The second kind of research generated by a useful theory, hypothesis testing, leads to an indirect verification of the usefulness of the theory. As we have noted, a useful theory will generate many hypotheses that, when tested, add to a database that may reshape and enlarge the theory. (Refer to Figure 1.1.)
Theory gives meaning to data

FIGURE 1.1 The Interaction among Theory, Hypotheses, Research, and Research Data.

1.3 Why Different Theories?
If theories of personality are truly scientific, why do we have so many different ones? Alternate theories exist because the very nature of a theory allows the theorist to make speculations from a particular point of view. Theorists must be as objective as possible when gathering data, but their decisions as to what data are collected and how these data are interpreted are personal ones. Theories are not immutable laws; they are built, not on proven facts, but on assumptions that are subject to individual interpretation.
All theories are a reflection of their authors’ personal backgrounds, childhood experiences, philosophy of life, interpersonal relationships, and unique manner of looking at the world. Because observations are colored by the individual observer’s frame of reference, it follows that there may be many diverse theories. Nevertheless, divergent theories can be useful. The usefulness of a theory does not depend on its commonsense value or on its agreement with other theories; rather, it depends on its ability to generate research and to explain research data and other observations.

1.4 What Makes a Theory Useful?
A useful theory has a mutual and dynamic interaction with research data. First, a theory generates a number of hypotheses that can be investigated through research, thus yielding research data. These data flow back into the theory and restructure it. From this newly contoured theory, scientists can extract other hypotheses, leading to more research and additional data, which in turn reshape and enlarge the theory even more. This cyclic relationship continues for as long as the theory proves useful.
Second, a useful theory organizes research data into a meaningful structure and provides an explanation for the results of scientific research. This relationship between theory and research data is shown in Figure 1.1. When a theory is no longer able to generate additional research or to explain related research data, it loses its usefulness and is set aside in favor of a more useful one.
In addition to sparking research and explaining research data, a useful theory must lend itself to confirmation or disconfirmation, provide the practitioner with a guide to action, be consistent with itself, and be as simple as possible. Therefore, we have evaluated each of the theories presented in this book on the basis of six criteria: A useful theory (1) generates research, (2) is falsifiable, (3) organizes data, (4) guides action, (5) is internally consistent, and (6) is parsimonious.


Psychoanalysis must be understood as both a major theoretical system and a form of therapy. Here we'll discuss it only as a theory, conducting our discussion of psychoanalysis as therapy in the Personality: Therapies Chapter. One sage argued that humanity has suffered three great blows to its ego in the past millennium. Copernicus' now-demonstrable assertion that the earth is not the center of the universe cost humankind its centrality in the universe in the 1500's. Darwin's Theory of Evolution argued in the mid-1800's that humans are not ultimately likely to be the the supreme form of animal life.

We are simply the most sophisticated, most recently evolved form. That cost us ultimate dominance in the animal hierarchy. And then, in the latter 1800's, here comes Freud arguing that we are not even aware of all the forces controlling our behavior – we are subject to unconscious urges! The entire psychoanalytic theory is based on only two forms of observations made by Sigmund Freud.

He studied deviant, or irrational, behavior of a very small number (less than a dozen) of his own medical patients. He also drew observations from everyday life, such as expression of humor and slips of the tongue. Out of these two kinds of observations he developed the single most influential theory of personality yet created. Within this intellectual framework he laid out his observations of the primary underlying assumptions on which psychoanalysis is based. He also detailed his ideas about the structure of personality and sexual and aggressive drives to which we are subject. Two of his students -- Jung and Adler -- went on to develop substantial psychodynamic theories of their own.

2.2 Freud’s Models of the Mind
Freud developed a number of hypothetical models to show how the mind (or what he called the psyche) works: * a topographic model of the psyche – or how the mind is organized; * a structural model of the psyche – or how personality works; and * a psychogenetic model of development – or how personality develops.

2.2.1 Topographic model of the psyche
Freud (1905/53b) argued that the mind is divided into the conscious, the preconscious and the unconscious. According to Freud, the conscious is the part of the mind that holds everything you are currently aware of. The preconscious contains everything you could become aware of but are not currently thinking about. The unconscious is the part of the mind that we cannot usually become aware of. Freud saw the unconscious as holding all the urges, thoughts and feelings that might cause us anxiety, conflict and pain. Although we are unaware of them, these urges, thoughts and feelings are considered by Freud to exert an influence on our actions.

2.2.2 Structural model of the psyche
Alongside the three levels of consciousness, Freud (1923/62, 1933) developed a structural model of personality involving what he called the id, the ego and the superego (figure 14.3). According to Freud, the id functions in the unconscious and is closely tied to instinctual and biological processes. It is the primitive core from which the ego and the superego develop. As the source of energy and impulse it has two drives:
Eros – a drive for life, love, growth and self-preservation.
Thanatos – a drive for aggression and death.

Super Ego


Figure 1.2: Structural model of the psyche

Freud said that the psyche was like an iceberg, with most of it being below the level of consciousness. The tip of the iceberg, above the water, corresponds to what we can become aware of. We are aware of some aspects of ego and superego functioning, but the processes of the id are entirely within the unconscious.
These drives, or instincts, are represented psychologically as wishes that need to be satisfied.
External or internal stimulation creates tension, which the id seeks to reduce immediately. This is called the ‘pleasure principle’– the idea that all needs have to be satisfied immediately, avoiding pain and seeking pleasure, regardless of external conditions. The id is directly linked to bodily experience and cannot deal effectively with reality. As such it is limited to two forms of response – reflex responses to simple stimuli (e.g. crying with pain), or primary process thinking (hallucinatory images of desired objects), which provides a basic discharge of tension.
According to Freud, primary process thinking does not actually meet the fundamental need of the organism – just as dreaming of water does not satisfy thirst – so a second structure, the ego, focuses on ensuring the id’s impulses are expressed effectively in the context of the real world. The ego, as a source of rationality, conforms to the ‘reality principle’ – delaying the discharge of energy from the id until an appropriate object or activity can be found. The ego engages in secondary process thinking. It takes executive action on the part of the ego to decide which actions are appropriate, which id impulses will be satisfied, how and when. But the ego has no moral sense, only practical sense. It is a third structure, the superego, which, according to Freud, provides moral guidance, embodying parental and societal values.
The superego has two sub-systems: * conscience, or images of what is right and what deserves punishment – this is the basis for guilt; and * ego ideal, or images of what is rewarded or approved of – this is the basis for pride.
Violation of superego standards can generate anxiety over loss of parental love, which is experienced as guilt. By the same token, Freud viewed a ‘weak’ superego as the cause of self indulgence and criminality.
According to Freud, the ego mediates between id impulses, superego directives and the real world. Conflicts in this process can lead to three types of anxiety: * neurotic anxiety – that the id will get out of control; * moral anxiety – that past or future behavior is immoral; or * reality anxiety – about objective dangers in the environment.
When anxiety cannot be dealt with by realistic methods, the ego calls upon various defence mechanisms to release the tension. Defence mechanisms deny, alter or falsify reality. As they operate unconsciously, they are not immediately obvious to us or to other people. Defence mechanisms include: * displacement – substituting an acceptable behavior for an anxiety-inducing one; * projection – projecting the threatening thing on to others; * reaction formation – creating an attitude opposite to the one that you hold; * intellectualization – transforming emotional or affective drives into rational intentions; and * regression – reverting to modes of behavior from childhood in order to avoid conflict.

2.2.3 Psychogenetic model of development
Freud (1900/1953) proposed that child development proceeds through a series of stages related to physical development, and that adult personality is influenced by how crises are resolved at each stage. Each stage is named after an erogenous zone, or area of the body that can experience pleasure from the environment. Excessive gratification or frustration at any one stage can result in the fixation of libido and subsequent disruption to normal personality development. * Oral stage (birth to 18 months) At the beginning of this stage children are highly dependent on their mothers and derive pleasure from sucking and swallowing. Freud suggested that children who become fixated at this early oral stage derive pleasure in adulthood from activities such as overeating, smoking, drinking and kissing. He referred to such people as oral-incorporative or oral-ingestive.
Later in the oral stage, children begin to cut teeth and experience pleasure from biting and chewing. Fixation at this later part of the stage results in chewing objects and nail-biting in adulthood, as well as being sarcastic and critical. Freud called those fixated at this level oral-aggressive or oral-sadistic.

* Anal stage (18 months to three years) At this stage pleasure is gained from the expulsion and retention of faces. This is also a stage at which children start to explore their environment but experience control and discipline from their parents. According to Freud, fixation at this stage may result in people being messy and generous – anal expulsive characters, or being mean and orderly – anal-retentive characters. * Phallic stage (three to five years) It is at the phallic stage that children discover pleasure from touching their genitals. They also become aware that they are in competition with siblings and their father for their mother’s attention. Freud believed that boys become increasingly attached to their mother at this stage and resent the presence of their father. These feelings produce anxiety or fear of punishment from the father – or castration anxiety. In order to protect themselves against this anxiety, boys identify with their fathers. Freud called boys’ desire for their mother the Oedipus complex, because of the similarity to the ancient Greek play in which Oedipus unwittingly kills his father and marries his mother.
Freud argued for a rather different process in girls. He believed that girls reject their mother at the phallic stage, owing to resentment that they have been born without a penis. They then feel increasing attraction to their father, who has the penis they lack. Penis envy is not resolved until women have a male child, thereby symbolically obtaining a penis. This process was also named after an ancient Greek play – Electra. In Greek mythology, Electra was famous for her devotion to her father, and sought revenge against her mother for her father’s death. Fixation at the phallic phase and failure to resolve the Electra or Oedipus complex was viewed as the cause of sexual and/or relationship difficulties in later life. * Latency stage (six to twelve years) According to Freud, personality is formed by the end of the phallic stage, and sexual impulses are rechannelled during the latency period into activities such as sport, learning and social activities. * Genital stage (13 years to 18 years) As young people approach the age of reproductive ability, they begin to focus their libido, or sexual energy, towards the opposite sex. If the earlier psychosexual stages have been successfully negotiated, the individual should now begin to form positive relationships with others. * Maturity (18 years to above) The genital period begins at puberty and continues throughout the individual’s lifetime. It is a stage attained by everyone who reaches physical maturity. In addition to the genital stage, Freud alluded to but never fully conceptualized a period of psychological maturity, a stage attained after a person has passed through the earlier developmental periods in an ideal manner. Unfortunately, psychological maturity seldom happens, because people have too many opportunities to develop pathological disorders or neurotic predispositions. Consciousness would play a more important role in the behavior of mature people, who would have only a minimal need to repress sexual and aggressive urges.

2.3 Critique of Freud
In criticizing Freud, we must first ask two questions: (1) Did Freud understand women? (2) Was Freud a scientist?

2.3.1 Did Freud Understand Women?
A frequent criticism of Freud is that he did not understand women and that his theory of personality was strongly oriented toward men. There is a large measure of truth to this criticism, and Freud acknowledged that he lacked a complete understanding of the female psyche.
Why didn’t Freud have a better understanding of the feminine psyche? One answer is that he was a product of his times, and society was dominated by men during those times. In 19th-century Austria, women were second-class citizens, with few rights or privileges. They had little opportunity to enter a profession or to be a member of a professional organization—such as Freud’s Wednesday Psychological Society.
Thus, during the first quarter century of psychoanalysis, the movement was an all-men’s club. After World War I, women gradually became attracted to psychoanalysis and some of these women, such as Marie Bonaparte, Ruth Mack Brunswick, Helene Deutsch, Melanie Klein, Lou Andreas-Salomé, and Anna Freud, were able to exercise some influence on Freud. However, they were never able to convince him that similarities between the genders outweighed differences.
Freud himself was a proper bourgeois Viennese gentleman whose sexual attitudes were fashioned during a time when women were expected to nurture their husbands, manage the household, care for the children, and stay out of their husband’s business or profession. Freud’s wife, Martha, was no exception to this rule (Gay, 1988).
Freud, as the oldest and most favored child, ruled over his sisters, advising them on books to read and lecturing to them about the world in general. An incident with a piano reveals further evidence of Freud’s favored position within his family. Freud’s sisters enjoyed music and found pleasure in playing a piano. When music from their piano annoyed Freud, he complained to his parents that he couldn’t concentrate on his books. The parents immediately removed the piano from the house, leaving Freud to understand that the wishes of five girls did not equal the preference of one boy.
Like many other men of his day, Freud regarded women as the “tender sex,” suitable for caring for the household and nurturing children but not equal to men in scientific and scholarly affairs. His love letters to his future wife Martha Bernays are filled with references to her as “my little girl,” “my little woman,” or “my princess” (Freud, 1960). Freud undoubtedly would have been surprised to learn that 130 years later these terms of endearment are seen by many as disparaging to women.
Freud continually grappled with trying to understand women, and his views on femininity changed several times during his lifetime. As a young student, he exclaimed to a friend, “How wise our educators that they pester the beautiful sex so little with scientific knowledge” (quoted in Gay, 1988, p. 522).
During the early years of his career, Freud viewed male and female psychosexual growth as mirror images of each other, with different but parallel lines of development. However, he later proposed the notion that little girls are failed boys and that adult women are akin to castrated men. Freud originally proposed these ideas tentatively, but as time passed, he defended them adamantly and refused to compromise his views. When people criticized his notion of femininity, Freud responded by adopting an increasingly more rigid stance. By the 1920s, he was insisting that psychological differences between men and women were due to anatomical differences and could not be explained by different socialization experiences (Freud, 1924/1961). Nevertheless, he always recognized that he did not understand women as well as he did men. He called them the “dark continent for psychology” (Freud, 1926/1959b, p. 212). In his final statement on the matter, Freud (1933/1964) suggested that “if you want to know more about femininity, enquire from your own experiences of life or turn to the poets” (p. 135).
Although some of Freud’s close associates inhabited the “dark continent” of womanhood, his most intimate friends were men. Moreover, women such as Marie Bonaparte, Lou Andreas-Salomé, and Minna Bernays (his sister-in-law), who did exert some influence on Freud, were mostly cut from a similar pattern. Ernest Jones (1955) referred to them as intellectual women with a “masculine cast” (p. 421).
These women were quite apart from Freud’s mother and wife, both of whom were proper Viennese wives and mothers whose primary concerns were for their husbands and children. Freud’s female colleagues and disciples were selected for their intelligence, emotional strength, and loyalty—the same qualities Freud found attractive in men. But none of these women could substitute for an intimate male friend. In August of 1901, Freud (1985) wrote to his friend Wilhelm Fliess, “In my life, as you know, woman has never replaced the comrade, the friend” (p. 447).
Why was Freud unable to understand women? Given his upbringing during the middle of the 19th century, parental acceptance of his domination of his sisters, a tendency to exaggerate differences between women and men, and his belief that women inhabited the “dark continent” of humanity, it seems unlikely that Freud possessed the necessary experiences to understand women. Toward the end of his life, he still had to ask, “What does a woman want?” (E. Jones, 1955, p. 421). The question itself reveals Freud’s gender bias because it assumes that women all want the same things and that their wants are somehow different from those of men.

2.3.2 Was Freud a Scientist?
A second area of criticism of Freud centers around his status as a scientist. Although he repeatedly insisted that he was primarily a scientist and that psychoanalysis was a science, Freud’s definition of science needs some explanation. When he called psychoanalysis a science, he was attempting to separate it from a philosophy or an ideology. He was not claiming that it was a natural science. The German language and culture of Freud’s day made a distinction between a natural science (Naturwissenschaften) and a human science (Geisteswissenschaften). Unfortunately, James
Strachey’s translations in the Standard Edition make Freud seem to be a natural scientist. However, other scholars (Federn, 1988; Holder, 1988) believe that Freud clearly saw himself as a human scientist, that is, a humanist or scholar and not a natural scientist. In order to render Freud’s works more accurate and more humanistic, a group of language scholars are currently producing an updated translation of Freud. (See, for example, Freud, 1905/2002.) Bruno Bettelheim (1982, 1983) was also critical of Strachey’s translations. He contended that the Standard Edition used precise medical concepts and misleading Greek and Latin terms instead of the ordinary, often ambiguous, German words that Freud had chosen. Such precision tended to render Freud more scientific and less humanistic than he appears to the German reader. For example, Bettelheim, whose introduction to Freud was in German, believed that Freud saw psychoanalytic therapy as a spiritual journey into the depths of the soul (translated by Strachey as “mind”) and not a mechanistic analysis of the mental apparatus.
As a result of Freud’s 19th-century German view of science, many contemporary writers regard his theory-building methods as untenable and rather unscientific (Breger, 2000; Crews, 1995, 1996; Sulloway, 1992; Webster, 1995). His theories were not based on experimental investigation but rather on subjective observations that Freud made of himself and his clinical patients. These patients were not representative of people in general but came mostly from the middle and upper classes.
Apart from this widespread popular and professional interest, the question remains: Was Freud scientific? Freud’s (1915/1957a) own description of science permits much room for subjective interpretations and indefinite definitions: We have often heard it maintained that sciences should be built up on clear and sharply defined basic concepts. In actual fact no science, not even the most exact, begins with such definitions. The true beginning of scientific activity consists rather in describing phenomena and then in proceeding to group, classify and correlate them. Even at the stage of description it is not possible to avoid applying certain abstract ideas to the material in hand, ideas derived from somewhere or other but certainly not from the new observations alone. (p. 117) Perhaps Freud himself left us with the best description of how he built his theories. In 1900, shortly after the publication of Interpretation of Dreams, he wrote to his friend Wilhelm Fliess, confessing that “I am actually not at all a man of science, not an observer, not an experimenter, not a thinker. I am by temperament nothing but a conquistador—an adventurer . . . with all the curiosity, daring, and tenacity characteristic of a man of this sort” (Freud, 1985, p. 398).
Although Freud at times may have seen himself as a conquistador, he also believed that he was constructing a scientific theory. How well does that theory meet the six criteria for a useful theory that we identified in Chapter 1? Despite serious difficulties in testing Freud’s assumptions, researchers have conducted studies that relate either directly or indirectly to psychoanalytic theory. Thus, we rate Freudian theory about average in its ability to generate research.
Second, a useful theory should be falsifiable. Because much of the research evidence consistent with Freud’s ideas can also be explained by other models, Freudian theory is nearly impossible to falsify. A good example of the difficulty of falsifying psychoanalysis is the story of the woman who dreamed that her mother-in-law was coming for a visit. The content of his dream could not be a wish fulfillment because the woman hated her mother-in-law and would not wish for a visit from her. Freud escaped this conundrum by explaining that the woman had the dream merely to spite Freud and to prove to him that not all dreams are wish fulfillments. This kind of reasoning clearly gives Freudian theory a very low rating on its ability to generate falsifiable hypotheses.
A third criterion of any useful theory is its ability to organize knowledge into a meaningful framework. Unfortunately, the framework of Freud’s personality theory, with its emphasis on the unconscious, is so loose and flexible that seemingly inconsistent data can coexist within its boundaries. Compared with other theories of personality, psychoanalysis ventures more answers to questions concerning why people behave as they do. But only some of these answers come from scientific investigations— most are simply logical extensions of Freud’s basic assumptions. Thus, we rate psychoanalysis as having only moderate ability to organize knowledge.
Fourth, a useful theory should serve as a guide for the solution of practical problems. Because Freudian theory is unusually comprehensive, many psychoanalytically trained practitioners rely on it to find solutions to practical day-to-day problems. However, psychoanalysis no longer dominates the field of psychotherapy, and most present-day therapists use other theoretical orientations in their practice. Thus, we give psychoanalysis a low rating as a guide to the practitioner.
The fifth criterion of a useful theory deals with internal consistency, including operationally defined terms. Psychoanalysis is an internally consistent theory, if one remembers that Freud wrote over a period of more than 40 years and gradually altered the meaning of some concepts during that time. However, at any single point in time, the theory generally possessed internal consistency, although some specific terms were used with less than scientific rigor. Does psychoanalysis possess a set of operationally defined terms? Here the theory definitely falls short. Such terms as id, ego, superego, conscious, preconscious, unconscious, oral stage, sadistic-anal stage, phallic stage, Oedipus complex, latent level of dreams, and many others are not operationally defined; that is, they are not spelled out in terms of specific operations or behaviors. Researchers must originate their own particular definition of most psychoanalytic terms.
Sixth, psychoanalysis is not a simple or parsimonious theory, but considering its comprehensiveness and the complexity of human personality, it is not needlessly cumbersome.

A number of notable theorists followed Freud. Some had worked with him and then moved on to develop their own versions of psychoanalytic theory. These theorists have been called neo analytic, post-Freudian and psychodynamic, in order to differentiate their work from Freud’s.

2.4.1 Jung’s aims and aspirations
Carl Jung (1875–1961) was one of the first prominent analysts to break away from Freud. Jung worked with Freud in the early stages of his career, and was viewed by him as the disciple who would carry on the Freudian tradition. But Jung saw humans as being guided as much by aims and aspirations as by sex and aggression.
To distinguish his approach from classic psychoanalysis, Jung named it analytical psychology (1951). A basic assumption of his theory is that personality consists of competing forces and structures within the individual that must be balanced. Unlike Freud, he emphasized conflicts between opposing forces within the individual, rather than between the individual and the demands of society, or between the individual and reality. Analytical psychology the theory of personality developed by Carl Jung, in which people are viewed as striving towards self-actualization.

2.4.2 Horney’s optimism
Karen Horney (1885–1952) was another disciple of Freud who developed a theory that deviated from basic Freudian principles. Horney adopted a more optimistic view of human life, emphasizing human growth and self-realization. She concentrated on early childhood development, and her work formed the basis of much later work in this area.
One of Horney’s major contributions was her challenge to Freud’s treatment of women. She countered that, in the early part of the twentieth century, women were more likely to be affected by social and cultural oppression than the absence of a penis.

2.5 The failings of psychoanalytic theory
Freud was an original thinker who created a comprehensive theory of human behavior, which had a profound impact on twentieth century society, as well as in areas of human endeavor such as art and literature. Few theorists in any scientific discipline have attained such a degree of fame, and few theoretical concepts have been so fully incorporated into Western culture. Despite this, Karl Popper (1957) declared that psychoanalysis is a pseudoscience because it is inherently untestable. He argued that psychoanalysis is unfalsifiable because the logic of the theory allows for any finding to be explained in different ways. For example, Freud states that aggressive impulses can lead either to aggressive actions or to reaction formations against them. So it is impossible to test definitively any hypotheses about aggressive action.
Freudian psychoanalytic theory presents imprecise concepts and metaphors based on Freud’s interpretation of unrecorded therapy sessions, and as such it cannot be thoroughly examined through experimental and scientific methods. Nevertheless, recent developments within cognitive psychology concerning human memory and subliminal perception have reopened the unconscious for serious scientific investigation. For a related consideration from the neuropsychological perspective, see Faulkner and Foster (2002). These authors argue that the effects of brain injury may teach us a considerable amount about the relationship between the conscious and unconscious mind.

Erich Fromm’s basic thesis is that modern-day people have been torn away from their prehistoric union with nature and also with one another, yet they have the power of reasoning, foresight, and imagination. This combination of lack of animal instincts and presence of rational thought makes humans the freaks of the universe. Self-awareness contributes to feelings of loneliness, isolation, and homelessness. To escape from these feelings, people strive to become reunited with nature and with their fellow human beings.
Trained in Freudian psychoanalysis and influenced by Karl Marx, Karen Horney, and other socially oriented theorists, Fromm developed a theory of personality that emphasizes the influence of sociobiological factors, history, economics, and class structure. His humanistic psychoanalysis assumes that humanity’s separation from the natural world has produced feelings of loneliness and isolation, a condition called basic anxiety.
Fromm was more than a personality theorist. He was a social critic, psychotherapist, philosopher, biblical scholar, cultural anthropologist, and psycho biographer. His humanistic psychoanalysis looks at people from a historical and cultural perspective rather than a strictly psychological one. It is less concerned with the individual and more concerned with those characteristics common to a culture.
Fromm takes an evolutionary view of humanity. When humans emerged as a separate species in animal evolution, they lost most of their animal instincts but gained “an increase in brain development that permitted self-awareness, imagination, planning, and doubt” (Fromm, 1992, p. 5). This combination of weak instincts and a highly developed brain makes humans distinct from all other animals.
A more recent event in human history has been the rise of capitalism, which on one hand has contributed to the growth of leisure time and personal freedom, but on the other hand, it has resulted in feelings of anxiety, isolation, and powerlessness. The cost of freedom, Fromm maintained, has exceeded its benefits. The isolation wrought by capitalism has been unbearable, leaving people with two alternatives: (1) to escape from freedom into interpersonal dependencies, or (2) to move to self-realization through productive love and work.

3.1 Fromm’s Basic Assumptions
Fromm’s most basic assumption is that individual personality can be understood only in the light of human history. “The discussion of the human situation must precede that of personality, [and] psychology must be based on an anthropologicphilosophical concept of human existence” (Fromm, 1947, p. 45).
Fromm (1947) believed that humans, unlike other animals, have been “torn away” from their prehistoric union with nature. They have no powerful instincts to adapt to a changing world; instead, they have acquired the facility to reason—a condition Fromm called the human dilemma. People experience this basic dilemma because they have become separate from nature and yet have the capacity to be aware of themselves as isolated beings. The human ability to reason, therefore, is both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, it permits people to survive, but on the other, it forces them to attempt to solve basic insoluble dichotomies. Fromm referred to these as “existential dichotomies” because they are rooted in people’s very existence. Humans cannot do away with these existential dichotomies; they can only react to these dichotomies relative to their culture and their individual personalities.
The first and most fundamental dichotomy is that between life and death. Self-awareness and reason tell us that we will die, but we try to negate this dichotomy by postulating life after death, an attempt that does not alter the fact that our lives end with death.
A second existential dichotomy is that humans are capable of conceptualizing the goal of complete self-realization, but we also are aware that life is too short to reach that goal. “Only if the life span of the individual were identical with that of mankind could he participate in the human development which occurs in the historical process” (Fromm, 1947, p. 42). Some people try to solve this dichotomy by assuming that their own historical period is the crowning achievement of humanity, while others postulate a continuation of development after death.
The third existential dichotomy is that people are ultimately alone, yet we cannot tolerate isolation. They are aware of themselves as separate individuals, and at the same time, they believe that their happiness depends on uniting with their fellow human beings. Although people cannot completely solve the problem of aloneness versus union, they must make an attempt or run the risk of insanity.

3.2 Human Needs
As animals, humans are motivated by such physiological needs as hunger, sex, and safety; but they can never resolve their human dilemma by satisfying these animal needs. Only the distinctive human needs can move people toward a reunion with the natural world. These existential needs have emerged during the evolution of human culture, growing out of their attempts to find an answer to their existence and to avoid becoming insane. Indeed, Fromm (1955) contended that one important difference between mentally healthy individuals and neurotic or insane ones is that healthy people find answers to their existence—answers that more completely correspond to their total human needs. In other words, healthy individuals are better able to find ways of reuniting to the world by productively solving the human needs of relatedness, transcendence, rootedness, a sense of identity, and a frame of orientation.
3.2.1 Relatedness
The first human, or existential, need is relatedness, the drive for union with another person or other persons. Fromm postulated three basic ways in which a person may relate to the world: (1) submission, (2) power, and (3) love. A person can submit to another, to a group, or to an institution in order to become one with the world. “In this way he transcends the separateness of his individual existence by becoming part of somebody or something bigger than himself and experiences his identity in connection with the power to which he has submitted” (Fromm, 1981, p. 2).
Whereas submissive people search for a relationship with domineering people, power seekers welcome submissive partners. When a submissive person and a domineering person find each other, they frequently establish a symbiotic relationship, one that is satisfying to both partners. Although such symbiosis may be gratifying, it blocks growth toward integrity and psychological health. The two partners “live on each other and from each other, satisfying their craving for closeness, yet suffering from the lack of inner strength and self-reliance which would require freedom and independence” (Fromm, 1981, p. 2).
People in symbiotic relationships are drawn to one another not by love but by a desperate need for relatedness, a need that can never be completely satisfied by such a partnership. Underlying the union are unconscious feelings of hostility. People in symbiotic relationships blame their partners for not being able to completely satisfy their needs. They find themselves seeking additional submission or power, and as a result, they become more and more dependent on their partners and less and less of an individual.
Fromm believed that love is the only route by which a person can become united with the world and, at the same time, achieve individuality and integrity. He defined love as a “union with somebody, or something outside oneself under the condition of retaining the separateness and integrity of one’s own self” (Fromm, 1981, p. 3). Love involves sharing and communion with another, yet it allows a person the freedom to be unique and separate. It enables a person to satisfy the need for relatedness without surrendering integrity and independence. In love, two people become one yet remain two.
In The Art of Loving, Fromm (1956) identified care, responsibility, respect, and knowledge as four basic elements common to all forms of genuine love. Someone who loves another person must care for that person and be willing to take care of him or her. Love also means responsibility, that is, a willingness and ability to respond. A person who loves others responds to their physical and psychological needs, respects them for who they are, and avoids the temptation of trying to change them. But people can respect others only if they have knowledge of them. To know others means to see them from their own point of view. Thus, care, responsibility, respect, and knowledge are all entwined in a love relationship.

3.2.2 Transcendence
Like other animals, humans are thrown into the world without their consent or will and then removed from it—again without their consent or will. But unlike other animals, human beings are driven by the need for transcendence, defined as the urge to rise above a passive and accidental existence and into “the realm of purposefulness and freedom” (Fromm, 1981, p. 4). Just as relatedness can be pursued through either productive or nonproductive methods, transcendence can be sought through either positive or negative approaches. People can transcend their passive nature by either creating life or by destroying it. Although other animals can create life through reproduction, only humans are aware of themselves as creators. Also, humans can be creative in other ways. They can create art, religions, ideas, laws, material production, and love.
To create means to be active and to care about that which we create. But we can also transcend life by destroying it and thus rising above our slain victims. In The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness, Fromm (1973) argued that humans are the only species to use malignant aggression: that is, to kill for reasons other than survival. Although malignant aggression is a dominant and powerful passion in some individuals and cultures, it is not common to all humans. It apparently was unknown to many prehistoric societies as well as some contemporary “primitive” societies.

3.2.3 Rootedness
A third existential need is for rootedness, or the need to establish roots or to feel at home again in the world. When humans evolved as a separate species, they lost their home in the natural world. At the same time, their capacity for thought enabled them to realize that they were without a home, without roots. The consequent feelings of isolation and helplessness became unbearable.
Rootedness, too, can be sought in either productive or nonproductive strategies. With the productive strategy, people are weaned from the orbit of their mother and become fully born; that is, they actively and creatively relate to the world and become whole or integrated. This new tie to the natural world confers security and reestablishes a sense of belongingness and rootedness. However, people may also seek rootedness through the nonproductive strategy of fixation—a tenacious reluctance to move beyond the protective security provided by one’s mother. People who strive for rootedness through fixation are “afraid to take the next step of birth, to be weaned from the mother’s breast. [They] . . . have a deep craving to be mothered, nursed, protected by a motherly figure; they are the externally dependent ones, who are frightened and insecure when motherly protection is withdrawn” (Fromm, 1955, p. 40).
Rootedness can also be seen phylogenetically in the evolution of the human species. Fromm agreed with Freud that incestuous desires are universal, but he disagreed with Freud’s belief that they are essentially sexual. According to Fromm (1955, pp. 40–41), incestuous feelings are based in “the deep-seated craving to remain in, or to return to, the all-enveloping womb, or to the all-nourishing breasts.”
Fromm was influenced by Johann Jakob Bachofen’s (1861/1967) ideas on early matriarchal societies. Unlike Freud, who believed that early societies were patriarchal, Bachofen held that the mother was the central figure in these ancient social groups. It was she who provided roots for her children and motivated them either to develop their individuality and reason or to become fixated and incapable of psychological growth.
Fromm’s (1997) strong preference for Bachofen’s mother-centered theory of the Oedipal situation over Freud’s father-centered conception is consistent with his preference for older women. Fromm’s first wife, Frieda Fromm-Reichmann, was more than 10 years older than Fromm, and his long-time lover, Karen Horney, was 15 years his senior. Fromm’s conception of the Oedipus complex as a desire to return to the mother’s womb or breast or to a person with a mothering function should be viewed in light of his attraction to older women.

3.2.4 Sense of Identity
The fourth human need is for a sense of identity, or the capacity to be aware of ourselves as a separate entity. Because we have been torn away from nature, we need to form a concept of our self, to be able to say, “I am I,” or “I am the subject of my actions.” Fromm (1981) believed that primitive people identified more closely with their clan and did not see themselves as individuals existing apart from their group. Even during medieval times, people were identified largely by their social role in the feudal hierarchy. In agreement with Marx, Fromm believed that the rise of capitalism has given people more economic and political freedom. However, this freedom has given only a minority of people a true sense of “I.” The identity of most people still resides in their attachment to others or to institutions such as nation, religion, occupation, or social group.
Instead of the pre-individualistic clan identity, a new herd identity develops in which the sense of identity rests on the sense of an unquestionable belonging to the crowd. That this uniformity and conformity are often not recognized as such, and are covered by the illusion of individuality, does not alter the facts. (p. 9) Without a sense of identity, people could not retain their sanity, and this threat provides a powerful motivation to do almost anything to acquire a sense of identity. Neurotics try to attach themselves to powerful people or to social or political institutions. Healthy people, however, have less need to conform to the herd, less need to give up their sense of self. They do not have to surrender their freedom and individuality in order to fit into society because they possess an authentic sense of identity.

Table 1.1 Summary of Fromm’s Human Needs | Negative Components | Positive Components | Relatedness | Submission or domination | Love | Transcendence | Destructiveness | Creativeness | Rootedness | Fixation | Wholeness | Sense of identity | Adjustment to a group | Individuality | Frame of orientation | Irrational goals | Rational goals | | | |

3.3 The Burden of Freedom
The central thesis of Fromm’s writings is that humans have been torn from nature, yet they remain part of the natural world, subject to the same physical limitations as other animals. As the only animal possessing self-awareness, imagination, and reason, humans are “the freak[s] of the universe” (Fromm, 1955, p. 23). Reason is both a curse and a blessing. It is responsible for feelings of isolation and loneliness, but it is also the process that enables humans to become reunited with the world. Historically, as people gained more and more economic and political freedom, they came to feel increasingly more isolated. For example, during the Middle Ages people had relatively little personal freedom. They were anchored to prescribed roles in society, roles that provided security, dependability, and certainty. Then, as they acquired more freedom to move both socially and geographically, they found that they were free from the security of a fixed position in the world. They were no longer tied to one geographic region, one social order, or one occupation. They became separated from their roots and isolated from one another.
A parallel experience exists on a personal level. As children become more independent of their mothers, they gain more freedom to express their individuality, to move around unsupervised, to choose their friends, clothes, and so on. At the same time, they experience the burden of freedom; that is, they are free from the security of being one with the mother. On both a social and an individual level, this burden of freedom results in basic anxiety, the feeling of being alone in the world.

3.4 Mechanisms of Escape
Because basic anxiety produces a frightening sense of isolation and aloneness, people attempt to flee from freedom through a variety of escape mechanisms. In Escape from Freedom, Fromm (1941) identified three primary mechanisms of escape— authoritarianism, destructiveness, and conformity. Unlike Horney’s neurotic trends (see Chapter 6), Fromm’s mechanisms of escape are the driving forces in normal people, both individually and collectively.

3.4.1 Authoritarianism
Fromm (1941) defined authoritarianism as the “tendency to give up the independence of one’s own individual self and to fuse one’s self with somebody or something outside oneself, in order to acquire the strength which the individual is lacking” 196 Part II Psychodynamic Theories
(p. 141). This need to unite with a powerful partner can take one of two forms— masochism or sadism. Masochism results from basic feelings of powerlessness, weakness, and inferiority and is aimed at joining the self to a more powerful person or institution. Masochistic strivings often are disguised as love or loyalty, but unlike love and loyalty, they can never contribute positively to independence and authenticity. Compared with masochism, sadism is more neurotic and more socially harmful. Like masochism, sadism is aimed at reducing basic anxiety through achieving unity with another person or persons. Fromm (1941) identified three kinds of sadistic tendencies, all more or less clustered together. The first is the need to make others dependent on oneself and to gain power over those who are weak. The second is the compulsion to exploit others, to take advantage of them, and to use them for one’s benefit or pleasure. A third sadistic tendency is the desire to see others suffer, either physically or psychologically.

3.4.2 Destructiveness
Like authoritarianism, destructiveness is rooted in the feelings of aloneness, isolation, and powerlessness. Unlike sadism and masochism, however, destructiveness does not depend on a continuous relationship with another person; rather, it seeks to do away with other people.
Both individuals and nations can employ destructiveness as a mechanism of escape. By destroying people and objects, a person or a nation attempts to restore lost feelings of power. However, by destroying other persons or nations, destructive people eliminate much of the outside world and thus acquire a type of perverted isolation.

3.4.3 Conformity
A third means of escape is conformity. People who conform try to escape from a sense of aloneness and isolation by giving up their individuality and becoming whatever other people desire them to be. Thus, they become like robots, reacting predictably and mechanically to the whims of others. They seldom express their own opinion, cling to expected standards of behavior, and often appear stiff and automated.
People in the modern world are free from many external bonds and are free to act according to their own will, but at the same time, they do not know what they want, think, or feel. They conform like automatons to an anonymous authority and adopt a self that is not authentic. The more they conform, the more powerless they feel; the more powerless they feel, the more they must conform. People can break this cycle of conformity and powerlessness only by achieving self-realization or positive freedom (Fromm, 1941).

3.4.4 Positive Freedom
The emergence of political and economic freedom does not lead inevitably to the bondage of isolation and powerlessness. A person “can be free and not alone, critical and yet not filled with doubts, independent and yet an integral part of mankind” (Fromm, 1941, p. 257). People can attain this kind of freedom, called positive freedom, by a spontaneous and full expression of both their rational and their emotional potentialities. Spontaneous activity is frequently seen in small children and in artists who have little or no tendency to conform to whatever others want them to be.
They act according to their basic natures and not according to conventional rules. Positive freedom represents a successful solution to the human dilemma of being part of the natural world and yet separate from it. Through positive freedom and spontaneous activity, people overcome the terror of aloneness, achieve union with the world, and maintain individuality. Fromm (1941) held that love and work are the twin components of positive freedom. Through active love and work, humans unite with one another and with the world without sacrificing their integrity. They affirm their uniqueness as individuals and achieve full realization of their potentialities.

3.5 Character Orientations
In Fromm’s theory, personality is reflected in one’s character orientation, that is, a person’s relatively permanent way of relating to people and things. Fromm (1947) defined personality as “the totality of inherited and acquired psychic qualities which are characteristic of one individual and which make the individual unique” (p. 50). The most important of the acquired qualities of personality is character, defined as “the relatively permanent system of all no instinctual strivings through which man relates himself to the human and natural world” (Fromm, 1973, p. 226). Fromm (1992) believed that character is a substitute for lack of instincts. Instead of acting according to their instincts, people act according to their character. If they had to stop and think about the consequences of their behavior, their actions would be very inefficient and inconsistent. By acting according to their character traits, humans can behave both efficiently and consistently. People relate to the world in two ways—by acquiring and using things (assimilation) and by relating to self and others (socialization). In general terms, people can relate to things and to people either nonproductively or productively.

3.5.1 Nonproductive Orientations
People can acquire things through any one of four nonproductive orientations: (1) receiving things passively, (2) exploiting, or taking things through force, (3) hoarding objects, and (4) marketing or exchanging things. Fromm used the term “nonproductive” to suggest strategies that fail to move people closer to positive freedom and self-realization. Nonproductive orientations are, however, not entirely negative; each has both a negative and a positive aspect. Personality is always a blend or combination of several orientations, even though one orientation is dominant. Receptive
Receptive characters feel that the source of all good lies outside themselves and that the only way they can relate to the world is to receive things, including love, knowledge, and material possessions. They are more concerned with receiving than with giving, and they want others to shower them with love, ideas, and gifts. The negative qualities of receptive people include passivity, submissiveness, and lack of self-confidence. Their positive traits are loyalty, acceptance, and trust. Exploitative
Like receptive people, exploitative characters believe that the source of all good is outside themselves. Unlike receptive people, however, they aggressively take what they desire rather than passively receive it. In their social relationships, they are likely to use cunning or force to take someone else’s spouse, ideas, or property. An exploitative man may “fall in love” with a married woman, not so much because he is truly fond of her, but because he wishes to exploit her husband. In the realm of ideas, exploitative people prefer to steal or plagiarize rather than create. Unlike receptive characters, they are willing to express an opinion, but it is usually an opinion that has been pilfered. On the negative side, exploitative characters are egocentric, conceited, arrogant, and seducing. On the positive side, they are impulsive, proud, charming, and self-confident. Hoarding
Rather than valuing things outside themselves, hoarding characters seek to save that which they have already obtained. They hold everything inside and do not let go of anything. They keep money, feelings, and thoughts to themselves. In a love relationship, they try to possess the loved one and to preserve the relationship rather than allowing it to change and grow. They tend to live in the past and are repelled by anything new. They are similar to Freud’s anal characters in that they are excessively orderly, stubborn, and miserly. Fromm (1964), however, believed that hoarding characters’ anal traits are not the result of sexual drives but rather are part of their general interest in all that is not alive, including the feces. Negative traits of the hoarding personality include rigidity, sterility, obstinacy, compulsivity, and lack of creativity; positive characteristics are orderliness, cleanliness, and punctuality. Marketing
The marketing character is an outgrowth of modern commerce in which trade is no longer personal but carried out by large, faceless corporations. Consistent with the demands of modern commerce, marketing characters see themselves as commodities, with their personal value dependent on their exchange value, that is, their ability to sell themselves.
Marketing, or exchanging, personalities must see themselves as being in constant demand; they must make others believe that they are skillful and salable. Their personal security rests on shaky ground because they must adjust their personality to that which is currently in fashion. They play many roles and are guided by the motto “‘I am as you desire me’” (Fromm, 1947, p. 73). Marketing people are without a past or a future and have no permanent principles or values. They have fewer positive traits than the other orientations because they are basically empty vessels waiting to be filled with whatever characteristic is most marketable.
Negative traits of marketing characters are aimless, opportunistic, inconsistent, and wasteful. Some of their positive qualities include changeability, openmindedness, adaptability, and generosity.

3.5.2 The Productive Orientation
The single productive orientation has three dimensions—working, loving, and reasoning. Because productive people work toward positive freedom and a continuing realization of their potential, they are the most healthy of all character types. Only through productive activity can people solve the basic human dilemma: that is, to unite with the world and with others while retaining uniqueness and individuality. This solution can be accomplished only through productive work, love, and thought. Healthy people value work not as an end in itself, but as a means of creative self-expression. They do not work to exploit others, to market themselves, to withdraw from others, or to accumulate needless material possessions. They are neither lazy nor compulsively active, but use work as a means of producing life’s necessities. Productive love is characterized by the four qualities of love discussed earlier— care, responsibility, respect, and knowledge. In addition to these four characteristics, healthy people possess biophilia: that is, a passionate love of life and all that is alive. Biophilic people desire to further all life—the life of people, animals, plants, ideas, and cultures. They are concerned with the growth and development of themselves as well as others. Biophilic individuals want to influence people through love, reason, and example—not by force.
Fromm believed that love of others and self-love are inseparable but that selflove must come first. All people have the capacity for productive love, but most do not achieve it because they cannot first love themselves. Productive thinking, which cannot be separated from productive work and love, is motivated by a concerned interest in another person or object. Healthy people see others as they are and not as they would wish them to be. Similarly, they know themselves for who they are and have no need for self-delusion.
Fromm (1947) believed that healthy people rely on some combination of all five character orientations. Their survival as healthy individuals depends on their ability to receive things from other people, to take things when appropriate, to preserve things, to exchange things, and to work, love, and think productively.

3.6 Personality Disorders
If healthy people are able to work, love, and think productively, then unhealthy personalities are marked by problems in these three areas, especially failure to love productively. Fromm (1981) held that psychologically disturbed people are incapable of love and have failed to establish union with others. He discussed three severe personality disorders—necrophilia, malignant narcissism, and incestuous symbiosis.

3.6.1 Necrophilia
The term “necrophilia” means love of death and usually refers to a sexual perversion in which a person desires sexual contact with a corpse. However, Fromm (1964, 1973) used necrophilia in a more generalized sense to denote any attraction to death. Necrophilia is an alternative character orientation to biophilia. People naturally love life, but when social conditions stunt biophilia, they may adopt a necrophilic orientation. Necrophilic personalities hate humanity; they are racists, warmongers, and bullies; they love bloodshed, destruction, terror, and torture; and they delight in destroying life. They are strong advocates of law and order; love to talk about sickness, death, and burials; and they are fascinated by dirt, decay, corpses, and feces. They prefer night to day and love to operate in darkness and shadow. Necrophilous people do not simply behave in a destructive manner; rather, their destructive behavior is a reflection of their basic character. All people behave aggressively and destructively at times, but the entire lifestyle of the necrophilous person revolves around death, destruction, disease, and decay.

3.6.2 Malignant Narcissism
Just as all people display some necrophilic behavior, so too do all have some narcissistic tendencies. Healthy people manifest a benign form of narcissism, that is, an interest in their own body. However, in its malignant form, narcissism impedes the perception of reality so that everything belonging to a narcissistic person is highly valued and everything belonging to another is devalued. Narcissistic individuals are preoccupied with themselves, but this concern is not limited to admiring themselves in a mirror. Preoccupation with one’s body often leads to hypochondriasis, or an obsessive attention to one’s health. Fromm (1964) also discussed moral hypochondria sis, or a preoccupation with guilt about previous transgressions. People who are fixated on themselves are likely to internalize experiences and to dwell on both physical health and moral virtues.
Narcissistic people possess what Horney (see Chapter 6) called “neurotic claims.” They achieve security by holding on to the distorted belief that their extraordinary personal qualities give them superiority over everyone else. Because what they have—looks, physique, wealth—is so wonderful; they believe that they need not do anything to prove their value. Their sense of worth depends on their narcissistic self-image and not on their achievements. When their efforts are criticized by others, they react with anger and rage, frequently striking out against their critics, trying to destroy them. If the criticism is overwhelming, they may be unable to destroy it, and so they turn their rage inward. The result is depression, a feeling of worthlessness. Although depression, intense guilt, and hypochondria sis may appear to be anything but self-glorification, Fromm believed that each of these could be symptomatic of deep underlying narcissism.

3.6.3 Incestuous Symbiosis
A third pathological orientation is incestuous symbiosis, or an extreme dependence on the mother or mother surrogate. Incestuous symbiosis is an exaggerated form of the more common and more benign mother fixation. Men with a mother fixation need a woman to care for them, dote on them, and admire them; they feel somewhat anxious and depressed when their needs are not fulfilled. This condition is relatively normal and does not greatly interfere with their daily life. With incestuous symbiosis, however, people are inseparable from the host person; their personalities are blended with the other person and their individual identities are lost. Incestuous symbiosis originates in infancy as a natural attachment to the mothering one. The attachment is more crucial and fundamental than any sexual interest that may develop during the oedipal period. Fromm agreed more with Harry Stack Sullivan than with Freud in suggesting that attachment to the mother rests on the need for security and not for sex. “Sexual strivings are not the cause of the fixation to mother, but the result” (Fromm, 1964, p. 99). People living in incestuous symbiotic relationships feel extremely anxious and frightened if that relationship is threatened. They believe that they cannot live without their mother substitute. (The host need not be another human—it can be a family, a business, a church, or a nation.) The incestuous orientation distorts reasoning powers, destroys the capacity for authentic love, and prevents people from achieving independence and integrity.
Some pathologic individuals possess all three personality disorders; that is, they are attracted to death (necrophilia), take pleasure in destroying those whom they regard as inferiors (malignant narcissism), and possess a neurotic symbiotic relationship with their mother or mother substitute (incestuous symbiosis). Such people formed what Fromm called the syndrome of decay. He contrasted these pathological people with those who are marked by the syndrome of growth, which is made up of the opposite qualities: namely, biophilia, love, and positive freedom. As shown in Figure 7.1, both the syndrome of decay and the syndrome of growth are extreme forms of development; most people have average psychological health.

3.7 The Burden of Freedom and Political Persuasions
One area of research where Fromm’s ideas also continue to be influential is in the development of political beliefs (de Zavala & Van Bergh, 2007; Jost, Glaser, Kruglanski, & Sulloway, 2003; Oesterreich, 2005). Fromm’s mechanisms of escape as a response to the burden of freedom are implicated in political beliefs, particularly in authoritarianism and conformity. Authoritarianism, for example, involves acquiring strength by uniting with a person or a belief system that is more powerful than the individual seeking strength (Fromm, 1941). Being devoutly loyal to one political party is a way to unite with a system more powerful than the individual.
Similarly, conformity involves giving up one’s individuality and becoming whatever other people desire one to be. Conformity often involves giving up independent thought by going along with the beliefs and stance of one particular political party. For personality psychologists, one interesting aspect of political beliefs is to examine how people develop the political persuasions they do and whether personality can predict which type of political party any given individual will be drawn to.
Fromm (1941) articulated how people might be drawn to strongly endorse one political party over another, but his theory does not clearly articulate which party an individual will be drawn to. In the United States, there are two big political parties: the Republicans (conservative) and the Democrats (liberal). Yet, what kind of person is more likely to become a Republican or a Democrat? Jack and Jeanne Block (2006) conducted a longitudinal study in which they assessed the personality of a group of preschoolers. Almost 20 years later, they followed up with these participants (many of whom were now in or had recently graduated from college) and asked about their political beliefs. When the participants were in preschool, they were evaluated on a variety of personality dimensions by their preschool teachers who had been trained in personality assessment.
Twenty years after preschool, the researchers asked these now young adults to complete some self-report questionnaires assessing political beliefs. Children who were described by their teachers 20 years previously as being easily offended, indecisive, fearful, and rigid were more likely to be politically conservative in their twenties. Children who had been described as being self-reliant, energetic, somewhat dominating, and relatively under controlled in preschool grew up to be more liberal.
This research shows not only how people grow up to deal with their “burden of freedom” differently, to use Fromm’s words, but it also shows the remarkably powerful predictive ability of personality, even when personality is measured at a very young age.

3.8 Critique of Fromm
Erich Fromm was perhaps the most brilliant essayist of all personality theorists. He wrote beautiful essays on international politics (Fromm, 1961); on the relevance of biblical prophets for people today (Fromm, 1986); on the psychological problems of the aging (Fromm, 1981); on Marx, Hitler, Freud, and Christ; and on myriad other topics. Regardless of the topic, at the core of all Fromm’s writings can be found an unfolding of the essence of human nature.
Like other psychodynamic theorists, Fromm tended to take a global approach to theory construction, erecting a grand, highly abstract model that was more philosophical than scientific. His insights into human nature strike a responsive chord, as evidenced by the popularity of his books. Unfortunately, his essays and arguments are not as popularly known today as they were 50 years ago. Paul Roazen (1996) stated that, during the mid-1950s, a person could not be considered educated without having read Fromm’s eloquently written Escape from Freedom. Today, however, Fromm’s books are seldom required reading on college campuses. Eloquence, of course, does not equal science. From a scientific perspective, we must ask how Fromm’s ideas rate on the six criteria of a useful theory. First, Fromm’s imprecise and vague terms have rendered his ideas nearly sterile as a generator of empirical research. Indeed, our search of the last 45 years of psychology literature yielded fewer than a dozen empirical studies that directly tested Fromm’s theoretical assumptions. This paucity of scientific investigations places him among the least empirically validated of all the theorists covered in this book.
Second, Fromm’s theory is too philosophical to be either falsifiable or verifiable. Nearly any empirical findings generated by Fromm’s theory (if they existed) could be explained by alternative theories.
Third, the breadth of Fromm’s theory enables it to organize and explain much of what is known about human personality. Fromm’s social, political, and historical perspective provides both breadth and depth for understanding the human condition; but his theory’s lack of precision makes prediction difficult and falsification impossible.
Fourth, as a guide to action, the chief value of Fromm’s writings is to stimulate readers to think productively. Unfortunately, however, neither the researcher nor the therapist receives much practical information from Fromm’s essays.
Fifth, Fromm’s views are internally consistent in the sense that a single theme runs throughout his writings. However, the theory lacks a structured taxonomy, a set of operationally defined terms, and a clear limitation of scope. Therefore, it rates low on internal consistency.
Finally, because Fromm was reluctant to abandon earlier concepts or to relate them precisely to his later ideas, his theory lacks simplicity and unity. For these reasons, we rate Fromm’s theory low on the criterion of parsimony.

Traits – or descriptors used to label personality – have their origins in the ways we describe personality in everyday language. In the early years of personality theory, many theorists used the term types to describe differences between people. Sheldon (1954), for example, categorized people according to three bodies type (see figure 14.5) and related these physical differences to differences in personality. Endomorphic body types are plump and round with a tendency to be relaxed and outgoing. Mesomorphic physiques are strong and muscular, and usually energetic and assertive in personality. Ectomorphic body types are tall and thin and tend to have a fearful and restrained personality. Not only is it unlikely that personality can be mapped to body type, but the idea that all people can be allocated to a small number of categories is challenged by modern trait theories.
Modern theorists view traits as continuous rather than discrete entities. So, rather than being divided into categories, people are placed on a trait continuum representing how high or low each individual is on any particular dimension. The assumption is that we all possess each of these traits to a greater or lesser degree, and that comparisons can be made between people. For example, categorizing people into separate groups of ‘sociable’ versus ‘unsociable’ is considered to be meaningless. Instead, it is considered more useful by trait theorists to determine the amount of sociability each person exhibits. Personality theorists regard most traits as forming a normal distribution, so some people will be very high in sociability and others very low, but most people will be somewhere in the middle.

4.1 Cattell’s 16 Trait Dimension
Gordon Allport (1897–1967) made the first comprehensive attempt to develop a framework to describe personality using traits. Allport and Odbert (1936) used Webster’s (1925) New International Dic-tionary to identify terms that describe personality.
This work was developed further by Raymond Cattell (1905– 97), who used a statistical procedure called factor analysis to determine the structure of personality. Factor analysis is a tool for summarizing the relationships among sets of variables by iden-tifying those that co-vary and are different from other groups of variables (see chapter 13). In personality theory, factor analysis can be used to identify which sets of variables most simply and accurately reflect the structure of human personality.
Like Allport, Cattell believed that a useful source of information about the existence of personality traits could be found in language, the importance of a trait being reflected in how many words describe it. Cattell called this the lexical criterion of importance. Building on Allport’s work, Cattell (1943) collated a set of 4500 trait names from various sources and then removed obvious synonyms and metaphorical terms, until he reduced these to 171 key trait names. Cattell collected ratings of these words and factor-analyzed the ratings.
Cattell’s subsequent investigations yielded three types of data, which he categorized as follows: * L-data – life record data, in which personality assessment occurs through interpretation of actual records of behavior throughout a person’s lifetime (e.g. report cards, ratings by friends and military conduct reports); * Q-data – data obtained by questionnaires (e.g. asking people to rate themselves on different characteristics); and * T-data – or objective psychometric test data (e.g. the thematic apperception test).

On the basis of this research, Cattell (1947) developed a model of personality describing 16 trait dimensions. He then developed a questionnaire to measure these traits (Cattell, Eber & Tastuoka, 1977) called the Sixteen Personality Factors Questionnaire (16PF). Here are the 16 trait dimensions used in the 16PF:

Less intelligent--------------------------------------------More intelligent
Stable, ego strength----------------------------Emotionality/neuroticism

4.2 Eysenck’s Supertraits
Hans Eysenck (1916 – 97) was a contemporary of Cattell and also used factor analysis to classify personality traits. But Eysenck (1967) began with a theory of personality which he based on two super traits – extraversion– introversion and neuroticism– stability.
According to this theory, people who are highly extraverted are sociable and outgoing, and crave excite-ment and the company of others. People who are highly introverted are quiet and introspective; they tend to prefer time alone and to be cautious in the way they plan their lives. People who are highly neurotic tend to be anxious, moody and vulnerable, whereas people who are low on neuroticism tend to be stable, calm and even-tempered.
Eysenck viewed the super traits of extraversion and neuroticism as independent, and believed that different personalities arise from differing combinations of the two supertraits. People who are high in both neuroticism and extraversion tend to exhibit quite different traits than someone who is low in both, or a combination of low and high. So people who are high on both extraversion and neuroticism tend to be touchy and aggressive, whereas people who are high on extraversion and low on neuroticism tend to be carefree and sociable. at a number of different levels – super traits, traits, habits and actions. According to this model, many specific actions make up habitual responses, which are represented as trait dimensions, which in turn are part of one supertrait. All levels are important in determining behavior. Like Cattell, Eysenck developed a questionnaire designed to measure his supertraits – the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire, or EPQ (Eysenck & Eysenck, 1975; see table 1.2). Table 1.2 Examples of items from the Eysenck Personality | | | | | Question | Trait | | | | | Are you a talkative person? | Extraversion | | | Do you like going out a lot? | | | | Does your mood often go up and down? | Neuroticism | Are your feelings easily hurt? | | Have you ever taken anything (even a pin or a | Lie scale | button) that belonged to someone else? | | | | As a child, were you ever cheeky to your parents? | | Source: Eysenck and Eysenck (1975). | | |
4.3 The Big Five: Taxonomy or Theory?
Taxonomy is a classification of things according to their natural relationships. We also suggested that taxonomies are an essential starting point for the advance of science, but that they are not theories. Whereas theories generate research, taxonomies merely supply a classification system. Eysenck’s three-factor approach is a good example of how a scientific theory can use taxonomy to generate hundreds of hypotheses. In the following discussion of McCrae and Costa’s Five-Factor Model (FFM), we will see that their work began as an attempt to identify basic personality traits as revealed by factor analysis. This work soon evolved into taxonomy and the Five-Factor Model. After much additional work, this model became a theory, one that can both predict and explain behavior.

4.3.1 Five Factors Found
As late as 1983, McCrae and Costa were arguing for a three-factor model of personality. Not until 1985 did they begin to report work on the five factors of personality. This work culminated in their new five-factor personality inventory: the NEOPI (Costa & McCrae, 1985). The NEO-PI was a revision of an earlier unpublished personality inventory that measured only the first three dimensions; N, E, and O. In the 1985 inventory, the last two dimensions—agreeableness and conscientiousness— were still the least well-developed scales, having no subscales associated with them. Costa and McCrae (1992) did not fully develop the A and C scales until the Revised
NEO-PI appeared in 1992. Throughout the 1980s, McCrae and Costa (1985, 1989) continued their work of factor analyzing most every other major personality inventory, including the
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (Myers, 1962) and the Eysenck Personality Inventory (H. Eysenck & S. Eysenck, 1975, 1993). For instance, in a direct comparison of their model with Eysenck’s, inventory, Costa and McCrae reported that Eysenck’s first two factors (N and E) are completely consistent with their first two factors. Eysenck’s measure of psychoticism mapped onto the low ends of agreeableness and conscientiousness but did not tap into openness (McCrae & Costa, 1985).
At that time, there were two major and related questions in personality research. First, with the dozens of different personality inventories and hundreds of different scales, how was a common language to emerge? Everyone had his or her own somewhat idiosyncratic set of personality variables, making comparisons between studies and cumulative progress difficult. Indeed, as Eysenck (1991a) wrote: Where we have literally hundreds of inventories incorporating thousands of traits, largely overlapping but also containing specific variance, each empirical finding is strictly speaking only relevant to a specific trait. This is not the way to build a unified scientific discipline. (p. 786)
Second, what is the structure of personality? Cattell argued for 16 factors, Eysenck for three, and many others were starting to argue for five. The major accomplishment of the Five-Factor Model (FFM) has been to provide answers to both these questions. Since the late 1980s and early 1990s, most personality psychologists have opted for the Five Factor Model (Digman, 1990; John & Srivastava, 1999). The five factors have been found across a variety of cultures, using a plethora of languages (McCrae & Allik, 2002). In addition, the five factors show some permanence with age; that is, adults—in the absence of catastrophic illness such as Alzheimer’s—tend to maintain the same personality structure as they grow older (McCrae & Costa, 2003). These findings prompted McCrae and Costa (1996) to write that “the facts about personality are beginning to fall into place” (p. 78). Or as McCrae and Oliver John (1992) insisted, the existence of five factors “is an empirical fact.

4.3.2 Description of the Five Factors
McCrae and Costa agreed with Eysenck that personality traits are bipolar and follow a bell-shaped distribution. That is, most people score near the middle of each trait, with only a few people scoring at the extremes. How can people at the extremes be described?
Neuroticism (N) and extraversion (E) are the two strongest and most ubiquitous personality traits, and Costa and McCrae conceptualize in much the same way as Eysenck defined them. People who score high on neuroticism tend to be anxious, temperamental, self-pitying, self-conscious, emotional, and vulnerable to stress related disorders. Those who score low on N are usually calm, even-tempered, self-satisfied, and unemotional.
People who score high on extraversion tend to be affectionate, jovial, talkative, joiners, and fun loving. In contrast, low E scorers are likely to be reserved, quiet, loners, passive, and lacking the ability to express strong emotion (see Table 1.3).

Table 1.3 Costa and McCrae’s Five-Factor Model of Personality Extraversion | Sociable vs. retiring | | | | Fun-loving vs. sober | | | | Affectionate vs. reserved | | Agreeableness | Softhearted vs. ruthless | | | | Trusting vs. suspicious | | | | Helpful vs. uncooperative | | Conscientiousness | Well organized vs. disorganized | | | | Careful vs. careless | | | | Self-disciplined vs. weak willed | | Neuroticism | Worried vs. calm | | | | Insecure vs. secure | | | | Self-pitying vs. self-satisfied | | Openness | | Imaginative vs. down-to-earth | | | | Prefers variety vs. prefers routine | | Independent vs. conforming
(From Costa & McCrae, 1985)

Openness to experience distinguishes people who prefer variety from those who have a need for closure and who gain comfort in their association with familiar people and things. People who consistently seek out different and varied experiences would score high on openness to experience. For example, they enjoy trying new menu items at a restaurant or they like searching for new and exciting restaurants. In contrast, people who are not open to experiences will stick with a familiar item, one they know they will enjoy. People high on openness also tend to question traditional values, whereas those low on openness tend to support traditional values and to preserve a fixed style of living. In summary, people high on openness are generally creative, imaginative, curious, and liberal and have a preference for variety. By contrast, those who score low on openness to experience are typically conventional, down-toearth, conservative, and lacking in curiosity.
The Agreeableness Scale distinguishes soft-hearted people from ruthless ones. People who score in the direction of agreeableness tend to be trusting, generous, yielding, acceptant, and good-natured. Those who score in the other direction are generally suspicious, stingy, unfriendly, irritable, and critical of other people. The fifth factor—conscientiousness—describes people who are ordered, controlled, organized, ambitious, achievement focused, and self-disciplined. In general, people who score high on C are hardworking, conscientious, punctual, and persevering.
In contrast, people who score low on conscientiousness tend to be disorganized, negligent, lazy, and aimless and are likely to give up when a project becomes difficult. Together these dimensions make up the personality traits of the five-factor model, often referred to as the “Big Five” (Goldberg, 1981).

4.3.3 Evolution of the Five-Factor Theory
Originally, the five factors constituted noting more than a taxonomy, a classification of basic personality traits. By the late 1980s, Costa and McCrae became confident that they and other researchers had found a stable structure of personality. That is, they had answered the first central question of personality: What is the structure of personality? This advance was an important milestone for personality traits. The field now had a commonly agreed-on language for describing personality, and it was in five dimensions. Describing personality traits, however, is not the same as explaining them. For explanation, scientists need theory, and that was the next project for McCrae and Costa.
McCrae and Costa (1996) objected to earlier theories as relying too heavily on clinical experiences and on armchair speculation. By the 1980s, the rift between classical theories and modern research-based theories had become quite pronounced. It had become clear to them that “the old theories cannot simply be abandoned: They must be replaced by a new generation of theories that grow out of the conceptual insights of the past and the empirical findings of contemporary research” (p. 53). Indeed, this tension between the old and new was one of the driving forces behind Costa and McCrae’s development of an alternative theory, one that went beyond the five-factor taxonomy.
What then is the alternative? What could a modern trait theory do that was missing from the classic theories? According to McCrae and Costa, first and foremost, a new theory should be able to incorporate the change and growth of the field that has occurred over the last 25 years as well as be grounded in the current empirical principles that have emerged from research.
For 25 years, Costa and McCrae had been at the forefront of contemporary personality research, developing and elaborating on the Five-Factor Model. According to McCrae and Costa (1999), “neither the model itself nor the body of research findings with which it is associated constitutes a theory of personality. A theory organizes findings to tell a coherent story, to bring into focus those issues and phenomena that can and should be explained” (pp. 139–140). Earlier, McCrae and Costa (1996, p. 78) had stated that “the facts about personality are beginning to fall into place. Now is the time to begin to make sense of them.” In other words, it was time to turn the Five-Factor Model (taxonomy) into a Five-Factor Theory (FFT).

4.3.4 Units of the Five-Factor Theory
In the personality theory of McCrae and Costa (1996, 1999, 2003), behavior is predicted by an understanding of three central or core components and three peripheral ones. The three central components include (1) basic tendencies, (2) characteristic adaptations, and (3) self-concept. Core Components of Personality
In Figure 14.8, the central or core components are represented by rectangles, whereas the peripheral components are represented by ellipses. The arrows represent dynamic processes and indicate the direction of causal influence. For example, objective biography (life experiences) is the outcome of characteristic adaptations as well as external influences. Also, biological bases are the sole cause of basic tendencies (personality traits). The personality system can be interpreted either cross-sectional (how the system operates at any given point in time) or longitudinally (how we develop over the lifetime). Moreover, each causal influence is dynamic, meaning that it changes over time.
Basic Tendencies As defined by McCrae and Costa (1996), basic tendencies are one of the central components of personality, along with characteristic adaption’s, self-concept, biological bases, objective biography, and external influences. McCrae and Costa defined basic tendencies as the universal raw material of personality capacities and dispositions that are generally inferred rather than observed. Basic tendencies may be inherited, imprinted by early experience or modified by disease or psychological intervention, but at any given period in an individual’s life, they define the individual’s potential and direction. (pp. 66, 68) In earlier versions of their theory, McCrae and Costa (1996) made it clear that many different elements make up basic tendencies. In addition to the five stable personal traits, these basic tendencies include cognitive abilities, artistic talent, sexual orientation, and the psychological processes underlying acquisition of language. In most of their later publications, McCrae and Costa (1999, 2003) focused almost exclusively on the personality traits: more specifically, the five dimensions (N, E, O, A, and C) described in detail above (see Table 14.1). The essence of basic tendencies is their basis in biology and their stability over time and situation.

Characteristic Adaptations Core components of Five-Factor Theory include the characteristic adaptations, that is, acquired personality structures that develop as people adapt to their environment. The principal difference between basic tendencies and characteristic adaptations is their flexibility. Whereas basic tendencies are quite stable, characteristic adaptations can be influenced by external influences, such as acquired skills, habits, attitudes, and relationships that result from the interaction of individuals with their environment. McCrae and Costa (2003) explained the relationship between basic tendencies and characteristic adaptations, saying that the heart of their theory “is the distinction between basic tendencies and characteristic adaptations, precisely the distinction that we need to explain the stability of personality” (p. 187).
All acquired and specific skills, such as the English language or statistics, are characteristic adaptations. How quickly we learn (talent, intelligence, aptitude) is a basic tendency; what we learn is a characteristic adaptation. Moreover, our dispositions and tendencies are the direct influence on our characteristic adaptations. Characteristic responses are shaped and molded by basic tendencies. What makes them characteristic is their consistency and uniqueness; hence, they reflect the operation of enduring personality traits. Echoing Allport, they are adaptations because they are shaped as a response to what the environment has to offer us at any given moment.
They allow us to fit into or adapt to our environment on an ongoing basis. Understanding how characteristic adaptations and basic tendencies interact is absolutely central to the FFT. Basic tendencies are stable and enduring whereas characteristic adaptations fluctuate, making them subject to change over a person’s lifetime. Characteristic adaptations differ from culture to culture. For instance, the expression of anger in the presence of a superior is much more taboo in Japan than it is in the United States. Distinguishing between stable tendencies and changing adaptations is important because this distinction can explain both the stability of personality and the plasticity of personality. Thus, McCrae and Costa have provided a solution to the problem of stability versus change in personality structure. Basic tendencies are stable, while characteristic adaptations fluctuate.

Self-Concept McCrae and Costa (2003) explain that self-concept is actually a
Characteristic adaptation (see Figure 14.8), but it gets its own box because it is such an important adaptation. McCrae and Costa (1996) wrote that it “consists of knowledge, views, and evaluations of the self, ranging from miscellaneous facts of personal history to the identity that gives a sense of purpose and coherence to life” (p. 70). The beliefs, attitudes, and feelings one has toward oneself are characteristic adaptations in that they influence how one behaves in a given circumstance. For example, believing that one is an intelligent person makes one more willing to put oneself into situations that are intellectually challenging.
Does self-concept need to be accurate? Learning theorists such as Albert Bandura and humanistic theorists such as Carl Rogers or Gordon Allport believe that the conscious views people have of themselves are relatively accurate, with some distortion perhaps. In contrast, psychodynamic theorists would argue that most of the conscious thoughts and feelings people have of them are inherently distorted and the true nature of the self (ego) is largely unconscious. However, McCrae and Costa (2003) include personal myths as part of a person’s self-concept. Peripheral Components
The three peripheral components are (1) biological bases, (2) objective biography, and (3) external influences.

Biological Bases The Five-Factor Theory rests on a single causal influence on personality traits, namely biology. The principal biological mechanisms that influence basic tendencies are genes, hormones, and brain structures. McCrae and Costa have not yet provided specific details about which genes, hormones, and brain structures play what role in their influence on personality. Advances in behavioral genetics and brain imaging have begun and will continue to fill in the details. This positioning of biological bases eliminates any role that the environment may play in the formation of basic tendencies. This should not suggest that the environment has no part in personality formation—merely that it has no direct influence on basic tendencies (see Figure 14.8). The environment does influence some components of personality. This underscores the need to distinguish the main two components of the model—basic tendencies and characteristic adaptations (McCrae & Costa, 1996, p. 187).

Objective Biography The second peripheral component is objective biography, defined as “everything the person does, thinks, or feels across the whole lifespan” (McCrae & Costa, 2003, p. 187). Objective biography emphasizes what has happened in people’s lives (objective) rather than their view or perceptions of their experiences (subjective). Every behavior or response becomes part of the cumulative record. Whereas theorists such as Alfred Adler (style of life) or Dan McAdams (personal narrative) emphasize the subjective interpretations of one’s life-story, McCrae and Costa focus on the objective experiences—the events and experiences one has had over one’s lifetime.

External Influences People constantly find themselves in a particular physical or social situation that has some influence on the personality system. The question of how we respond to the opportunities and demands of the context is what external influences is all about. According to McCrae and Costa (1999, 2003), these responses are a function of two things: (1) characteristic adaptations and (2) their interaction with external influences (note the two arrows going into the objective biography ellipse in Figure 14.8).
McCrae and Costa assume that behavior is a function of the interaction between characteristic adaptations and external influences. As an example, they cite the case of Joan, who is offered tickets to see the opera La Traviata (an external influence). But Joan has a long personal history of detesting opera (a characteristic adaptation) and therefore refuses the offer. To elaborate, Joan may well have a basic tendency toward being closed (rather than open) to new experiences, and she was never around opera as a child or may have simply formed a negative opinion about it based on reputation. Whatever the case, she is more at home with familiar events and with down-to-earth experiences. This background predicts that Joan is likely to respond the way she did to an offer to attend an opera. These decisions to stay away from such experiences reinforce themselves as her distaste for opera grows. This is reflected in the arrow circling back on itself.

4.4 The person–situation debate
Since the development of trait theories in the 1950s and 1960s, personality researchers have been concerned about the relationship between traits and behavior. Mischel (1968) used the phrase ‘personality coefficient’ to highlight the rather modest correlations between traits (as measured by self-report questionnaires) and behavior. A major debate ensued, focusing on whether an individual’s actions are better predicted by the situation or by his/her personal characteristics. The debate was resolved by the concept of interactionism, proposed by Magnusson and Endler (1977) – the idea that personality and the environment interact with each other to produce behavior. Another important notion is that some situations may have more influence over behavior than others. Buss (1989) argued that behavior is determined more by the situation when it is novel, formal and/or public, and more by personality when the situation is informal, familiar and/or private. So in a strong situation like a lecture, for instance, it might be quite hard to draw conclusions about a fellow student’s personality when most people simply sit quietly and take notes. But in a pub or party, people’s behavior is variable enough for personality differences to become apparent.

4.5 Critique of Trait and Factor Theories
Trait and factor methods—especially those of Eysenck and advocates of the Big Five model—provide important taxonomies that organize personality into meaningful classifications. However, taxonomies alone do not explain or predict behavior, two important functions of useful theories. Do these theories go beyond taxonomies and produce important personality research? The trait and factor theories of Eysenck and Costa and McCrae are examples of a strictly empirical approach to personality investigation. A psychometric approach, rather than clinical judgment, is the cornerstone of trait and factor theories. Nevertheless, like other theories, trait and factor theories must be judged by six criteria of a useful theory.
First, do trait and factor theories generate research? On this criterion, the theories of Eysenck and Costa and McCrae must be rated very high. Figure 14.7 shows the comprehensiveness of Eysenck’s personality theory. The middle square embraces the psychometric properties of his theory; that is, psychoticism, extraversion, and neuroticism. This figure also shows that Eysenck’s personality theory is much more than a simple classification. The genetic and biological antecedents of behavior are suggested by the two squares on the left, whereas some of the consequences, or outcomes, of Eysenck’s research are found in the two squares on the right. These consequences are a result of experimental studies on conditioning, sensitivity, vigilance, perception, memory, and reminiscence. Areas of research on social behavior are shown in the box on the far right and includes such topics as sociability, criminality, creativity, psychopathology, and sexual behavior. Eysenck and his colleagues have reported significant amounts of research in these and other fields of research.
The trait theory of McCrae and Costa and other advocates of the Big Five personality structure have also generated large amounts of empirical research. That research has shown that the traits of extroversion, neuroticism, openness to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness are not limited to Western nations, but are found in wide variety of cultures, using myriad translations of the revised NEO-PI. In addition, McCrae and Costa have found that basic personality traits are somewhat flexible up to about age 30, but, after that time, they remain quite stable over the lifespan.
Second, are trait and factor theories falsifiable? On this criterion, trait and factor theories receive a moderate to high rating. Much of Eysenck’s research results— for example, his investigations of personality and disease—has not been replicated by outside researchers. The work of McCrae and Costa lends itself to falsification, even though some of the research coming from non-Western countries suggests that traits other than the Big Five may be needed to explain personality in Asian countries.
Third, trait and factor theories are rated high on their ability to organize knowledge. Anything that is truly known about personality should be reducible to some quantity. Anything that can be quantified can be measured, and anything that can be measured can be factor analyzed. The extracted factors then provide a convenient and accurate description of personality in terms of traits. These traits, in turn, can present a framework for organizing many disparate observations about human personality.
Fourth, a useful theory has the power to guide the actions of practitioners, and on this criterion, trait and factor theories receive mixed reviews. Although these theories provide a comprehensive and structured taxonomy, such a classification is less useful to parents, teachers, and counselors than it is to researchers. Are trait and factor theories internally consistent? Again, the rating must be equivocal. The theories of Eysenck and advocates of the Big Five are each a model of consistency, but the two theories taken together are somewhat inconsistent. Eysenck remained convinced that his Giant Three factors were superior to the Big Five model. This inconsistency presents a problem, especially because factor analysis is a precise mathematical procedure and because factor theories are heavily empirical.
The final criterion of a useful theory is parsimony. Ideally, trait and factor theories should receive an excellent rating on this standard, because factor analysis is predicated on the idea of the fewest explanatory factors possible. In other words, the very purpose of factor analysis is to reduce a large number of variables to as few as possible. This approach is the essence of parsimony.


5.1 Inhibition and Arousal

In 1967 Eysenck developed inhibition theory. He argued that individual differences in extraversion–introversion are strongly determined by heredity and have their origins in the central nervous system. According to this theory, information from the environment is transmitted from the sense organs along neural pathways to the brain, where excitatory and inhibitory cortical processes result in either the facilitation or inhibition of behavioral and cognitive responses, in certain specific ways.
Eysenck maintained that extraverts have relatively strong inhibitory processes and weak excitatory processes. Their ‘strong’ nervous system enables them to tolerate a high degree of stimulation. The brain’s slower and weaker reaction to stimuli creates a hunger or desire for strong sensory stimulation. So extraverts seek excitement from the environment. Introverts, on the other hand, have strong excitory processes and weak inhibitory process. Their nervous systems are ‘weak’, but they have brains that react more quickly and strongly to stimuli. So they can tolerate only relatively small amounts of stimulation.

5.2 Developing the theory
Eysenck and Eysenck (1985) redeveloped inhibition theory to formulate arousal theory, which identifies the physiological systems underlying introversion–extraversion. The differences in the behavior of extraverts and introverts are traced to various parts of the ascending reticular activating system (ARAS) – a network of fibers travelling upwards from the lower brain stem to the thalamus and cortex. Stimulation of the ARAS results in increases in alertness and arousal of the cortex.
Other fibers descending from the lower brain stem influence bodily musculature and the autonomic nervous system. At the same time, fibers descending from the cortex can modulate the activity of the brain stem, increasing or inhibiting the excitability of the ARAS. So the relationship between the ARAS and the cortex is reciprocal.
The high cortical arousability of introverts is supposed to amplify incoming stimulation. According to this framework, very high and very low levels of stimulation are considered to produce negative hedonic tone, which is experienced as negative feelings and negative evaluation of the experience. Positive hedonic tone occurs only at intermediate levels of sensory stimulation. The levels at which negative and positive hedonic tone occur will be different for introverts and extraverts.

5.3 Testing the theory
Using this theoretical formulation psychologists have been able to make predictions about the behavior of introverts and extraverts in experiments ranging from sensory deprivation to students’ study habits. For example, Campbell and Hawley (1982) predicted that introverts would prefer study locations that minimize intense external stimulation (such as study carrels) whereas extraverts would prefer large, open reading areas where socializing is permitted and both auditory and visual stimulation is high. These researchers gave students the EPQ, noted their preferred seating areas in a campus library, and asked them to fill out a study habits questionnaire. Their predictions turned out to be correct. They also found that extraverts took more study breaks, looking and walking around the room, going out for coffee etc.
Davies and Parasuraman (1982) found that extraverts also make more errors than introverts on long vigilance tasks. Eysenck explained this finding by suggesting that extraverts generate reactive inhibition (fatigue) more quickly and at greater levels than introverts when they are performing long tasks.
Despite evidence that appears to support Eysenck’s theory, a comprehensive review by Stelmack (1990) showed that introverts and extraverts show no difference in brain-wave activity when at rest or asleep. It therefore seems likely that extraverts and introverts differ in terms of their sensitivity to stimulation, rather than in base rate levels of cortical activity.

5.3.1 Stress and performance
There has not been much direct investigation of how neuroticism affects performance, but many studies have examined the effect of anxiety – one of the component traits of neuroticism. According to Eysenck, the adverse effects of anxiety on performance are attributable to task-irrelevant processing activities, such as worry. Consistent with this, Eysenck and Eysenck (1985) found that students who report high levels of worry perform less well on tests. And when highly anxious people do perform well, it is at the expense of more effort and distress.

5.3.2 Sensation seeking
The differences between those who prefer bungee-jumping and those who world rather watch a good movie can also be addressed using a biological theory of personality. Zuckerman (1994) conducted research into sensation seeking over a 30-year period, developing a questionnaire to measure the phenomenon and a biological theory to explain it. Zuckerman, Kolin, Price and Zoob (1964) identified four aspects of sensation seeking: * thrill and adventure seeking (risky sport) * experience seeking (desire for novelty) * disinhibition (stimulation through social activity) * boredom susceptibility (low tolerance for repetitive events)
Sensation seekers are more likely to have more sexual partners, use illegal drugs, take part in risky sport, be more complex, original and creative, and have more liberal and nonconforming attitudes. Zuckerman (1994) explained differences in sensation seeking in terms of level of arousal in the catecholamine system. (This system comprises neurons communicating via catecholamine’s, which include epinephrine, or adrenaline, nor epinephrine and dopamine.) According to Zuckerman, those with a low optimal level in this system work to reduce the stimulation in their environment, whereas those with a high optimal level seek to increase it.

Recent work in behavioral genetics has examined the contribution of genetic and environmental factors to human behavior.

5.4.1 Evidence for and against genetic influence
In 1976 Loehlin and Nicholls examined the scores on self-report personality questionnaires of 800 pairs of twins. Nearly all traits showed moderate genetic influence, with monozygotic (identical) twins being much more similar than dizygotic (fraternal, or non-identical) twins. A more extensive study (Loehlin, 1992) of 24,000 twin pairs in many different countries confirmed that monozygotic twins are much more similar than dizygotic twins on the Big Five personality dimensions. Riemann, Angleitner and Strelau (1997) found the same results when twins were rated by their friends on the same factors.
Studies of genetically unrelated family members (parents and their adopted children) show no similarity in personality traits such as extraversion and neuroticism (Loehlin, 1992). This suggests that family environment itself does not contribute to similarities in personality between family members. Interestingly, recent studies have also shown only very slight similarities in personality between adopted children and their biological parents. A study by Plomin, Corley, Caspi, Fulker and DeFries (1998) found some evidence for a genetic basis for sociability, but almost no similarities in emotionality between biological parents and their adopted-away children, or between adoptive parents and their adopted children. Thus both adoption studies and twin studies are consistent with a genetic influence on personality. It is also possible that research findings from twin studies are partly explained by the unique circumstances of being a twin. For example, twins who look similar may be encouraged to act in a similar way, whereas non-identical twins may be encouraged to behave differently.

5.4.2 Genes in the environment
Until researchers began to look at genetic components in personality, psychologists had generally assumed that familial similarities are caused by similar environments. However, it is a mistake to view familial environments as shared between family members. Children growing up in the same family can experience very different lives, and even common family experiences such as death or divorce are experienced differently by different siblings (Dunn & Plomin, 1990). Therefore, it is perhaps not surprising that more recent studies have tended to downplay the role of the ‘shared environment’, because often it is not fully shared between family members. A complex interaction between genes and environment may be the key consideration.
Research in behavioral genetics has also begun to consider the effects of genetics on the environment. Parenting behavior may have a genetic influence, in terms of the parts of the parent’s personality which are influenced by genetic factors. In addition, recent research suggests that parenting behaviour may also be influenced by genetic components of the child’s personality. Plomin, DeFries and Fulker (1988) found that adoptive parents were more responsive to their adopted children whose natural mother had been high on activity and impulsivity. It is therefore possible that children who are genetically more active and impulsive cause their parents to be more responsive to their needs than do other children. Therefore, the relationship between genes and environment may be an even more complex (two-way) interaction than was previously thought.

How do cognitive and social processes affect behavior? And how do different processing strategies result in differing personalities? Mischel helps us to answer these questions. In 1973 he proposed a set of psychological person variables for analyzing individual differences in cognitive terms. These variables are assumed to interact with each other as we interpret the social world and act on it. After a number of developments and refinements, Mischel and Shoda (1995) renamed the variables as cognitive–affective units in the personality system, integrating constructs from research in cognition and social learning.
This model provides a classification system of broad cognitive categories, which describe interacting processes that may lead to personality differences (table 14.2). We will explore social–cognitive theories by taking one category at a time.

Table 1.4 Types of cognitive–affective units in the personality system

Cognitive– affective units in Explanation the personality system

Encodings Units or constructs for categorizing events, people and the self
Expectancies and beliefs Relating to the social world and about outcomes for behaviour; self efficacy
Affects Feelings, emotions and affective responses to stimuli
Goals and values Desirable and aversive affective states and outcomes, life goals, values
Competencies and self- Behaviors and strategies for organizing regulatory plans actions and influencing outcomes, one’s own behaviour and reactions

Source: Mischel and Shoda (1995).
6.1 Triadic Reciprocal Causation
Skinner believed that behavior is a function of the environment; that is, behavior ultimately can be traced to forces outside the person. As environmental contingencies change, behavior changes. But what impetus changes the environment? Skinner acknowledged that human behavior can exercise some measure of counter control over the environment, but he insisted that, in the final analysis, behavior is environmentally determined. Other theorists, such as Gordon Allport and Hans Eysenck emphasized the importance of traits or personal disposition in shaping behavior. In general, these theorists held that personal factors interact with environmental conditions to produce behavior. Albert Bandura (1986, 1999b, 2001, 2002b) adopts quite a different stance.
His social cognitive theory explains psychological functioning in terms of triadic reciprocal causation. This system assumes that human action is a result of an interaction among three variables—environment, behavior, and person. By “person” Bandura means largely, but not exclusively, such cognitive factors as memory, anticipation, planning, and judging. Because people possess and use these cognitive capacities, they have some capacity to select or to restructure their environment: That is, cognition at least partially determines which environmental events people attend to, what value they place on these events, and how they organize these events for future use. Although cognition can have a strong causal effect on both environment and behavior, it is not an autonomous entity, independent of those two variables.
Bandura (1986) criticized those theorists who attribute the cause of human behavior to internal forces such as instincts, drives, needs, or intentions. Cognition itself is determined, being formed by both behavior and environment. Triadic reciprocal causation is represented schematically in Figure 1.3, where B signifies behavior; E is the external environment; and P represents the person, including that person’s gender, social position, size, and physical attractiveness, but especially cognitive factors such as thought, memory, judgment, foresight, and so on. Bandura uses the term “reciprocal” to indicate a triadic interaction of forces, not a similar or opposite counteraction. The three reciprocal factors do not need to be of equal strength or to make equal contributions. The relative potency of the three varies with the individual and with the situation. At times, behavior might be the most powerful, as when a person plays the piano for her own enjoyment. Other times, the environment exerts the greatest influence, as when a boat overturns and every survivor begins thinking and behaving in a very similar fashion. Although behavior and environment can at times be the most powerful contributors to performance, cognition (person) is usually the strongest contributor to performance. Cognition would likely be activated in the examples of the person playing the piano for her own enjoyment and the survivors of an overturned boat. The relative influence of behavior, environment, and person depends on which of the triadic factors is strongest at a particular moment (Bandura, 1997).

FIGURE 1.3 Bandura’s concept of reciprocal causation. Human functioning is a product of the interaction of (B) behavior, (P) person variables, and (E) environment.
6.2 Human Agency
Social cognitive theory takes an agentic view of personality, meaning that humans have the capacity to exercise control over their own lives (2002b). Indeed, human agency is the essence of humanness. Bandura (2001) believes that people are self regulating, proactive, self-reflective, and self-organizing and that they have the power to influence their own actions to produce desired consequences. Human agency does not mean that people possess a homunculus—that is, an autonomous agent—making decisions that are consistent with their view of self. Neither does it mean that people react automatically to external and internal events. Human agency is not a thing but an active process of exploring, manipulating, and influencing the environment in order to attain desired outcomes.

6.2.1 Core Features of Human Agency
Bandura (2001, 2004) discusses four core features of human agency: intentionality, forethought, self-reactiveness, and self-reflectiveness. Intentionality refers to acts a person performs intentionally. An intention includes planning, but it also involves actions. “It is not simply an expectation or prediction of future actions but a proactive commitment to bringing them about” (2001, p. 6). Intentionality does not mean that all of a person’s plans will be brought to fruition. People continually change their plans as they become aware of the consequences of their actions.
People also possess forethought to set goals, to anticipate likely outcomes of their actions, and to select behaviors that will produce desired outcomes and avoid undesirable ones. Forethought enables people to break free from the constraints of their environment. If behavior were completely a function of the environment, then behavior would be more variable and less consistent because we would constantly be reacting to the great diversity of environmental stimuli. “If actions were determined solely by external rewards and punishments, people would behave like weathervanes” (Bandura, 1986, p. 335). But people do not behave like weathervanes, “constantly shifting direction to conform to whatever influence happened to impinge upon them at the moment” (Bandura, 2001, p. 7).
People do more than plan and contemplate future behaviors. They are also capable of self-reactiveness in the process of motivating and regulating their own actions. People not only make choices but they monitor their progress toward fulfilling those choices. Bandura (2001) recognizes that setting goals is not sufficient to attaining desired consequences. Goals must be specific, be within a person’s ability to achieve, and reflect potential accomplishments that are not too far in the future. (We discuss self-regulation more fully in the section titled Self-Regulation.)
Finally, people have self-reflectiveness. They are examiners of their own functioning; they can think about and evaluate their motivations, values, and the meanings of their life goals, and they can think about the adequacy of their own thinking. They can also evaluate the effect that other people’s actions have on them. People’s most crucial self-reflective mechanism is self-efficacy: that is, their beliefs that they are capable of performing actions that will produce a desired effect. Self-Efficacy
How people act in a particular situation depends on the reciprocity of behavioral, environmental, and cognitive conditions, especially those cognitive factors that relate to their beliefs that they can or cannot execute the behavior necessary to produce desired outcomes in any particular situation. Bandura (1997) calls these expectations self-efficacy. According to Bandura (1994), “people’s beliefs in their personal efficacy influence what courses of action they choose to pursue, how much effort they will invest in activities, how long they will persevere in the face of obstacles and failure experiences, and their resiliency following setbacks” (p. 65). Although self-efficacy has a powerful causal influence on people’s actions, it is not the sole determinant. Rather, self-efficacy combines with environment, prior behavior, and other personal variables, especially outcome expectations, to produce behavior. In the triadic reciprocal causal model, which postulates that the environment, behavior, and person have an interactive influence on one another, self-efficacy refers to the P (person) factor. What Is Self-Efficacy?
Bandura (2001) defined self-efficacy as “people’s beliefs in their capability to exercise some measure of control over their own functioning and over environmental events” (p. 10). Bandura contends that “efficacy beliefs are the foundation of human agency” (p. 10). People who believe that they can do something that has the potential to alter environmental events are more likely to act and more likely to be successful than those people with low self-efficacy.
Self-efficacy is not the expectation of our action’s outcomes. Bandura (1986, 1997) distinguished between efficacy expectations and outcome expectations. Efficacy refers to people’s confidence that they have the ability to perform certain behaviors, whereas an outcome expectancy refers to one’s prediction of the likely consequences of that behavior. Outcome must not be confused with successful accomplishment of an act; it refers to the consequences of behavior, not the completion of the act itself. For example, a job applicant may have confidence that she will perform well during a job interview, have the ability to answer any possible questions, remain relaxed and controlled, and exhibit an appropriate level of friendly behavior. Therefore, she has high self-efficacy with regard to the employment interview. However, despite these high efficacy expectations, she may have low outcome expectations. Low outcome expectancy would exist if she believes that she has little chance of being offered a position. This judgment might be due to unpromising environmental conditions, such as high unemployment, depressed economy, or superior competition. In addition, other personal factors such as age, gender, height, weight, or physical health may negatively affect outcome expectancies.
Besides being different from outcome expectancies, self-efficacy must be distinguished from several other concepts. First, efficacy does not refer to the ability to execute basic motor skills such as walking, reaching, or grasping. Also, efficacy does not imply that we can perform designated behaviors without anxiety, stress, or fear; it is merely our judgment, accurate or faulty, about whether or not we can execute the required actions. Finally, judgments of efficacy are not the same as levels of aspiration. Heroin addicts, for example, often aspire to be drug free but may have little confidence in their ability to successfully break the habit (Bandura, 1997).
Self-efficacy is not a global or generalized concept, such as self-esteem or self-confidence. People can have high self-efficacy in one situation and low self-efficacy in another. Self-efficacy varies from situation to situation depending on the competencies required for different activities; the presence or absence of other people; the perceived competence of these other people, especially if they are competitors; the person’s predisposition to attend to failure of performance rather than to success; and the accompanying physiological states, particularly the presence of fatigue, anxiety, apathy, or despondency. High and low efficacies combine with responsive and unresponsive environments to produce four possible predictive variables (Bandura, 1997). When efficacy is high and the environment is responsive, outcomes are most likely to be successful. When low efficacy is combined with a responsive environment, people may become depressed when they observe that others are successful at tasks that seem too difficult for them. When people with high efficacy encounter unresponsive environmental situations, they usually intensify their efforts to change the environment.
They may use protest, social activism, or even force to instigate change; but if all efforts fail, Bandura hypothesizes, either they will give up that course and take on a new one or they will seek a more responsive environment. Finally, when low self efficacy combines with an unresponsive environment, people are likely to feel apathy, resignation, and helplessness. For example, a junior executive with low self efficacy who realizes the difficulties of becoming company president will develop feelings of discouragement, give up, and fail to transfer productive efforts toward a similar but lesser goal. What Contributes to Self-Efficacy?
Personal efficacy is acquired, enhanced, or decreased through any one or combination of four sources: (1) mastery experiences, (2) social modeling, (3) social persuasion, and (4) physical and emotional states (Bandura, 1997). With each method, information about oneself and the environment is cognitively processed and, together with recollections of previous experiences, alters perceived self-efficacy.

Mastery Experiences The most influential sources of self-efficacy are mastery experiences, that is, past performances (Bandura, 1997). In general, successful performance raises efficacy expectancies; failure tends to lower them. This general statement has six corollaries.
First, successful performance raises self-efficacy in proportion to the difficulty of the task. Highly skilled tennis players gain little self-efficacy by defeating clearly inferior opponents, but they gain much by performing well against superior opponents.
Second, tasks successfully accomplished by oneself are more efficacious than those completed with the help of others. In sports, team accomplishments do not increase personal efficacy as much as do individual achievements.
Third, failure is most likely to decrease efficacy when we know that we put forth our best effort. To fail when only half-trying is not as inefficacious as to fall short in spite of our best efforts. Fourth, failure under conditions of high emotional arousal or distress are not as self-debilitating as failure under maximal conditions.
Fifth, failure prior to establishing a sense of mastery is more detrimental to feelings of personal efficacy than later failure.
A sixth and related corollary is that occasional failure has little effect on efficacy, especially for people with a generally high expectancy of success.

Social Modeling A second source of efficacy is social modeling: that is, vicarious experiences provided by other people. Our self-efficacy is raised when we observe the accomplishments of another person of equal competence, but is lowered when we see a peer fail. When the other person is dissimilar to us, social modeling will have little effect on our self-efficacy. An old, sedentary coward watching a young, active, brave circus performer successfully walk a high wire will undoubtedly have little enhancement of efficacy expectations for duplicating the feat.
In general, the effects of social modeling are not as strong as those of personal performance in raising levels of efficacy, but they can have powerful effects where inefficacy is concerned. Watching a swimmer of equal ability fail to negotiate a choppy river will likely dissuade the observer from attempting the same task. The effects of this vicarious experience may even last a lifetime.

Social Persuasion Self-efficacy can also be acquired or weakened through social persuasion (Bandura, 1997). The effects of this source are limited, but under proper conditions, persuasion from others can raise or lower self-efficacy. The first condition is that a person must believe the persuader. Exhortations or criticisms from a credible source have more efficacious power than do those from a no credible person.
Boosting self-efficacy through social persuasion will be effective only if the activity one is being encouraged to try is within one’s repertoire of behavior. No amount of verbal persuasion can alter a person’s efficacy judgment on the ability to run 100 meters in less than 8 seconds. Bandura (1986) hypothesizes that the efficacious power of suggestion is directly related to the perceived status and authority of the persuader. Status and authority, of course, are not identical. For example, a psychotherapist’s suggestion to phobic patients that they can ride in a crowded elevator is more likely to increase self-efficacy than will encouragement from one’s spouse or children. But if that same psychotherapist tells patients that they have the ability to change a faulty light switch, these patients will probably not enhance their self-efficacy for this activity.
Also, social persuasion is most effective when combined with successful performance.
Persuasion may convince someone to attempt an activity, and if performance is successful, both the accomplishment and the subsequent verbal rewards will increase future efficacy.

Physical and Emotional States The final source of efficacy is people’s physiological and emotional states (Bandura, 1997). Strong emotion ordinarily lowers performance; when people experience intense fear, acute anxiety, or high levels of stress, they are likely to have lower efficacy expectancies. An actor in a school play knows his lines during rehearsal but realizes that the fear he feels on opening night may block his recall. Incidentally, for some situations, emotional arousal, if not too intense, is associated with increased performance, so that moderate anxiety felt by that actor on opening night may raise his efficacy expectancies. Most people, when not afraid, have the ability to successfully handle poisonous snakes. They merely have to grasp the snake firmly behind the head; but for many people, the fear that accompanies snake handling is debilitating and greatly lowers their performance expectancy. Psychotherapists have long recognized that a reduction in anxiety or an increase in physical relaxation can facilitate performance.
Arousal information is related to several variables. First, of course, is the level of arousal—ordinarily, the higher the arousal, the lower the self-efficacy. The second variable is the perceived realism of the arousal. If one knows that the fear is realistic, as when driving on an icy mountain road, personal efficacy may be raised. However, when one is cognizant of the absurdity of the phobia—for example, fear of the outdoors—then the emotional arousal tends to lower efficacy. Finally, the nature of the task is an added variable. Emotional arousal may facilitate the successful completion of simple tasks, but it is likely to interfere with performance of complex activities. Although self-efficacy is “the foundation of human agency” (Bandura, 2001, p. 10), it is not the only mode of human agency. People can also exercise control over their lives through proxy and through collective efficacy. Collective Efficacy
The third mode of human agency is collective efficacy. Bandura (2000) defined collective efficacy as “people’s shared beliefs in their collective power to produce desired results” (p. 75). In other words, collective efficacy is the confidence people have that their combined efforts will bring about group accomplishments. Bandura (2000) suggested two techniques for measuring collective efficacy.
The first is to combine individual members’ evaluations of their personal capabilities to enact behaviors that benefit the group. For example, actors in a play would have high collective efficacy if all had confidence in their personal ability to adequately perform their roles. The second approach proposed by Bandura is to measure the confidence each person has in the group’s ability to bring about a desired outcome. For example, baseball players may have little confidence in each of their teammates but possess high confidence that their team will perform quite well. These two slightly different approaches to collective efficacy call for separate measuring techniques. Collective efficacy does not spring from a collective “mind” but rather from the personal efficacy of many individuals working together. A group’s collective efficacy, however, depends not only on the knowledge and skills of its individual members but also on their beliefs that they can work together in a coordinated and interactive fashion (Bandura, 2000). People may have high self-efficacy but low collective efficacy. For example, a woman may have high personal efficacy that she can pursue a healthy lifestyle, but she may have low collective efficacy that she can reduce environmental pollution, hazardous working conditions, or the threat of infectious disease.
Bandura (1998b) pointed out that different cultures have different levels of collective efficacy and work more productively under different systems. For example, people in the United States, an individualistic culture, feel greater self-efficacy and work best under an individually oriented system, whereas people in China, a collectivist culture, feel greater collective efficacy and work best under a group-oriented system. Bandura (1997, 1998b, 2001) lists several factors that can undermine collective efficacy.
First, humans live in a transnational world; what happens in one part of the globe can affect people in other countries, giving them a sense of helplessness. Destruction of the Amazon rain forests, international trade policies, or depletion of the ozone layers, for example, can affect the lives of people everywhere and undermine their confidence to shape a better world for themselves.
Second, recent technology that people neither understand nor believe that they can control may lower their sense of collective efficacy. In past years, many motorists, for example, had confidence in their ability to keep their car in running condition. With the advent of computerized controls in modern automobiles, many moderately skilled mechanics not only have lost personal efficacy for repairing their vehicle but also have low collective efficacy for reversing the trend toward more and more complicated automobiles.
A third condition undermining collective efficacy is the complex social machinery, with layers of bureaucracy that prevent social change. People who attempt to change bureaucratic structures are often discouraged by failure or by the long lapse of time between their actions and any noticeable change. Having become discouraged, many people, “rather than developing the means for shaping their own future, grudgingly relinquish control to technical specialists and to public officials” (Bandura, 1995, p. 37).
Fourth, the tremendous scope and magnitude of human problems can undermine collective efficacy. Wars, famine, overpopulation, crime, and natural disasters are but a few of the global problems that can leave people with a sense of powerlessness. Despite these huge transnational problems, Bandura believes that positive changes are possible if people will persevere with their collective efforts and not become discouraged. Taking a worldwide view, Bandura (2000) concluded that “as globalization reaches ever deeper into people’s lives, a resilient sense of shared efficacy becomes critical to furthering their common interests” (p. 78). Self-Regulation
When people have high levels of self-efficacy, are confident in their reliance on proxies, and possess solid collective efficacy, they will have considerable capacity to regulate their own behavior. Bandura (1994) believes that people use both reactive and proactive strategies for self-regulation. That is, they reactively attempt to reduce the discrepancies between their accomplishments and their goal; but after they close those discrepancies, they proactively set newer and higher goals for themselves.
“People motivate and guide their actions through proactive control by setting themselves valued goals that create a state of disequilibrium and then mobilizing their abilities and effort based on anticipatory estimation of what is required to reach the goals”. The notion that people seek a state of disequilibrium is similar to Gordon Allport’s belief that people are motivated at least as much to create tension as to reduce it. What processes contribute to this self-regulation? First, people possess limited ability to manipulate the external factors that feed into the reciprocal interactive paradigm. Second, people are capable of monitoring their own behavior and evaluating it in terms of both proximate and distant goals. Behavior, then, stems from a reciprocal influence of both external and internal factors. External Factors in Self-Regulation
External factors affect self-regulation in at least two ways. First, they provide us with a standard for evaluating our own behavior. Standards do not stem solely from internal forces. Environmental factors, interacting with personal influences, shape individual standards for evaluation. By precept, we learn from parents and teachers the value of honest and friendly behavior; by direct experience, we learn to place more value on being warm and dry than on being cold and wet; and through observing others, we evolve a multitude of standards for evaluating self-performance. In each of these examples, personal factors affect which standards we will learn, but environmental forces also play a role.
Second, external factors influence self-regulation by providing the means for reinforcement. Intrinsic rewards are not always sufficient; we also need incentives that emanate from external factors. An artist, for example, may require more reinforcement than self-satisfaction to complete a large mural. Environmental support in the form of a monetary retainer or praise and encouragement from others may also be necessary. The incentives to complete a lengthy project usually come from the environment and often take the form of small rewards contingent upon the completion of sub goals. The artist may enjoy a cup of coffee after having painted the hand of one of the subjects or break for lunch after finishing another small section of the mural. However, self-reward for inadequate performance is likely to result in environmental sanctions. Friends may criticize or mock the artist’s work, patrons may withdraw financial support, or the artist may be self-critical. When performance does not meet self-standards, we tend to withhold rewards from ourselves. Internal Factors in Self-Regulation
External factors interact with internal or personal factors in self-regulation. Bandura (1986, 1996) recognizes three internal requirements in the ongoing exercise of self influence: (1) self-observation, (2) judgmental processes, and (3) self-reaction. Self-Observation
The first internal factor in self-regulation is self-observation of performance. We must be able to monitor our own performance, even though the attention we give to it need not be complete or even accurate. We attend selectively to some aspects of our behavior and ignore others altogether. What we observe depends on interests and other preexisting self-conceptions. In achievement situations, such as painting pictures, playing games, or taking examinations, we pay attention to the quality, quantity, speed, or originality of our work. In interpersonal situations, such as meeting new acquaintances or reporting on events, we monitor the sociability or morality of our conduct. Judgmental Process
Self-observation alone does not provide a sufficient basis for regulating behavior. We must also evaluate our performance. This second process, judgmental process, helps us regulate our behavior through the process of cognitive mediation. We are capable not only of reflective self-awareness but also of judging the worth of our actions on the basis of goals we have set for ourselves. More specifically, the judgmental process depends on personal standards, referential performances, valuation of activity, and performance attribution.
Personal standards allow us to evaluate our performances without comparing them to the conduct of others. To a profoundly handicapped 10-year-old child, the act of tying his shoelaces may be highly prized. He need not devalue his accomplishment simply because other children can perform this same act at a younger age. Personal standards, however, are a limited source of evaluation. For most of our activities, we evaluate our performances by comparing them to a standard of reference. Students compare their test scores to those of their classmates, and tennis players judge their personal skills against those of other players. In addition, we use our own previous levels of accomplishment as a reference for evaluating present performance: “Has my singing voice improved over the years?” “Is my teaching ability better now than ever?” Also, we may judge our performance by comparing it to that of a single individual—a brother, sister, parent, or even a hated rival—or we can compare it to a standard norm such as par in golf or a perfect score in bowling.
Besides personal and reference standards, the judgmental process is also dependent on the overall value we place on an activity. If we place minor value on our ability to wash dishes or dust furniture, then we will spend little time or effort in trying to improve these abilities. On the other hand, if we place high value on getting ahead in the business world or attaining a professional or graduate degree, then we will expend much effort to achieve success in these areas.
Finally, self-regulation also depends on how we judge the causes of our behavior, that is, performance attribution. If we believe that our success is due to our own efforts, we will take pride in our accomplishments and tend to work harder to attain our goals. However, if we attribute our performance to external factors, we will not derive as much self-satisfaction and will probably not put forth strenuous effort to attain our goals. Conversely, if we believe that we are responsible for our own failures or inadequate performance, we will work more readily toward self-regulation than if we are convinced that our shortcomings and our fears are due to factors beyond our control (Bandura, 1986, 1996). Self-Reaction
The third and final internal factor in self-regulation is self-reaction. People respond positively or negatively to their behaviors depending on how these behaviors measure up to their personal standards. That is, people create incentives for their own actions through self-reinforcement or self-punishment. For example, a diligent student who has completed a reading assignment may reward herself by watching her favorite television program.
Self-reinforcement does not rest on the fact that it immediately follows a response: Rather, it relies in large part on the use of our cognitive ability to mediate the consequences of behavior. People set standards for performance that, when met, tend to regulate behavior by such self-produced rewards as pride and selfsatisfaction. When people fail to meet their standards, their behavior is followed by self-dissatisfaction or self-criticism.
This concept of self-mediated consequences is a sharp contrast to Skinner’s notion that the consequences of behavior are environmentally determined. Bandura hypothesizes that people work to attain rewards and to avoid punishments according to self-erected standards. Even when rewards are tangible, they are often accompanied by self-mediated intangible incentives such as a sense of accomplishment. The Nobel Prize, for example, carries a substantial cash award, but its greater value to most recipients must be the feeling of pride or self-satisfaction in performing the tasks that led to the award. Self-Regulation Through Moral Agency
People also regulate their actions through moral standards of conduct. Bandura (1999a) sees moral agency as having two aspects: (1) doing no harm to people and (2) proactively helping people. Our self-regulative mechanisms, however, do not affect other people until we act on them. We have no automatic internal controlling agent such as a conscience or superego that invariably directs our behavior toward morally consistent values. Bandura (2002a) insists that moral precepts predict moral behavior only when those precepts are converted to action. In other words, self regulatory influences are not automatic but operate only if they are activated, a concept Bandura calls selective activation.
How can people with strong moral beliefs concerning the worth and dignity of all humankind behave in an inhumane manner to other humans? Bandura’s (1994) answer is that “people do not ordinarily engage in reprehensible conduct until they have justified to themselves the morality of their actions” (p. 72). By justifying the morality of their actions, they can separate or disengage themselves from the consequences of their behavior, a concept Bandura calls disengagement of internal control.
Disengagement techniques allow people, individually or working in concert with others, to engage in inhumane behaviors while retaining their moral standards (Bandura, 2002a). For example, politicians frequently convince their constituents of the morality of war. Thus, wars are fought against “evil” people, people who deserve to be defeated or even annihilated.
Selective activation and disengagement of internal control allow people with the same moral standards to behave quite differently, just as they permit the same person to behave differently in different situations. Figure 16.2 illustrates the various mechanisms through which self-control is disengaged or selectively activated. First, people can redefine or reconstruct the nature of the behavior itself by such techniques as morally justifying it, making advantageous comparisons, or euphemistically labeling their actions. Second, they can minimize, ignore, or distort the detrimental consequences of their behavior. Third, they can blame or dehumanize the victim.
Fourth, they can displace or diffuse responsibility for their behavior by obscuring the relationship between their actions and the effects of those actions.

6.2.2 Proxy Agency
Proxy involves indirect control over those social conditions that affect everyday living. Bandura (2001) noted that “no one has the time, energy, and resources to master every realm of everyday life. Successful functioning necessarily involves a blend of reliance on proxy agency in some areas of functioning” (p. 13). In modern American society, people would be nearly helpless if they relied solely on personal accomplishments to regulate their lives. Most people do not have the personal capability to repair an air conditioner, a camera, or an automobile. Through proxy agency, however, they can accomplish their goal by relying on other people to repair these objects. People attempt to change their daily lives by contacting their congressional representative or another potentially influential person; they acquire mentors to help them learn useful skills; they hire a young neighbor to mow their grass; they rely on international news services to learn of recent events; they retain lawyers to solve legal problems; and so on.
Proxy, however, has a downside. By relying too much on the competence and power of others, people may weaken their sense of personal and collective efficacy. One spouse may become dependent on the other to care for the household; late adolescent or early adult-age children may expect parents to take care of them; and citizens may learn to rely on their government to provide for the necessities of life.
Minimizing, ignoring, or misconstruing the consequences
Moral justification
Palliative comparison
Euphemistic labeling
Attribution of blame

Reprehensible conduct Detrimental effects Victim
Displacement of responsibility Diffusion of responsibility

FIGURE 1.4 Mechanisms through which internal control is selectively activated or disengaged from reprehensible conduct at different points in the regulatory process.
6.3 Redefine the Behavior
With redefinition of behavior, people justify otherwise reprehensible actions by a cognitive restructuring that allows them to minimize or escape responsibility. They can relieve themselves of responsibility for their behavior by at least three techniques (see upper-left box in Figure 1.4).
The first is moral justification, in which otherwise culpable behavior is made to seem defensible or even noble. Bandura (1986) cited the example of World War I hero Sergeant Alvin York who, as a conscientious objector, believed that killing was morally wrong. After his battalion commander quoted from the Bible the conditions under which it was morally justified to kill and after a long prayer vigil, York became convinced that killing enemy soldiers was morally defensible. Following his redefining killing, York proceeded to kill and capture more than 100 German soldiers and, as a result, became one of the greatest war heroes in American history.
A second method of reducing responsibility through redefining wrongful behavior is to make advantageous or palliative comparisons between that behavior and the even greater atrocities committed by others. The child who vandalizes a school building uses the excuse that others broke even more windows.
A third technique in redefining behavior is the use of euphemistic labels. Politicians who have pledged not to raise taxes speak of “revenue enhancement” rather than taxes; some Nazi leaders called the murder of millions of Jews the “purification of Europe” or “the final solution.”

6.4 Disregard or Distort the Consequences of Behavior
A second method of avoiding responsibility involves distorting or obscuring the relationship between the behavior and its detrimental consequences (see upper-center box of Figure 16.2). Bandura (1986, 1999a) recognized at least three techniques of distorting or obscuring the detrimental consequences of one’s actions. First, people can minimize the consequences of their behavior. For example, a driver runs a red light and strikes a pedestrian. As the injured party lies bleeding and unconscious on the pavement, the driver says, “She’s not really hurt badly. She’s going to be okay.”
Second, people can disregard or ignore the consequences of their actions, as when they do not see firsthand the harmful effects of their behavior. In wartime, heads of state and army generals seldom view the total destruction and death resulting from their decisions.
Finally, people can distort or misconstrue the consequences of their actions, as when a parent beats a child badly enough to cause serious bruises but explains that the child needs discipline in order to mature properly.

6.5 Dehumanize or Blame the Victims
Third, people can obscure responsibility for their actions by either dehumanizing their victims or attributing blame to them (see upper-right box in Figure 16.2). In time of war, people often see the enemy as subhuman, so they need not feel guilty for killing enemy soldiers. At various times in U.S. history, Jews, African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, homosexuals, and street people have become dehumanized victims. Otherwise kind, considerate, and gentle people have perpetrated acts of violence, insult, or other forms of mistreatment against these groups in order to avoid responsibility for their own behavior.
When victims are not dehumanized, they are sometimes blamed for the perpetrator’s culpable conduct. A rapist may blame his victim for his crime, citing her provocative dress or behavior.

6.6 Displace or Diffuse Responsibility
The fourth method of dissociating actions from their consequences is to displace or diffuse responsibility (see lower box in Figure 16.2). With displacement, people minimize the consequences of their actions by placing responsibility on an outside source. Examples include an employee who claims that her boss is responsible for her inefficiency and a college student who blames his professor for low grades. A related procedure is to diffuse responsibility—to spread it so thin that no one person is responsible. A civil servant may diffuse responsibility for her actions throughout the entire bureaucracy with such comments as “That’s the way things are done around here” or “That’s just policy.”

6.7 Dysfunctional Behavior
Bandura’s concept of triadic reciprocal causation assumes that behavior is learned as a result of a mutual interaction of (1) the person, including cognition and neurophysiologic processes; (2) the environment, including interpersonal relations and socioeconomic conditions; and (3) behavioral factors, including previous experiences with reinforcement. Dysfunctional behavior is no exception. Bandura’s concept of dysfunctional behavior lends itself most readily to depressive reactions, phobias, and aggressive behaviors.

6.7.1 Depression
High personal standards and goals can lead to achievement and self-satisfaction. However, when people set their goals too high, they are likely to fail. Failure frequently leads to depression, and depressed people often undervalue their own accomplishments. The result is chronic misery, feelings of worthlessness, lack of purposefulness, and pervasive depression. Bandura (1986, 1997) believes that dysfunctional depression can occur in any of the three self-regulatory subfunctions: (1) self-observation, (2) judgmental processes, and (3) self-reactions.
First, during self-observation, people can misjudge their own performance or distort their memory of past accomplishments. Depressed people tend to exaggerate their past mistakes and minimize their prior accomplishments, a tendency that perpetuates their depression.
Second, depressed people are likely to make faulty judgments. They set their standards unrealistically high so that any personal accomplishment will be judged as a failure. Even when they achieve success in the eyes of others, they continue to berate their own performance. Depression is especially likely when people set goals and personal standards much higher than their perceived efficacy to attain them. Finally, the self-reactions of depressed individuals are quite different from those of no depressed persons. Depressed people not only judge themselves harshly, but they are also inclined to treat themselves badly for their shortcomings.

6.7.2 Phobias
Phobias are fears that are strong enough and pervasive enough to have severe debilitating effects on one’s daily life. For example, snake phobias prevent people from holding a variety of jobs and from enjoying many kinds of recreational activities. Phobias and fears are learned by direct contact, inappropriate generalization, and especially by observational experiences (Bandura, 1986). They are difficult to extinguish because the phobic person simply avoids the threatening object. Unless the fearsome object is somehow encountered, the phobia will endure indefinitely. Bandura (1986) credits television and other news media for generating many of our fears. Well-publicized rapes, armed robberies, or murders can terrorize a community, causing people to live more confined lives behind locked doors.
Most people have never been raped, robbed, or intentionally injured; yet many live in fear of being criminally assaulted. Violent criminal acts that seem random and unpredictable are most likely to instigate phobic reactions.
Once established, phobias are maintained by consequent determinants: that is, the negative reinforcement the phobic person receives for avoiding the fear-producing situation. For example, if people expect to receive aversive experiences (being mugged) while walking through the city park, they will reduce their feeling of threat by not entering the park or even going near it. In this example, dysfunctional (avoidance) behavior is produced and maintained by the mutual interaction of people’s expectancies (belief that they will be mugged), the external environment (the city park), and behavioral factors (their prior experiences with fear).

6.7.3 Aggression
Aggressive behaviors, when carried to extremes, can also be dysfunctional. Bandura (1986) contended that aggressive behavior is acquired through observation of others, direct experiences with positive and negative reinforcements, training, or instruction, and bizarre beliefs. Once established, people continue to aggress for at least five reasons: (1) They enjoy inflicting injury on the victim (positive reinforcement); (2) they avoid or counter the aversive consequences of aggression by others (negative reinforcement); (3) they receive injury or harm for not behaving aggressively (punishment); (4) they live up to their personal standards of conduct by their aggressive behavior (self reinforcement); and (5) they observe others receiving rewards for aggressive acts or punishment for nonaggressive behavior.
Bandura believes that aggressive actions ordinarily lead to further aggression. This belief is based on the now classic study of Bandura, Dorrie Ross, and Sheila Ross (1963), which found that children who observed others behaving aggressively displayed more aggression than a control group of children who did not view aggressive acts. In this study, the experimenters divided Stanford University nursery school boys and girls into three matched experimental groups and one control group.
Children in the first experimental group observed a live model behaving with both verbal and physical aggression toward a number of toys, including a large inflated Bobo doll; the second experimental group observed a film showing the same model behaving in an identical manner; the third experimental group saw a fantasy film in which a model, dressed as a black cat, behaved equally aggressively against the Bobo doll. Children in the control group were matched with those in the experimental groups on previous ratings of aggression, but they were not subjected to an aggressive model.
After children in the three experimental groups observed a model scolding, kicking, punching, and hitting the Bobo doll with a mallet, they proceeded into another room where they were mildly frustrated. Immediately following this frustration, each child went into the experimental room, which contained some toys (such as a smaller version of the Bobo doll) that could be played with aggressively. In addition, some nonaggressive toys (such as a tea set and coloring materials) were present. Observers watched the children’s aggressive or nonaggressive response to the toys through a one-way mirror. As hypothesized, children exposed to an aggressive model displayed more aggressive responses than those who had not been exposed. But contrary to expectations, the researchers found no differences in the amount of total aggression shown by children in the three experimental groups. Children who had observed the cartoon character were at least as aggressive as those exposed to a live model or to a filmed model.
In general, children in each experimental group exhibited about twice as much aggressive behavior as did those in the control group. Children scolded, kicked, punched, and hit the doll with a mallet in close imitation to the behavior that had been modeled. This study, now more than 40 years old, was conducted at a time when people still debated the effects of television violence on children and adults. Some people argued that viewing aggressive behaviors on television would have a cathartic effect on children: That is, children who experienced aggression vicariously would have little motivation to act in an aggressive manner. The study by Bandura, Ross, and Ross (1963) offered some of the earliest experimental evidence that TV violence does not curb aggression; rather, it produces additional aggressive behaviors.

Distal Proximal
Symptoms of hopelessness depression including
1. Sad affect.
2. Lack of energy.
3. Apathy.
4. Sleep disturbance.
5. Mood exacerbated
Negative cognitions.
6. Suicide.

Stable, global attribution for negative life event and attachment of high importance to event


Inferred negative consequences of negative life event


Inferred negative characteristics about the self given the negative life event

If stable, global attribution is internal
Situational cues
(e.g. own past behaviour, others’ behaviour) Hopelessness

Negative life events (the stress)

Depressogenic inferential styles about cause, consequences and self
(i.e. increased vulnerability) ???
Other contributory causal pathways to hopelessness
(e.g. lack of social support)

Figure 1.5The hopelessness model of depression.

6.8 Therapy
According to Bandura, deviant behaviors are initiated on the basis of social cognitive learning principles, and they are maintained because, in some ways, they continue to serve a purpose. Therapeutic change, therefore, is difficult because it involves eliminating behaviors that are satisfying to the person. Smoking, overeating, and drinking alcoholic beverages, for example, generally have positive effects initially, and their long-range aversive consequences are usually not sufficient to produce avoidance behavior.
The ultimate goal of social cognitive therapy is self-regulation (Bandura, 1986). To achieve this end, the therapist introduces strategies designed to induce specific behavioral changes, to generalize those changes to other situations, and to maintain those changes by preventing relapse. The first step in successful therapy is to instigate some change in behavior. For example, if a therapist is able to extinguish fear of height in a previously acrophobic person, then change has been induced and that person will have no fear of climbing a 20-foot ladder. A more important level of therapy is to generalize specific changes. For example, the acrophobic person not only will be able to ascend a ladder but also will be able to ride in airplanes or look out windows of tall buildings. Some therapies induce change and facilitate generalization, but in time, the therapeutic effects are lost and the person reacquires the dysfunctional behavior. This relapse is particularly likely when people are extinguishing maladaptive habits such as smoking and overeating. The most effective therapy reaches the third level of accomplishment, which is maintenance of newly acquired functional behaviors. Bandura (1986) has suggested several basic treatment approaches. The first includes overt or vicarious modeling. People who observe live or filmed models performing threatening activities often feel less fear and anxiety and are then able to perform those same activities.
In a second treatment mode, covert or cognitive modeling, the therapist trains patients to visualize models performing fearsome behaviors. Overt and covert modeling strategies are most effective, however, when combined with performance oriented approaches.
A third procedure, called enactive mastery, requires patients to perform those behaviors that previously produced incapacitating fears. Enactment, however, is not ordinarily the first step in treatment. Patients typically begin by observing models or by having their emotional arousal lessened through systematic desensitization, which involves the extinction of anxiety or fear through self-induced or therapist induced relaxation. With systematic desensitization, the therapist and patient work together to place fearsome situations on a hierarchy from least to most threatening (Wolpe, 1973). Patients, while relaxed, enact the least threatening behavior and then gradually move through the hierarchy until they can perform the most threatening activity, all the while remaining at a low state of emotional arousal. Bandura has demonstrated that each of these strategies can be effective and that they are most powerful when used in combination with one another. Bandura (1989) believes that the reason for their effectiveness can be traced to a common mechanism found in each of these approaches, namely, cognitive mediation. When people use cognition to increase self-efficacy—that is, when they become convinced that they can perform difficult tasks—then, in fact, they become able to cope with previously intimidating situations.

6.9 Critique of Bandura
Albert Bandura has evolved his social cognitive theory by a careful balance of the two principal components of theory building—innovative speculation and accurate observation. His theoretical speculations have seldom outdistanced his data but have been carefully advanced, only one step in front of observations. This scientifically sound procedure increases the likelihood that his hypotheses will yield positive results and that his theory will generate additional testable hypotheses.
The usefulness of Bandura’s personality theory, like that of other theories, rests on its ability to generate research, to offer itself to falsification, and to organize knowledge. In addition, it must serve as a practical guide to action and be internally consistent and parsimonious. How does Bandura’s theory rate on these six criteria? Bandura’s theory has generated several thousand research studies and thus receives a very high rating on its capacity to generate research. Bandura and his student colleagues have conducted much of the work, but other researchers, too, have been attracted to the theory. Bandura may be the most meticulous writer of all personality theorists. His carefully constructed formulations lend themselves to the formation of numerous testable hypotheses.
On the standard of falsifiability, we rate Bandura’s theory high. Self-efficacy theory suggests that “people’s beliefs in their personal efficacy influence what courses of action they choose to pursue, how much effort they will invest in activities, how long they will persevere in the face of obstacles and failure experiences, and their resiliency following setbacks” (Bandura, 1994, p. 65). This statement suggests several areas of possible research that could lead to falsification of self-efficacy theory. On its ability to organize knowledge, Bandura’s theory receives a high rating.
Many findings from psychology research can be organized by social cognitive theory. The triadic reciprocal causation model is a comprehensive concept that offers a viable explanation for the acquisition of most observable behaviors. The inclusion of three variables in this paradigm gives Bandura’s theory more flexibility to organize and explain behavior than does Skinner’s radical behaviorism, which relies heavily on environmental variables. How practical is Bandura’s social cognitive theory? To the therapist, teacher, parent, or anyone interested in the acquisition and maintenance of new behaviors, self-efficacy theory provides useful and specific guidelines. In addition to presenting techniques for enhancing personal and collective efficacy and for efficient use of proxies, Bandura’s theory suggests ways in which observational learning and modeling can be used to acquire behaviors. Is the theory internally consistent? Because Bandura’s social cognitive theory is not highly speculative, it has outstanding internal consistency. Bandura is not afraid to speculate, but he never ventures far beyond the empirical data available to him. The result is a carefully couched, rigorously written, and internally consistent theory.
The final criterion of a useful theory is parsimony. Again, Bandura’s theory meets high standards. The theory is simple, straightforward, and unencumbered by hypothetical or fanciful explanations.

The personality theory of Abraham Maslow has variously been called humanistic theory, transpersonal theory, the third force in psychology, the fourth force in personality, needs theory, and self-actualization theory. However, Maslow (1970) referred to it as a holistic-dynamic theory because it assumes that the whole person is constantly being motivated by one need or another and that people have the potential to grow toward psychological health, that is, self-actualization. To attain selfactualization, people must satisfy lower level needs such as hunger, safety, love, and esteem. Only after they are relatively satisfied in each of these needs can they reach self-actualization.
The theories of Maslow, Gordon Allport, Carl Rogers, Rollo May, and others are sometimes thought of as the third force in psychology. (The first force was psychoanalysis and its modifications; the second was behaviorism and its various forms). Like these other theorists, Maslow accepted some of the tenets of psychoanalysis and behaviorism. As a graduate student, he had studied Freud’s Interpretation of Dreams (Freud, 1900/1953) and became keenly interested in psychoanalysis. In addition, his graduate-level research with primates was greatly influenced by the work of John B. Watson (Watson, 1925).
In his mature theory, however, Maslow criticized both psychoanalysis and behaviorism for their limited views of humanity and their inadequate understanding of the psychologically healthy person. Maslow believed that humans have a higher nature than either psychoanalysis or behaviorism would suggest; and he spent the latter years of his life trying to discoverthe nature of psychologically healthy individuals.

7.1 Maslow’s View of Motivation
Maslow’s theory of personality rests on several basic assumptions regarding motivation. First, Maslow (1970) adopted a holistic approach to motivation: That is, the whole person, not any single part or function, is motivated.
Second, motivation is usually complex, meaning that a person’s behavior may spring from several separate motives. For example, the desire for sexual union may be motivated not only by a genital need but also by needs for dominance, companionship, love, and self-esteem. Moreover, the motivation for a behavior may be unconscious or unknown to the person. For example, the motivation for a college student to make a high grade may mask the need for dominance or power. Maslow’s acceptance of the importance of unconscious motivation represents one important way in which he differed from Gordon Allport. Whereas Allport might say that a person plays golf just for the fun of it, Maslow would look beneath the surface for underlying and often complex reasons for playing golf.
A third assumption is that people are continually motivated by one need or another. When one need is satisfied, it ordinarily loses its motivational power and is then replaced by another need. For example, as long as people’s hunger needs are frustrated, they will strive for food; but when they do have enough to eat, they move on to other needs such as safety, friendship, and self-worth.
Another assumption is that all people everywhere are motivated by the same basic needs. The manner in which people in different cultures obtain food, build shelters, express friendship, and so forth may vary widely, but the fundamental needs for food, safety, and friendship are common to the entire species.
A final assumption concerning motivation is that needs can be arranged on a hierarchy (Maslow, 1943, 1970).

7.1.1 Hierarchy of Needs
FIGURE 1.6 Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs concept assumes that lower level needs must be satisfied or at least relatively satisfied before higher level needs become motivators.
7.1.2 Conative Needs
The five needs composing this hierarchy are conative needs, meaning that they have a striving or motivational character. These needs, which Maslow often referred to as basic needs, can be arranged on a hierarchy or staircase, with each ascending step representing a higher need but one less basic to survival (see Figure 10.1). Lower level needs have prepotency over higher level needs; that is, they must be satisfied or mostly satisfied before higher level needs become activated. For example, anyone motivated by esteem or self-actualization must have previously satisfied needs for food and safety. Hunger and safety, therefore, have prepotency over both esteem and
Self-actualization. Maslow (1970) listed the following needs in order of their prepotency: physiological, safety, love and belongingness, esteem, and self-actualization. Physiological Needs
The most basic needs of any person are physiological needs, including food, water, oxygen, maintenance of body temperature, and so on. Physiological needs are the most prepotent of all. Perpetually hungry people are motivated to eat—not to make friends or gain self-esteem. They do not see beyond food, and as long as this need remains unsatisfied, their primary motivation is to obtain something to eat. In affluent societies, most people satisfy their hunger needs as a matter of course. They usually have enough to eat, so when they say they are hungry, they are really speaking of appetites, not hunger. A truly hungry person will not be overly particular about taste, smell, temperature, or texture of the food.
Maslow (1970) said: “It is quite true that man lives by bread alone—when there is no bread” (p. 38). When people do not have their physiological needs satisfied, they live primarily for those needs and strive constantly to satisfy them. Starving people become preoccupied with food and are willing to do nearly anything to obtain it (Keys, Brozek, Henschel, Mickelsen, & Taylor, 1950). Physiological needs differ from other needs in at least two important respects.
First, they are the only needs that can be completely satisfied or even overly satisfied. People can get enough to eat so that food completely loses its motivational power. For someone who has just finished a large meal, the thought of more food can evenhave a nauseating effect. A second characteristic peculiar to physiological needs is their recurring nature. After people have eaten, they will eventually become hungry again; they constantly need to replenish their food and water supply; and one breath of air must be followed by another. Other level needs, however, do not constantly recur. For example, people who have at least partially satisfied their love and esteem needs will remain confident that they can continue to satisfy their love and esteem needs. Safety Needs
When people have partially satisfied their physiological needs, they become motivated by safety needs, including physical security, stability, dependency, protection, and freedom from threatening forces such as war, terrorism, illness, fear, anxiety, danger, chaos, and natural disasters. The needs for law, order, and structure are also safety needs (Maslow, 1970). Safety needs differ from physiological needs in that they cannot be overly satiated; people can never be completely protected from meteorites, fires, floods, or the dangerous acts of others.
In societies not at war, most healthy adults satisfy their safety needs most of the time, thus making these needs relatively unimportant. Children, however, are more often motivated by safety needs because they live with such threats as darkness, animals, strangers, and punishments from parents. Also, some adults also feel relatively unsafe because they retain irrational fears from childhood that cause them to act as if they were afraid of parental punishment. They spend far more energy than do healthy people trying to satisfy safety needs, and when they are not successful in their attempts, they suffer from what Maslow (1970) called basic anxiety. Love and Belongingness Needs
After people partially satisfy their physiological and safety needs, they become motivated by love and belongingness needs, such as the desire for friendship; the wish for a mate and children; the need to belong to a family, a club, a neighborhood, or a nation. Love and belongingness also include some aspects of sex and human contact as well as the need to both give and receive love (Maslow, 1970). People who have had their love and belongingness needs adequately satisfied from early years do not panic when denied love. These people have confidence that they are accepted by those who are important to them, so when other people reject them, they do not feel devastated.
A second group of people consists of those who have never experienced love and belongingness, and, therefore, they are incapable of giving love. They have seldom or never been hugged, or cuddled nor experienced any form of verbal love. Maslow believed that these people will eventually learn to devalue love and to take its absence for granted.
A third category includes those people who have received love and belongingness only in small doses. Because they receive only a taste of love and belongingness, they will be strongly motivated to seek it. In other words, people who have received only a little amount of love have stronger needs for affection and acceptance than do people who have received either a healthy amount of love or no love at all (Maslow, 1970).
Children need love in order to grow psychologically, and their attempts to satisfy this need are usually straightforward and direct. Adults, too, need love, but their attempts to attain it are sometimes cleverly disguised. These adults often engage in self-defeating behaviors, such as pretending to be aloof from other people or adopting a cynical, cold, and calloused manner in their interpersonal relationships. They may give the appearance of self-sufficiency and independence, but in reality they have a strong need to be accepted and loved by other people. Other adults whose love needs remain largely unsatisfied adopt more obvious ways of trying to satisfy them, but they undermine their own success by striving too hard. Their constant supplications for acceptance and affection leave others suspicious, unfriendly, and impenetrable. Esteem Needs
To the extent that people satisfy their love and belongingness needs, they are free to pursue esteem needs, which include self-respect, confidence, competence, and the knowledge that others hold them in high esteem. Maslow (1970) identified two levels of esteem needs—reputation and self-esteem. Reputation is the perception of the prestige, recognition, or fame a person has achieved in the eyes of others, whereas self-esteem is a person’s own feelings of worth and confidence. Self-esteem is based on more than reputation or prestige; it reflects a “desire for strength, for achievement, for adequacy, for mastery and competence, for confidence in the face of the world, and for independence and freedom” (p. 45). In other words, self-esteem is based on real competence and not merely on others’ opinions. Once people meet their esteem needs, they stand on the threshold of self-actualization, the highest need recognized by Maslow. Self-Actualization Needs
When lower level needs are satisfied, people proceed more or less automatically to the next level. However, once esteem needs are met, they do not always move to the level of self-actualization. Originally, Maslow (1950) assumed that self-actualization needs become potent whenever esteem needs have been met. However, during the 1960s, he realized that many of the young students at Brandeis and other campuses around the country had all their lower needs gratified, including reputation and self-esteem, and yet they did not become self-actualizing (Frick, 1982; Hoffman, 1988; Maslow, 1971). Why some people step over the threshold from esteem to self-actualization and others do not is a matter of whether or not they embrace the B-values (B-values will be discussed in the section titled Self-Actualization). People who highly respect such values as truth, beauty, justice, and the other B-values become self-actualizing after their esteem needs are met, whereas people who do not embrace these values are frustrated in their self actualization needs even though they have satisfied each of their other basic needs.

Self-actualization needs include self-fulfillment, the realization of all one’s potential, and a desire to become creative in the full sense of the word (Maslow, 1970). People who have reached the level of self-actualization become fully human, satisfying needs that others merely glimpse or never view at all. They are natural in the same sense that animals and infants are natural; that is, they express their basic human needs and do not allow them to be suppressed by culture.
Self-actualizing people maintain their feelings of self-esteem even when scorned, rejected, and dismissed by other people. In other words, self-actualizers are not dependent on the satisfaction of either love or esteem needs; they become independent from the lower level needs that gave them birth. (We present a more complete sketch of self-actualizing people in the section titled Self- Actualization.) In addition to these five conative needs, Maslow identified three other categories of needs—aesthetic, cognitive, and neurotic. The satisfaction of aesthetic and cognitive needs is consistent with psychological health, whereas the deprivation of these two needs results in pathology. Neurotic needs, however, lead to pathology whether or not they are satisfied.

7.1.3 Aesthetic Needs
Unlike conative needs, aesthetic needs are not universal, but at least some people in every culture seem to be motivated by the need for beauty and aesthetically pleasing experiences (Maslow, 1967). From the days of the cave dwellers down to the present time, some people have produced art for art’s sake. People with strong aesthetic needs desire beautiful and orderly surroundings, and when these needs are not met, they become sick in the same way that they become sick when their conative needs are frustrated. People prefer beauty to ugliness, and they may even become physically and spiritually ill when forced to live in squalid, disorderly environments (Maslow, 1970).

7.1.4 Cognitive Needs
Most people have a desire to know, to solve mysteries, to understand, and to be curious. Maslow (1970) called these desires cognitive needs. When cognitive needs are blocked, all needs on Maslow’s hierarchy are threatened; that is, knowledge is necessary to satisfy each of the five conative needs. People can gratify their physiological needs by knowing how to secure food, safety needs by knowing how to build a shelter, love needs by knowing how to relate to people, esteem needs by knowing how to acquire some level of self-confidence, and self-actualization by fully using their cognitive potential.
Maslow (1968b, 1970) believed that healthy people desire to know more, to theorize, to test hypotheses, to uncover mysteries, or to find out how something works just for the satisfaction of knowing. However, people who have not satisfied their cognitive needs, who have been consistently lied to, have had their curiosity stifled, or have been denied information, become pathological, a pathology that takes the form of skepticism, disillusionment, and cynicism.

Neurotic Needs The satisfaction of conative, aesthetic, and cognitive needs is basic to one’s physical and psychological health, and their frustration leads to some level of illness. However, neurotic needs lead only to stagnation and pathology (Maslow, 1970). By definition, neurotic needs are nonproductive. They perpetuate an unhealthy style of life and have no value in the striving for self-actualization. Neurotic needs are usually reactive; that is, they serve as compensation for unsatisfied basic needs. For example, a person who does not satisfy safety needs may develop a strong desire to hoard money or property. The hoarding drive is a neurotic need that leads to pathology whether or not it is satisfied. Similarly, a neurotic person may be able to establish a close relationship with another person, but that relationship may be a neurotic, symbiotic one that leads to a pathological relationship rather than genuine love.
Maslow (1970) presented yet another example of a neurotic need. A person strongly motivated by power can acquire nearly unlimited power, but that does not make the person less neurotic or less demanding of additional power. “It makes little difference for ultimate health whether a neurotic need be gratified or frustrated” (Maslow, 1970, p. 274).

7.2 General Discussion of Needs
Maslow (1970) estimated that the hypothetical average person has his or her needs satisfied to approximately these levels: physiological, 85%; safety, 70%; love and belongingness, 50%; esteem, 40%; and self-actualization, 10%. The more a lower level need is satisfied, the greater the emergence of the next level need. For example, if love needs are only 10% satisfied, then esteem needs may not be active at all. But if love needs are 25% satisfied, then esteem may emerge 5% as a need. If love is 75% satisfied, then esteem may emerge 50%, and so on. Needs, therefore, emerge gradually, and a person may be simultaneously motivated by needs from two or more levels.
For example, a self-actualizing person may be the honorary guest at a dinner given by close friends in a peaceful restaurant. The act of eating gratifies a physiological need; but at the same time, the guest of honor may be satisfying safety, love, esteem, and self-actualization needs.

7.3 Reversed Order of Needs
Even though needs are generally satisfied in the hierarchical order shown in Figure 1.6, occasionally they are reversed. For some people, the drive for creativity (a selfactualization need) may take precedence over safety and physiological needs. An enthusiastic artist may risk safety and health to complete an important work. For years, the late sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski endangered his health and abandoned companionship to work on carving a mountain in the Black Hills into a monument to Chief Crazy Horse. Reversals, however, are usually more apparent than real, and some seemingly obvious deviations in the order of needs are not variations at all. If we understood the unconscious motivation underlying the behavior, we would recognize that the needs are not reversed.

7.4 Deprivation of Needs
Lack of satisfaction of any of the basic needs leads to some kind of pathology. Deprivation of physiological needs results in malnutrition, fatigue, loss of energy, obsession with sex, and so on. Threats to one’s safety lead to fear, insecurity, and dread. When love needs go unfulfilled, a person becomes defensive, overly aggressive, or socially timid. Lack of esteem results in the illnesses of self-doubt, self-depreciation, and lack of confidence. Deprivation of self-actualization needs also leads to pathology, or more accurately, metapathology. Maslow (1967) defined metapathology as the absence of values, the lack of fulfillment, and the loss of meaning in life.

7.5 Instinctoid Nature of Needs
Maslow (1970) hypothesizes that some human needs are innately determined even though they can be modified by learning. He called these needs instinctoid needs. Sex, for example, is a basic physiological need, but the manner in which it is expressed depends on learning. For most people, then, sex is an instinctoid need. One criterion for separating instinctoid needs from noninstinctoid needs is the level of pathology upon frustration. The thwarting of instinctoid needs produces pathology, whereas the frustration of noninstinctoid needs does not. For example, when people are denied sufficient love, they become sick and are blocked from achieving psychological health. Likewise, when people are frustrated in satisfying their physiological, safety, esteem, and self-actualization needs, they become sick.
Therefore, these needs are instinctoid. On the other hand, the need to comb one’s hair or to speak one’s native tongue is learned, and the frustration of these needs does not ordinarily produce illness. If one would become psychologically ill as the result of not being able to comb one’s hair or to speak one’s native language, then the frustrated need is actually a basic instinctoid need, perhaps love and belongingness or possibly esteem.
A second criterion for distinguishing between instinctoid and noninstinctoid needs is that instinctoid needs are persistent and their satisfaction leads to psychological health. Noninstinctoid needs, in contrast, are usually temporary and their satisfaction is not a prerequisite for health.
A third distinction is that instinctoid needs are species-specific. Therefore, animal instincts cannot be used as a model for studying human motivation. Only humans can be motivated by esteem and self-actualization.
Fourth, though difficult to change, instinctoid needs can be molded, inhibited, or altered by environmental influences. Because many instinctoid needs (e.g., love) are weaker than cultural forces (e.g., aggression in the form of crime or war),
Maslow (1970) insisted that society should “protect the weak, subtle, and tender instinctoid needs if they are not to be overwhelmed by the tougher more powerful culture” (p. 82). Stated another way, even though instinctoid needs are basic and unlearned, they can be changed and even destroyed by the more powerful forces of civilization. Hence, a healthy society should seek ways in which its members can receive satisfaction not only for physiological and safety needs but for love, esteem, and self-actualization needs as well.

7.6 Comparison of Higher and Lower Needs
Important similarities and differences exist between higher level needs (love, esteem, and self-actualization) and lower level needs (physiological and safety). Higher needs are similar to lower ones in that they are instinctoid. Maslow (1970) insisted that love, esteem, and self-actualization are just as biological as thirst, sex, and hunger.
Differences between higher needs and lower ones are those of degree and not of kind. First, higher level needs are later on the phylogenetic or evolutionary scale. For instance, only humans (a relatively recent species) have the need for self actualization. Also, higher needs appear later during the course of individual development; lower level needs must be cared for in infants and children before higher level needs become operative.
Second, higher level needs produce more happiness and more peak experiences, although satisfaction of lower level needs may produce a degree of pleasure. Hedonistic pleasure, however, is usually temporary and not comparable to the quality of happiness produced by the satisfaction of higher needs. Also, the satisfaction of higher level needs is more subjectively desirable to those people who have experienced both higher and lower level needs. In other words, a person who has reached the level of self-actualization would have no motivation to return to a lower stage of development (Maslow, 1970).

7.7 Self-Actualization
Maslow’s ideas on self-actualization began soon after he received his PhD, when he became puzzled about why two of his teachers in New York City—anthropologist Ruth Benedict and psychologist Max Wertheimer—were so different from average people. To Maslow, these two people represented the highest level of human development, and he called this level “self-actualization.”

7.7.1 Criteria for Self-Actualization
What criteria did these and other self-actualizing people possess? First, they were free from psychopathology. They were neither neurotic nor psychotic nor did they have a tendency toward psychological disturbances. This point is an important negative criterion because some neurotic and psychotic individuals have some things in common with self-actualizing people: namely, such characteristics as a heightened sense of reality, mystical experiences, creativity, and detachment from other people. Maslow eliminated from the list of possible self-actualizing people anyone who showed clear signs of psychopathology—excepting some psychosomatic illnesses. Second, these self-actualizing people had progressed through the hierarchy of needs and therefore lived above the subsistence level of existence and had no ever-present threat to their safety. Also, they experienced love and had a well-rooted sense of self-worth. Because they had their lower level needs satisfied, self-actualizing people were better able to tolerate the frustration of these needs, even in the face of criticism and scorn. They are capable of loving a wide variety of people but have no obligation to love everyone.
Maslow’s third criterion for self-actualization was the embracing of the B-values. His self-actualizing people felt comfortable with and even demanded truth, beauty, justice, simplicity, humor, and each of the other B-values that we discuss later.
The final criterion for reaching self-actualization was “full use and exploitation of talents, capacities, potentialities, etc.” (Maslow, 1970, p. 150). In other words, his self-actualizing individuals fulfilled their needs to grow, to develop, and to increasingly become what they were capable of becoming.

7.7.2 Values of Self-Actualizers
Maslow (1971) held that self-actualizing people are motivated by the “eternal verities,” what he called B-values. These “Being” values are indicators of psychological health and are opposed to deficiency needs, which motivate non-self-actualizers. B-values are not needs in the same sense that food, shelter, or companionship are. Maslow termed B-values “metaneeds” to indicate that they are the ultimate level of needs. He distinguished between ordinary need motivation and the motives of self-actualizing people, which he called metamotivation.
Metamotivation is characterized by expressive rather than coping behavior and is associated with the B-values. It differentiates self-actualizing people from those who are not. In other words, metamotivation was Maslow’s tentative answer to the problem of why some people have their lower needs satisfied, are capable of giving and receiving love, possess a great amount of confidence and self-esteem, and yet fail to pass over the threshold to self-actualization. The lives of these people are meaningless and lacking in B-values. Only people who live among the B-values are self-actualizing, and they alone are capable of metamotivation.
Maslow (1964, 1970) identified 14 B-values, but the exact number is not important because ultimately all become one, or at least all are highly correlated. The values of self-actualizing people include truth, goodness, beauty, wholeness or the transcendence of dichotomies, aliveness or spontaneity, uniqueness, perfection, completion, justice and order, simplicity, richness or totality, effortlessness, playfulness or humor, and self-sufficiency or autonomy (see Figure 1.7). These values distinguish self-actualizing people from those whose psychological growth is stunted after they reach esteem needs. Maslow (1970) hypothesized that when people’s metaneeds are not met, they experience illness, an existential illness.

FIGURE 1.7 Maslow’s B-values: A Single Jewel with Many Facets.
All people have a holistic tendency to move toward completeness or totality; and when this movement is thwarted, they suffer feelings of inadequacy, disintegration, and unfulfillment. Absence of the B-values leads to pathology just as surely as lack of food results in malnutrition. When denied the truth, people suffer from paranoia; when they live in ugly surroundings, they become physically ill; without justice and order, they experience fear and anxiety; without playfulness and humor, they become stale, rigid, and somber. Deprivation of any of the B-values results in metapathology, or the lack of a meaningful philosophy of life.

7.7.3 Characteristics of Self-Actualizing People
Maslow believed that all humans have the potential for self-actualization. Then why are we not all self-actualizing? To be self-actualizing, Maslow believed, people must be regularly satisfied in their other needs and must also embrace the B-values. Using these two criteria, he guessed that the psychologically healthiest 1% of the adult population of the United States would be self-actualizing. Maslow (1970) listed 15 tentative qualities that characterize self-actualizing people to at least some degree. More Efficient Perception of Reality
Self-actualizing people can more easily detect phoniness in others. They can discriminate between the genuine and the fake not only in people but also in literature, art, and music. They are not fooled by facades and can see both positive and negative underlying traits in others that are not readily apparent to most people. They perceive ultimate values more clearly than other people do and are less prejudiced and less likely to see the world as they wish it to be.
Also, self-actualizing people are less afraid and more comfortable with the unknown. They not only have a greater tolerance of ambiguity, but they actively seek it and feel comfortable with problems and puzzles that have no definite right or wrong solution. They welcome doubt, uncertainty, indefiniteness, and uncharted paths, a quality that makes self-actualizing people particularly well suited to be philosophers, explorers, or scientists. Acceptance of Self, Others, and Nature
Self-actualizing people can accept themselves the way they are. They lack defensiveness, phoniness, and self-defeating guilt; have good hearty animal appetites for food, sleep, and sex; are not overly critical of their own shortcomings; and are not burdened by undue anxiety or shame. In similar fashion, they accept others and have no compulsive need to instruct, inform, or convert. They can tolerate weaknesses in others and are not threatened by others’ strengths. They accept nature, including human nature, as it is and do not expect perfection either in themselves or in others. They realize that people suffer, grow old, and die. Spontaneity, Simplicity, and Naturalness
Self-actualizing people are spontaneous, simple, and natural. They are unconventional but not compulsively so; they are highly ethical but may appear unethical or nonconforming. They usually behave conventionally, either because the issue is not of great importance or out of deference to others. But when the situation warrants it, they can be unconventional and uncompromising even at the price of ostracism and censure. The similarity between self-actualizing people and children and animals is in their spontaneous and natural behavior. They ordinarily live simple lives in the sense that they have no need to erect a complex veneer designed to deceive the world. They are unpretentious and not afraid or ashamed to express joy, awe, elation, sorrow, anger, or other deeply felt emotions. Problem-Centering
A fourth characteristic of self-actualizing people is their interest in problems outside themselves. Non-self-actualizing people are self-centered and tend to see all the world’s problems in relation to themselves, whereas self-actualizing people are task oriented and concerned with problems outside themselves. This interest allows self-actualizers to develop a mission in life, a purpose for living that spreads beyond self-aggrandizement. Their occupation is not merely a means to earning a living but a vocation, a calling, an end in itself. Self-actualizing people extend their frame of reference far beyond self. They are concerned with eternal problems and adopt a solid philosophical and ethical basis for handling these problems. They are unconcerned with the trivial and the petty. Their realistic perception enables them to clearly distinguish between the important and the unimportant issues in life. The Need for Privacy
Self-actualizing people have a quality of detachment that allows them to be alone without being lonely. They feel relaxed and comfortable when they are either with people or alone. Because they have already satisfied their love and belongingness needs, they have no desperate need to be surrounded by other people. They can find enjoyment in solitude and privacy.
Self-actualizing people may be seen as aloof or uninterested, but in fact, their disinterest is limited to minor matters. They have a global concern for the welfare of others without becoming entangled in minute and insignificant problems. Because they spend little energy attempting to impress others or trying to gain love and acceptance, they have more ability to make responsible choices. They are self-movers, resisting society’s attempts to make them adhere to convention. Autonomy
Self-actualizing people are autonomous and depend on themselves for growth even though at some time in their past they had to have received love and security from others. No one is born autonomous, and therefore no one is completely independent of people. Autonomy can be achieved only through satisfactory relations with others.
However, the confidence that one is loved and accepted without conditions or qualifications can be a powerful force in contributing to feelings of self-worth. Once that confidence is attained, a person no longer depends on others for self-esteem. Self-actualizing people have that confidence and therefore a large measure of autonomy that allows them to be unperturbed by criticism as well as unmoved by flattery. This independence also gives them an inner peace and serenity not enjoyed by those who live for the approval of others. Continued Freshness of Appreciation
Maslow (1970) wrote that “self-actualizing people have the wonderful capacity to appreciate again and again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy” (p. 163). They are keenly aware of their good physical health, friends and loved ones, economic security, and political freedom.
Unlike other people who take their blessings for granted, self-actualizing individuals see with a fresh vision such everyday phenomena as flowers, food, and friends. They have an appreciation of their possessions and do not waste time complaining about a boring, uninteresting existence. In short, they “retain their constant sense of good fortune and gratitude for it” (Maslow, 1970, p. 164). The Peak Experience
As Maslow’s study of self-actualizers continued, he made the unexpected discovery that many of his people had had experiences that were mystical in nature and that somehow gave them a feeling of transcendence. Originally, he thought that these so called peak experiences were far more common among self-actualizers than among non-self-actualizers. Later, however, Maslow (1971) stated that “most people, or almost all people, have peak experiences or ecstasies” (p. 175). Not all peak experiences are of equal intensity; some are only mildly sensed, others moderately felt, and some are quite intensely experienced. In their mild form, these peak experiences probably occur in everyone, although they are seldom noticed.
For example, long-distance runners often report a sort of transcendence, a loss of self, or a feeling of being separated from their body. Sometimes, during periods of intense pleasure or satisfaction, people will experience mystical or peak experiences. Viewing a sunset or some other grandeur of nature may precipitate a peak experience, but these experiences cannot be brought on by an act of the will; often they occur at unexpected, quite ordinary moments.
What is it like to have a peak experience? Maslow (1964) described several guidelines that may help answer this question. First, peak experiences are quite natural and are part of human makeup. Second, people having a peak experience see the whole universe as unified or all in one piece, and they see clearly their place in that universe. Also, during this mystical time, peakers feel both more humble and more powerful at the same time. They feel passive, receptive, more desirous of listening, and more capable of hearing. Simultaneously, they feel more responsible for their activities and perceptions, more active, and more self-determined. Peakers experience a loss of fear, anxiety, and conflict and become more loving, accepting, and spontaneous.
Although peakers often report such emotions as awe, wonder, rapture, ecstasy, reverence, humility, and surrender, they are not likely to want to get something practical from the experience. They often experience disorientation in time and space, a loss of self-consciousness, an unselfish attitude, and an ability to transcend everyday polarities. The peak experience is unmotivated, no striving, and no wishing, and during such an experience, a person experiences no needs, wants, or deficiencies. In addition, Maslow (1964) says, “The peak experience is seen only as beautiful, good, desirable, worthwhile, etc., and is never experienced as evil or undesirable” (p. 63). Maslow also believed that the peak experience often has a lasting effect on a person’s life. Gemeinschaftsgefuhl
Self-actualizing people possess Gemeinschaftsgefühl, Adler’s term for social interest, community feeling, or a sense of oneness with all humanity. Maslow found that his self-actualizers had a kind of caring attitude toward other people. Although they often feel like aliens in a foreign land, self-actualizers nevertheless identify with all other people and have a genuine interest in helping others—strangers as well as friends.
Self-actualizers may become angry, impatient, or disgusted with others; but they retain a feeling of affection for human beings in general. More specifically, Maslow (1970) stated that self-actualizing people are “often saddened, exasperated, and even enraged by the shortcomings of the average person” (p. 166), but nevertheless, they continue to feel a basic kinship with that person. Profound Interpersonal Relations
Related to Gemeinschaftsgefuhl is a special quality of interpersonal relations that involves deep and profound feelings for individuals. Self-actualizers have a nurturant feeling toward people in general, but their close friendships are limited to only a few. They have no frantic need to be friends with everyone, but the few important interpersonal relationships they do have are quite deep and intense. They tend to choose healthy people as friends and avoid intimate interpersonal relationships with dependent or infantile people, although their social interest allows them to have a special feeling of empathy for these less healthy persons.
Self-actualizers are often misunderstood and sometimes despised by others. On the other hand, many are greatly loved and attract a large group of admirers and even worshipers, especially if they have made a notable contribution to their business or professional field. Those healthy people studied by Maslow felt uneasy and embarrassed by this veneration, preferring instead relationships that were mutual rather than one-sided. The Democratic Character Structure
Maslow found that all his self-actualizers possessed democratic values. They could be friendly and considerate with other people regardless of class, color, age, or gender, and in fact, they seemed to be quite unaware of superficial differences among people. Beyond this democratic attitude, self-actualizers have a desire and an ability to learn from anyone. In a learning situation, they recognize how little they know in relation to what they could know. They realize that less healthy individuals have much to offer them, and they are respectful and even humble before these people. However, they do not passively accept evil behavior in others; rather, they fight against evil people and evil behavior. Discrimination between Means and Ends
Self-actualizing people have a clear sense of right and wrong conduct and have little conflict about basic values. They set their sights on ends rather than means and have an unusual ability to distinguish between the two. What other people consider to be a means (e.g., eating or exercising), self-actualizing people often see as an end in itself. They enjoy doing something for its own sake and not just because it is a means to some other end. Maslow (1970) described his self-actualizing people by saying that “they can often enjoy for its own sake the getting to some place as well as the arriving. It is occasionally possible for them to make out of the most trivial and routine activity an intrinsically enjoyable game” (p. 169). Philosophical Sense of Humor
Another distinguishing characteristic of self-actualizing people is their philosophical, nonhostile sense of humor. Most of what passes for humor or comedy is basically hostile, sexual, or scatological. The laugh is usually at someone else’s expense. Healthy people see little humor in put-down jokes. They may poke fun at themselves, but not masochistically so. They make fewer tries at humor than others, but their attempts serve a purpose beyond making people laugh. They amuse, inform, point out ambiguities, provoke a smile rather than a guffaw. The humor of a self-actualizing person is intrinsic to the situation rather than contrived; it is spontaneous rather than planned. Because it is situation-dependent, it usually cannot be repeated. For those who look for examples of a philosophical sense of humor, disappointment is inevitable. A retelling of the incident almost invariably loses its original quality of amusement. One must “be there” to appreciate it. Creativeness
All self-actualizing people studied by Maslow were creative in some sense of the word. In fact, Maslow suggested that creativity and self-actualization may be one and the same. Not all self-actualizers are talented or creative in the arts, but all are creative in their own way. They have a keen perception of truth, beauty, and reality— ingredients that form the foundation of true creativity. Self-actualizing people need not be poets or artists to be creative. In speaking of his mother-in-law (who was also his aunt), Maslow (1968a) vividly pointed out that creativity can come from almost anywhere. He said that whereas his self-actualizing mother-in-law had no special talents as a writer or artist, she was truly creative in preparing homemade soup. Maslow remarked that first-rate soup was more creative than second-rate poetry! Resistance to Enculturation
A final characteristic identified by Maslow was resistance to enculturation. Selfactualizing people have a sense of detachment from their surroundings and are able to transcend a particular culture. They are neither antisocial nor consciously nonconforming. Rather, they are autonomous, following their own standards of conduct and not blindly obeying the rules of others. Self-actualizing people do not waste energy fighting against insignificant customs and regulations of society. Such folkways as dress, hair style, and traffic laws are relatively arbitrary, and self-actualizing people do not make a conspicuous show of defying these conventions. Because they accept conventional style and dress, they are not too different in appearance from anyone else. However, on important matters, they can become strongly aroused to seek social change and to resist societies attempts to enculturation them. Self-actualizing people do not merely have different social mores, but, Maslow (1970) hypothesized, they are “less enculturated, less flattened out, less molded” (p. 174).
For this reason, these healthy people are more individualized and less homogenized than others. They are not all alike. In fact, the term “self-actualization” means to become everything that one can become, to actualize or fulfill all of one’s potentials. When people can accomplish this goal, they become more unique, more heterogeneous, and less shaped by a given culture (Maslow, 1970).

7.8 Love, Sex, and Self-Actualization
Before people can become self-actualizing, they must satisfy their love and belongingness needs. It follows then that self-actualizing people are capable of both giving and receiving love and are no longer motivated by the kind of deficiency love common to other people. Self-actualizing people are capable of B-love that is, love for the essence or “Being” of the other. B-love is mutually felt and shared and not motivated by a deficiency or incompleteness within the lover. In fact, it is unmotivated, expressive behavior. Self-actualizing people do not love because they expect something in return. They simply love and are loved. Their love is never harmful. It is the kind of love that allows lovers to be relaxed, open, and nonsecretive (Maslow, 1970).
Because self-actualizers are capable of a deeper level of love, Maslow (1970). believed that sex between two B-lovers often becomes a kind of mystical experience. Although they are lusty people, fully enjoying sex, food, and other sensuous pleasures, self-actualizers are not dominated by sex. They can more easily tolerate the absence of sex (as well as other basic needs), because they have no deficiency need for it. Sexual activity between B-lovers is not always a heightened emotional experience; sometimes it is taken quite lightly in the spirit of playfulness and humor. But this approach is to be expected, because playfulness and humor are B-values, and like the other B-values; they are an important part of a self-actualizer’s life.

7.9 Philosophy of Science
Maslow’s philosophy of science and his research methods are integral to an understanding of how he arrived at his concept of self-actualization. Maslow (1966) believed that value-free science does not lead to the proper study of human personality. Maslow argued for a different philosophy of science, a humanistic, holistic approach that is not value free and that has scientists who care about the people and topics they investigate. For example, Maslow was motivated to search for self-actualizing people because he idolized and greatly admired Max Wertheimer and Ruth Benedict, his two original models for self-actualization. But he also expressed affection and admiration for Abraham Lincoln, Eleanor Roosevelt, and other self-actualizing people (Maslow, 1968a).
Maslow agreed with Allport (see Chapter 13) that psychological science should place more emphasis on the study of the individual and less on the study of large groups. Subjective reports should be favored over rigidly objective ones, and people should be allowed to tell about themselves in a holistic fashion instead of the more orthodox approach that studies people in bits and pieces. Traditional psychology has dealt with sensations, intelligence, attitudes, stimuli, reflexes, test scores, and hypothetical constructs from an external point of view. It has not been much concerned with the whole person as seen from that person’s subjective view.
When Maslow attended medical school, he was shocked by the impersonal attitude of surgeons who nonchalantly tossed recently removed body parts onto a table. His observation of such a cold and calloused procedure led Maslow to originate the concept of desacralization: that is, the type of science that lacks emotion, joy, wonder, awe, and rapture (Hoffman, 1988). Maslow believed that orthodox science has no ritual or ceremony; and he called for scientists to put values, creativity, emotion, and ritual back into their work. Scientists must be willing to resacralize science or to instill it with human values, emotion, and ritual. Astronomers must not only study the stars; they must be awestruck by them. Psychologists must not only study human personality; they must do so with enjoyment, excitement, wonder, and affection. Maslow (1966) argued for a Taoistic attitude for psychology, one that would be noninterfering, passive, and receptive. This new psychology would abolish prediction and control as the major goals of science and replace them with sheer fascination and the desire to release people from controls so that they can grow and become less predictable. The proper response to mystery, Maslow said, is not analysis but awe.
Maslow insisted that psychologists must themselves be healthy people, able to tolerate ambiguity and uncertainty. They must be intuitive, nonrational, insightful, and courageous enough to ask the right questions. They must also be willing to flounder, to be imprecise, to question their own procedures, and to take on the important problems of psychology. Maslow (1966) contended that there is no need to do well that which is not worth doing. Rather, it is better to do poorly that which is important. In his study of self-actualizing people and peak experiences, Maslow employed research methods consistent with his philosophy of science. He began intuitively, often “skating on thin ice,” then attempted to verify his hunches using idiographic and subjective methods. He often left to others the technical work of gathering evidence. His personal preference was to “scout out ahead,” leaving one area when he grew tired of it and going on to explore new ones (M. H. Hall, 1968).

7.10 Measuring Self-Actualization
Everett L. Shostrom (1974) developed the Personal Orientation Inventory (POI) in an attempt to measure the values and behaviors of self-actualizing people. This inventory consists of 150 forced-choice items, such as (a) “I can feel comfortable with less than a perfect performance” versus (b) “I feel uncomfortable with anything less than a perfect performance”; (a) “ Two people will get along best if each concentrates on pleasing the other” versus (b) “Two people can get along best if each person feels free to express himself ”; and (a) “My moral values are dictated by society” versus (b) “My moral values are self-determined” (Shostrom, 1963). Respondents are asked to choose either statement (a) or statement (b), but they may leave the answer blank if neither statement applies to them or if they do not know anything about the statement.
The POI has 2 major scales and 10 subscales. The first major scale—the Time Competence/Time Incompetence scale—measures the degree to which people are present oriented. The second major scale—the Support scale—is “designed to measure whether an individual’s mode of reaction is characteristically ‘self’ oriented or ‘other’ oriented” (Shostrom, 1974, p. 4). The 10 subscales assess levels of (1) self actualization values, (2) flexibility in applying values, (3) sensitivity to one’s own needs and feelings, (4) spontaneity in expressing feelings behaviorally, (5) self regard, (6) self-acceptance, (7) positive view of humanity, (8) ability to see opposites of life as meaningfully related, (9) acceptance of aggression, and (10) capacity for intimate contact. High scores on the 2 major scales and the 10 subscales indicate some level of self-actualization; low scores do not necessarily suggest pathology but give clues concerning a person’s self-actualizing values and behaviors.
The POI seems to be quite resistant to faking—unless one is familiar with Maslow’s description of a self-actualizing person. In the POI manual, Shostrom (1974) cited several studies in which the examinees were asked to “fake good” or make a favorable impression” in filling out the inventory. When participants followed these instructions, they generally scored lower (in the direction away from self-actualization) than they did when responding honestly to the statements. This finding, indeed, is an interesting one. Why should people lower their scores when trying to look good? The answer lies in Maslow’s concept of self-actualization. Statements that might be true for self-actualizers are not necessarily socially desirable and do not always conform to cultural standards. For example, items such as “I can overcome any obstacles as long as I believe in myself” or “My basic responsibility is to be aware of others’ needs” may seem like desirable goals to someone trying to simulate self-actualization, but a self-actualizing person probably would not endorse either of these items. On the other hand, a truly self-actualizing person may choose such items as “I do not always need to live by the rules and standards of society” or “I do not feel obligated when a stranger does me a favor” (Shostrom, 1974, p. 22). Because one of the characteristics of self-actualizing people is resistance to enculturation, it should not be surprising that attempts to make a good impression will usually result in failure.
Interestingly, Maslow himself seemed to have answered the questions honestly when he filled out the inventory. Despite the fact that he helped in the construction of the POI, Maslow’s own scores were only in the direction of self-actualization and not nearly as high as the scores of people who were definitely self-actualizing (Shostrom, 1974). Even though the POI has demonstrated reasonable reliability and validity, some researchers (Weiss, 1991; Whitson & Olczak, 1991) have criticized the inventory for failing to distinguish between known self-actualizers and non-selfactualizers. Furthermore, the POI has two practical problems; first, it is long, taking most participants 30 to 45 minutes to complete; and second, the two-item forcedchoice format can engender hostility in the participants, who feel frustrated by the limitations of a forced-choice option. To overcome these two practical limitations, Alvin Jones and Rick Crandall (1986) created the Short Index of Self-Actualization, which borrows 15 items from the POI that are most strongly correlated with the total
Self-actualization score. Items on the Short Index are on a 6-point Likert scale (from strongly disagree to strongly agree). Research (Compton, Smith, Cornish, & Qualls, 1996; Rowan, Compton, & Rust, 1995; Runco, Ebersole, & Mraz, 1991) on the Short Index of the POI has indicated that it is a useful scale for assessing self actualization. A third measure of self-actualization is the Brief Index of Self-Actualization, developed by John Sumerlin and Charles Bundrick (1996, 1998). The original Brief Index (Sumerlin & Bundrick, 1996) comprised 40 items placed on a 6-point Likert scale and thus yields scores from 40 to 240. Factor analysis yielded four factors of self-actualization, but because some items were placed in more than one factor, the authors (Sumerlin & Bundrick, 1998) revised the Brief Index of Self-Actualization by eliminating eight items so that no single item was found on more than one factor.
This inventory yields four factors: (I) Core Self-Actualization, or the full use of one’s potentials;(II) Autonomy; (III) Openness to Experience; and (IV) Comfort with Solitude. Typical items include “I enjoy my achievements” (Core Self- Actualization), “I fear that I will not live up to my potential” (a reversed scored item measuring Autonomy), “I am sensitive to the needs of others” (Openness to Experience), and “I enjoy my solitude” (Comfort with Solitude). The reliability, validity, and usefulness of the Brief Index have not yet been fully determined.

7.11 The Jonah Complex
According to Maslow (1970), everyone is born with a will toward health, a tendency to grow toward self-actualization, but few people reach it. What prevents people from achieving this high level of health? Growth toward normal, healthy personality can be blocked at each of the steps in the hierarchy of needs. If people cannot provide for food and shelter, they remain at the level of physiological and safety needs. Others remain blocked at the level of love and belongingness needs, striving to give and receive love and to develop feelings of belongingness. Still others satisfy their love needs and gain self-esteem, but do not advance to the level of self-actualization because they fail to embrace the B-values (Maslow, 1970).
Another obstacle that often blocks people’s growth toward self-actualization is the Jonah complex, or the fear of being one’s best (Maslow, 1979). The Jonah complex is characterized by attempts to run away from one’s destiny just as the biblical Jonah tried to escape from his fate. The Jonah complex, which is found in nearly everyone, represents a fear of success, a fear of being one’s best, and a feeling of awesomeness in the presence of beauty and perfection. Maslow’s own life story demonstrated his Jonah complex. Despite an IQ of 195, he was only an average student, and, as a world-famous psychologist, he frequently experienced panic when called on to deliver a talk.
Why do people run away from greatness and self-fulfillment? Maslow (1971, 1996) offered the following rationale. First, the human body is simply not strong enough to endure the ecstasy of fulfillment for any length of time, just as peak experiences and sexual orgasms would be overly taxing if they lasted too long. Therefore, the intense emotion that accompanies perfection and fulfillment carries with it a shattering sensation such as “This is too much” or “I can’t stand it anymore.”
Maslow (1971) listed a second explanation for why people evade greatness. Most people, he reasoned, have private ambition to be great, to write a great novel, to be a movie star, to become a world-famous scientist, and so on. However, when they compare themselves with those who have accomplished greatness, they are appalled by their own arrogance: “Who am I to think I could do as well as this great person?” As a defense against this grandiosity or “sinful pride,” they lower their aspirations, feel stupid and humble, and adopt the self-defeating approach of running away from the realization of their full potentials. Although the Jonah complex stands out most sharply in neurotic people, nearly everyone has some timidity toward seeking perfection and greatness. People allow false humility to stifle creativity, and thus they prevent themselves from becoming self-actualizing.

7.12 Critique of Maslow
Maslow’s search for the self-actualizing person did not end with his empirical studies. In his later years, he would frequently speculate about self-actualization with little evidence to support his suppositions. Although this practice opens the door for criticizing Maslow, he was unconcerned about desacralized, or orthodox, science. Nevertheless, we use the same criteria to evaluate holistic-dynamic personality theory as we do with the other theories. First, how does Maslow’s theory rate on its ability to generate research? On this criterion, we rate Maslow’s theory a little above average. Self-actualization remains a popular topic with researchers, and the tests of self-actualization have facilitated efforts to investigate this illusive concept. However, Maslow’s notions about met motivation, the hierarchy of needs, the Jonah complex, and instinctoid needs have received less research interest. On the criterion of falsifiability, we must rate Maslow’s theory low. Researchers remained handicapped in their ability to falsify or confirm Maslow’s means of identifying self-actualizing people. Maslow said that his self-actualizing people refused to take any tests that might assess self-actualization. If this is true, then the various inventories that purport to measure self-actualization may be incapable of identifying the truly self-actualizing person.
However, if researchers wish to follow Maslow’s lead and use personal interviews, they will have few guidelines to direct them. Because Maslow failed to provide an operational definition of self-actualization and a full description of his sampling procedures, researchers cannot be certain that they are replicating Maslow’s original study or that they are identifying the same syndrome of self-actualization. Maslow left future researchers with few clear guidelines to follow when attempting to replicate his studies on self-actualization. Lacking operational definitions of most of Maslow’s concepts, researchers are able to neither verify nor falsify much of his basic theory. Nevertheless, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs framework gives his theory excellent flexibility to organize what is known about human behavior. Maslow’s theory is also quite consistent with common sense. For example, common sense suggests that a person must have enough to eat before being motivated by other matters. Starving people care little about political philosophy. Their primary motivation is to obtain food, not to sympathize with one political philosophy or another. Similarly, people living under threat to their physical well-being will be motivated mostly to secure safety, and people who have physiological and safety needs relatively satisfied will strive to be accepted and to establish a love relationship.
Does Maslow’s theory serve as a guide to the practitioner? On this criterion, we rate the theory as highly useful. For example, psychotherapists who have clients with threatened safety needs must provide a safe and secure environment for those clients. Once clients have satisfied their safety needs, the therapist can work to provide them with feelings of love and belongingness. Likewise, personnel managers in business and industry can use Maslow’s theory to motivate workers. The theory suggests that increases in pay cannot satisfy any needs beyond the physiological and safety levels. Because physiological and safety needs are already largely gratified for the average worker in the United States, wage increases per se will not permanently increase worker morale and productivity. Pay raises can satisfy higher level needs only when workers see them as recognition for a job well done. Maslow’s theory suggests that business executives should allow workers more responsibility and freedom, tap into their ingenuity and creativity in solving problems, and encourage them to use their intelligence and imagination on the job.
Is the theory internally consistent? Unfortunately, Maslow’s arcane and often unclear language makes important parts of his theory ambiguous and inconsistent. Apart from the problem of idiosyncratic language, however, Maslow’s theory ranks high on the criterion of internal consistency. The hierarchy of needs concept follows a logical progression, and Maslow hypothesized that the order of needs is the same for everyone, although he does not overlook the possibility of certain reversals. Aside from some deficiencies in his scientific methods, Maslow’s theory has a consistency and precision that give it popular appeal.
Is Maslow’s theory parsimonious, or does it contain superfluous fabricated concepts and models? At first glance, the theory seems quite simplistic. A hierarchy of needs model with only five steps gives the theory a deceptive appearance of simplicity. A full understanding of Maslow’s total theory, however, suggests a far more complex model. Overall, the theory is moderately parsimonious.

This chapter offers only an overview of the world of personality. It has examined different theoretical explanations of why we show consistency in our behavior, thoughts and actions and why these consistencies make us different from each other. Psychoanalytic theorists focus on unconscious processes and the impact of early childhood experience; in contrast, humanistic theorists emphasize human experience and positive aspects of behavior. Trait theorists have been concerned with the labeling and measurement of personality dimensions, based on assumptions of stable genetic and biological explanations for personality. The complex way in which genes and environment determine personality has presented an important puzzle for personality theory. Social–cognitive theories provide an explanation for differences in personality in terms of the ways we process information and perceive our social world. Within psychology the complexities of how our personality develops and determines our behavior have resulted in a number of differing theoretical perspectives and debates. These debates – about interactions between genes and environment, biology and experience, the person and the situation – will continue to engage psychologists in the twenty-first century.

9. SUMMARY * Personality theorists are concerned with identifying generalizations that can be made about consistent individual differences between people’s behavior and the causes and consequences of these differences. * Sigmund Freud developed a psychoanalytic approach that emphasized the role of the unconscious in regulating behavior. Freud produced hypothetical models of the structure of the mind, the way personality works and the ways in which it develops. * Psychoanalytic theories are not testable in the same way as modern scientific psychology. * Traits are descriptors for personality, which have their origins in everyday language. Hans Eysenck and Raymond Cattell both developed trait theories that exerted a considerable impact on research in personality. * In recent years, researchers have developed a five factor model of personality, which might represent evidence of a universal structure for personality. * Biological theories of personality attempt to explain differences in behavior in terms of differences in physiology, particularly brain function. * Hans Eysenck developed explanations for both extraversion and neuroticism based on theories of cortical arousal. * Research in behavioral genetics has permitted the examination of both genetic and environmental factors in personality. * Identical twins are much more similar in personality than are fraternal twins, but personality similarities between parents and children, or between siblings, are not always very strong. * Social– cognitive theories of personality examine consistent differences in the ways people process social information, allowing us to make predictions about individuals’ behavior in particular contexts. Mischel devised a framework of broad cognitive categories involving processes that may lead to personality differences.

Carver, C.S., & Scheier, M.F. (1996). Perspectives on Personality. 3rd edn. Needham Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon. Divides personality into different perspectives and includes a considerable amount of material on self-regulation.

Hall, C. S. (1978}. A Primer of Freudian Psychology. New American Library. A good review of Freud's work, analyzing the impact of psychoanalysis on more modern theories of personality.

Mischel, W. (1999). Introduction to Personality. 6th edn. Orlando: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. An interesting introduction to personality research.

Pervin, L.A. (1996). The Science of Personality. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
A readable and reasonably comprehensive account of personality research.

Peterson, C., Maier, S.F., & Seligman, M.E.P. (1993). Learned Helplessness: A Theory for the Age of Personal Control. New York: Oxford University Press. The history and development of learned helplessness theory.

Plomin, R. (1994). Genetics and Experience: The Interplay Between Nature and Nurture. London: Sage. Examines the role of both nature and nurture in the development of individual differences.

Plomin, R., DeFries, J.C., McClearn, G.E., & Rutter, M. (1997). Behavioral Genetics. 3rd edn. New York: Freeman. Introduces the field of behavioural genetics, including genetic factors in ability and disability, personality and psychopathology.

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...Personality Theories Kimisa Sanders Essentials of Psychology February 24, 2014 Joyce Reese The psychoanalytic perspective of personality highlights the importance of the unconscious mind and early childhood. Sigmund Freud, a psychiatrist created this perspective on personality. Freud believed that things hidden in the unconscious mind could be revealed in a number of various ways, including free association, through dreams, and slips of the tongue. Neo-Freudian theorist including Carl Jung, Erik Erikson, Alfred Adler and Karen Horney believed in the importance of the unconscious mind, but disagreed with of concepts of Freud’s theories. Several of Freud’s theories and observations were based on case studies and clinical studies, making his finding difficult to generalize to a greater population. Freud saw behavior and personality as a result of a constant exchange between conflicting psychological forces. These psychological forces work at three different levels of awareness: The preconscious, the conscious, and the unconscious. The preconscious contains information that you are not aware of at the moment such as, recent events and memories but can easily bring to remembrance. The conscience level represents all the feelings, thoughts, and sensation you are aware of at this present moment. Furthermore, the conscious and the preconscious are only a small part of the mind. The bulk of these psychological processes made up of the unconscious. You are not directly aware of......

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Theories of Personality

...* Personality is “an individual’s unique constellation of consistent behavioral traits”. * A personality trait is “a durable disposition to behave in a particular way in a variety of situations”. * Common personality traits include: * honest * moody * Impulsive * Friendly * Sum total of the qualities and characteristics of a person as shown in her manner of walking, talking, dressing, and her attitudes, interests, and ways of reacting to other people * The unique, relatively enduring internal and external aspects of a person’s character that influence behavior in different situations Theory * General principle formulated to explain a group of related phenomena * A model of reality that helps us to understand, explain, predict, and control that reality * Is an integrated set of general principles designed to explain, predict, and even suggest ways of controlling certain phenomena Personology * the study of personality * The point of view that all behavior should be studied in relation to the central core of personality Personologist * One who is skilled in the science of personology * One who is trained to analyze a person’s personality on the basis of the structure and form of his / her body. Aspects of Personality PHYSICAL ASPECTS * Refers to the body built, height, weight, texture of the skin, shape of the lips MENTAL ASPECTS * Refers to the range of ideas a person......

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Personality Theories

...The Who's Who of Personality Theories Tammy Blackstone BEH/225 June 14. 2015 Jennifer Shamoun The Who's Who of Personality Theories There are many theories that have been utilized to describe personality. Four of the major theories about how personalities are formed are the psychodynamic theory, the humanistic theory, the trait theory, and the behaviorist/social learning theory. These different perspectives vary widely in their approach to understanding personality (Coon & Mitterer, 2015). Is one’s personality formed as the result of internal struggles, or because one is striving to be the best they can be? Maybe it is formed because the individual has a dominant trait that is present in all aspects of his life, or maybe because the environment has conditioned him to adapt. Since one’s personality cannot be seen, psychologists have devised these theories to help explain why individuals behave the way they do. Is it from a repressed childhood experience, the goal to become self-actualized, a dominant trait, or the surrounding environment? According to Coon and Mitterer (2015), one’s personality reflects who they are, have been, and will continue to be. It makes their behavior predictable in a given situation. Noted theorists such as Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung believed in the psychoanalytic perspective, and Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow believed in the humanistic approach. Although some theorists used vastly different approaches than others, all have......

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