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Chapter 13

PSY100 Chapter 13

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University of Toronto St. George
Dan Dolderman

Chapter 13- Personality • Personality: characteristic thoughts, emotional responses, and behaviours that are relatively stable in an individual over time and across circumstances Freud’s Psychodynamic Theory of Personality • Unconscious forces influence behaviour = instincts • Instincts= mental representations arising out of biological or physical need • To satisfy life instinct follow pleasure principle (seek pleasure avoid pain) • E that promotes pleasure seeking= libido • Topographical model • Mind is divided into 3 zones of mental awareness 1. Conscious: people are aware of their thoughts, 2. Preconscious: content that is not currently in awareness but can easily be retrieved (LTM) 3. Unconscious: material mind cannot easily retrieve • Unconscious mind contains wishes, desires, motives that are associated with conflict, anxiety and pain • Freud believed that children go through psychosexual stages to satisfy libidinal urges focused on 1 of the erogenous zones (mouth, anus, genitals) • Oral stage- pleasure sought through mouth- hungry infant • Anal stage- toilet training • Phallic stage- genitals, also children desire exclusive relationship with opposite sex parent- considers same sex parent rival • Latency stage: libidinal urges are suppressed or channeled into doing schoolwork • Genital stage: mature attitudes about sexuality and adulthood • Freud argued that progression through psychosexual stages affects personality • Ex: those fixated at oral stages oral personalities (need to seek pleasure through mouth smoking and are excessively needy) • Neo Freudians object relations theory rejected Freud’s emphasis on sexual forces, focus on social interactions- children’s emotional attachment to parents Structural model of personality Id- unconscious- pleasure principle Superego- societal standards and conduct- morality principle Ego- balance b/t 2- reality principle • Conflict b/t ID and superego leads to anxiety ego copes with through defense mechanisms (suppression, reaction formation) Humanistic approaches • Emphasize personal experience and belief systems, seek self-actualization • Focuses on subjective human experience (phenomenology) • Carl Roger’s person-centered approach to personality: emphasizes people’s personal understandings or phenomenology (therapists need to focus on client’s problems as in the way that they understand them) • Highlights importance of how parental treatment affects personality development • Parents should raise kids with unconditional positive regard, in which kids are loved, accepted, prized no matter how they behave • Child raised in this enviro will develop a healthy self-esteem and will become a fully functioning person Types & Traits Personality types: discrete categories based on global personality characteristics • Implicit personality theory: our tendency to assume certain personality characteristics go together (ex: introverted person doesn’t like going to parties) Personality traits: continuum, used to see extent to which individuals differ in personality dispositions such as sociability, cheerfulness, aggressiveness Cattell identified 16 basic dimensions of personality by factor analysis: grouping items according to their similarities ex: friendliness (nice, pleasant, etc.) Eysenck’s hierarchal model of personality • Specific response level- observed behaviours • Habitual response level – repeated specific response • Trait level- person observed to behave same way on many occasions becomes trait • Superordinate level: • introversion/extroversion • emotional stability: extent to which people’s moods and emotions change • psychoticism: aggressive, impulsive, and self-centered Five Factor Theory- 5 basic personality traits Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism (OCEAN) • each factor is a higher order trait comprising interrelated lower-order traits (ex: conscientiousness organization, self-discipline, etc. • big 5 shown to predict a wide variety of different behaviorus, outcomes on tests/ grades in University (↑conscientiousness) Cognitive social theories of personalities • Personality= behaviour that emerges from people’s interpretation of their social worlds and from beliefs about how they will affect and be affected by their social situations • Mischel & Shoda believed that personality tratis alone could not predict behaviour • Cognitive-affective personality system (CAPS): people’s responses are influenced by how they perceive a given situation, their affective response to the situation, their skills in dealing with challenges and their anticipation of the outcomes of their behaviour • Cognitive social theories also emphasize self-regulatory capacities in which ppl set goals, evaluate their progress, adjust behaviour accordingly Study of personality can be divided into 2 approaches 1. idiographic approaches: person-centered approach, assumes all individuals are unique • Used to examine case studies of individuals thorough interviews or biographical information (Hitler) • Narrative psychologists pay attention to life stories people tell about lives 2. nomothetic approaches: focus on common traits among all, but on which ind. vary • Used to compare people by using common trait measures like questionnaires (list off 100 common traits, describe from 1-5 how well each describes you) Projective measures: explore unconscious by having people describe or tell stores about ambiguous stimulus items • Ex: Rorschach ink blot test , thematic appreciation test (ambiguous story, person asked to tell a story about it motivational schemas emerge, show traits such as motivation for achievement, power, affiliation) Objective measures: personality only what raters believe of observe by using self- report questionnaires, interviews • Although “objective”, tests require people to make subjective judgments Observers show accuracy in trait judgements • Person’s close friends able to predict person’s behaviour more accurately than the person does Situationism: behaviour is determined more by situations than my personality traits (explains how people honest in one situation, lie in another) • Suggest that personality is not stable • Situations differ in extent to which they constrain behaviour • Strong situations (funerals, job interviews) can’t tell apart extroverted person from introverted person vs. party Critique: extent to which trait predicts behaviour depends on centrality of trait (people more consistent in their central traits), the aggregation of behaviour over time (if you take numerous situations traits more predictive of behaviour) and type of trait (certain traits like honesty more consistent over time) More evidence suggests that behaviour is influenced by interaction of personality and situations (interactionists perspective) Cultural and Gender Differences in Personality • Clear evidence shows that self-reports often do not match cultural stereotypes about the respondents (if you ask a group of ppl to rate personality traits of typical ppl from a given culture, and compare results with self-reports from individuals in that culture little correspondence) • N
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