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Chapter 12

Chapter 12 - Personality.docx

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PSYC 1010
Jennifer Steeves

Personality • A hypothetical construct use to explain:  Consistent or stable tendencies across situations  Individual differences • Grand theories gave way to a focus on narrower and specific aspects of personality traits  Problem – They don’t help us make predictions • Personality – An individual’s unique constellation of consistent behavioural traits • Studying personality can help us predict – E.g. who will fit what sort of job Personality Traits • A durable disposition to behave in a particular way in a variety of situations Raymond B. Cattell and Factor Analysis • Factor Analysis – correlations among many variables are analyzed to identify closely related clusters of variables • Looking for an underlying factors which may explain the correlation (a hidden factor)  Not a theory – just information from the analysis Biological Perspectives Eysenck’s Theory • Personality structure as a hierarchy of traits • Superficial traits derived from more basic traits • Out of a few basic traits emerge many superficial traits • Basic Traits – Extraversion, neuroticism, and psychoticism • Some people can be conditioned more readily than others because of differences in the physiological functioning (conditioning ability) • E.g. – Introverts tend to have higher levels of physiological arousal (easier to condition)  Says that this is due to genetics Eysenk’s Model of Personality Structure The Five-Factor Model – The Big Five • Conscientiousness (Constraint) – The tendency to be reliable and ethical • Agreeableness – The willingness to collaborate • Neuroticism (Negative Emotionality) – The ability to handle stress • Openness to Experience – The capacity to be an innovative problem solver • Extraversion (Positive Emotionality) – The ability to bond with others • Buss Theory – The Big Five are a part of effective organizational behaviour (human evolution) Big Five – Cross Culturally • Big Five factors seem to emerge • Seems to be useful for prediction in the West – but not in other cultures so much  We don’t know why • In any culture there is more than one image of a person that people aspire to be  Many different characters that seem to be emulated in any culture  Disproves the stereotypes we might have about specific cultures • Individualistic vs. Interdependent (Collectivistic) view of self  Individualistic – Everyone is special and you should focus on how unique you are  Interdependent – Doing your part within the group is what makes you special  ‘The nail that stands out gets pounded down’ Big Five – Over Life Span (Srivastava, 2003) • On average people are getting better at dealing with the ups and down of life • We get to be more conscientious by 20-50 due to new work, commitments, and experiences • Worry and Sense of Stability decreases with women – not with men • Openness declines slightly with age in both genders • Extroversion, need to seek social support declines with women – not with men • This suggests that our personalities aren’t written in stone- they change over time The Causes/Development of Personality Psychodynamic Perspectives – Sigmund Freud • An attempt to explain personality, motivation, and psychological disorders • Focuses on the influence of early childhood experiences, on unconscious motives and conflicts, and on the methods people use to cope with their sexual and aggressive urges • Born out of the Victorian era with its repression – especially sexual • Suggested individuals were “not masters of their own minds” or their own destinies Structure of Personality • Id – The primitive instinctive component of personality that operates as a part of the pleasure principle; the activation system that leads to usually receiving rewards  Causes primitive, illogical, and fantasy-oriented thinking • Ego – Rational realistic-oriented course of problem solving  The part that tries to figure out how to get what the Id needs  Takes into account the principles of reality and the laws of physics • Superego – The part of the nervous system that stores the information for data  Takes into account moral and social standards – keeps the Ego in check  Not in conflict with the Id – there in service of the Id and Ego Levels of Awareness • Recognition of how unconscious forces can influence behaviour  E.g. – “Slips of the tongue” or dreams may express hidden desires or fears • Three levels of awareness:  Conscious – Includes everything one is aware of  Preconscious – The part of the mind that represents ordinary memory  Unconscious – A reservoir of feelings, thoughts, urges, and memories that outside of our conscious awareness Internal Conflict – Sex and Aggression • Sex and aggression are subject to more complex and ambiguous social controls and inconsistent messages than other basic motives • These drives are thwarted more regularly than other biological urges Anxiety and Defense Mechanisms • Internal tension often played out entirely in the unconscious • Anxiety because concern about:  Id getting out of control  Superego is getting out of control • Because anxiety is unpleasant we use defense mechanisms • Defense Mechanisms – Largely unconscious reactions that protect a person from unpleasant emotions; such as anxiety and guilt  They have become a part of our everyday talk and culture Development – Psychosexual Stages • “The child is father to the man…” • Oral – Excessive gratification/Under-gratification may lead to fixation in this stage  Adults may end up liking to eat a lot or getting a job where they use their mouth • Anal – If the child • Phallic – At the age of 4 the child’s sensitivity and pleasure comes out of the genitalia  Boys start getting sexually turned on by their primary caregiver  The main competitor becomes the Father  So the boy imitates the father in order to get their own ‘mommy’  Girls do the opposite as boys – Penis Envy in Women  Karen Horney – Said that the penis symbolizes power in Penis Envy o Men are jealous of women because they can’t have babies o So Men search after power to be better than women • Latency – Not many things happen for a few years • Genital – Carl Gustave Jung’s Analytical Psychology • Non-Jewish supporter of Freud • Broke with Freud because too much focus on sex and aggressive drives  Little focus on socio-cultural factors – Freud never forgave him • Also focused on unconscious determinants of personality  But looked at both personal and collective unconscious  Humans evolved in relation to different aspects in our environment (e.g. sun cycle) • Archetypes – emotionally charged images and thought forms that have universal meaning • Focus on cultural images, art, as well and dreams, slips of tongue, “mandala” • Also influenced by eastern culture (many artists and writers very influenced Jung;Herman Hes
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