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They arise in response to perceptions of psychic danger or conflict, or to unexpected change in the internal or external environment, or in response to cognitive dissonance (American Psychiatric Association 1994). They obscure or diminish stressful mental representations that if unmitigated would give rise to depression or anxiety. They can alter our perception of any or all of the following: subject (self?), object (other person), idea, or emotion. In addition, defenses dampen awareness of and response to sudden changes in reality, emotions and desires, conscience, and relationships with peoples. As in the case of physiological homeo-stasis, but in contrast to so-called coping strategies,defense mechanisms are usually deployed outside of awareness. Similar to hypnosis, the use of defense mechanisms compromises other facets of cognition. General Description of Defense Mechanisms Phenomenology and pathophysiology both play an important role in our understanding of disease. Whereas nineteenth century medical phenomenolo-gists viewed pus, fever, pain, and coughing as evidence of disease, twentieth century pathophysiologists learned to regard such symptoms as evidence of the body’s healthy efforts to cope with physical or infectious insult. In parallel fashion, much of what modern psychiatric phenomenologists classify as disorders can be reclassified by those with a more psychodynamic viewpoint as homeostatic mental mechanisms to cope with psychological stress. The use of defense mechanisms usually alters perception of both internal and external reality. Awareness of instinctual ‘wishes’ is usually diminished. Alternatively, as is the case with reaction formation, antithetical wishes may be passionately adhered to. Mechanisms of defense keep affects within bearable limits during sudden changes in emotional life, such as the death of a loved one. They can deflect or deny sudden increases in biological drives, such as heightened sexual awareness and aggression during adolescence. Defenses also allow individuals a period of respite to master changes in self-image that cannot be immediately integrated. Examples of such changes might be puberty, an amputation, or even a promotion. Defenses can mitigate inevitable crises of conscience (e.g., placing a parent in a nursing home). Finally, defenses enable individuals to attenuate unresolved conflicts with important people, living or dead. In each case the individual appears to deal with a sudden stress by ‘denial’ or ‘repression.’ But used indiscriminately, these two terms lose their specificity. For example, the denial of the conflict laden realization T hate my father’ might become transformed by defense to: ‘My father hates me’ (maladaptive projection); T love my father so much’ (compromising reaction formation); or T beat my father at tennis’ (adaptive sublimation). Defense mechanisms involve far more than simple neglect or repression of reality. They reflect integrated dynamic psychological processes. Like their physiological analogues of response to tissue injury rubor, calor, dolor, and turgor defenses reflect healthy, often highly coordinated responses to stress rather than a deficit state or a learned voluntary defensive strategy. Thus, a defense mechanism has more in common with an opossum involuntarily but skillfully playing dead than with either the involuntary paralysis of polio or the consciously controlled evasive maneuvers of a soccer halfback. Implicit in the concept of defense is the conviction that the patient’s idiosyncratic defensive response to stress shapes psychopathology. For example, physicians no longer classify a cough as disease, but as a coping mechanism for respiratory obstruction. There is increasing evidence that choice of defensive styles makes a major contribution to individual differences in response to stressful environments (Vaillant 1992). For example, some people respond to danger or loss in a surprisingly stoic or altruistic
fashion, whereas others become phobic (displacement) or get the giggles (dissociation) or retreat into soothing reverie (autistic fantasy). These responses can be differentiated by assigning different labels to the mechanisms underlying the responses. While crosscultural studies are still sorely needed, socioeconomic status, intelligence, and education do not seem to be causal predictors of the maturity of an individual’s defenses (Vaillant 1992). Despite problems in reliability, defenses provide a valuable diagnostic axis for conceptualizing psycho-pathology. By including defensive style as part of the mental status or diagnostic formulation, clinicians are better able to comprehend what is adaptive as well as maladaptive about their patients’ unreasonable behavior. By reframing patients’ irrational behavior in terms of defense mechanisms, clinicians learn to view qualities that initially seemed most unreasonable and unlikeable about their patients as human efforts to cope with conflict. Taxonomy of Defense Unfortunately, there is as much disagreement about the taxonomy of defense mechanisms as about the taxonomy of personality types, but progress is being made. First, adaptation to psychological stress can be divided into three broad classes. One class consists of voluntary cognitive or coping strategies which can be taught and rehearsed; such strategies are analogous to consciously using a tourniquet to stop one’s own bleeding. The second class of coping mechanisms is seeking social support or help from others; such support seeking is analogous to seeking help from a doctor in response to bleeding. The third class of coping mechanisms are the relatively involuntary defense mechanisms. Such coping mechanisms are analogous to depending on one’s own clotting mechanisms in order to stop bleeding. Anna Freud (1936), Sigmund Freud’s daughter, was the first investigator to introduce a formal taxonomy of defenses. By the 1970s due to the protean and ephemeral nature of defensive mental phenomena, other competing taxonomies arose (e.g., Kernberg 1975, Thomae 1987, Beutel 1988, Lazarus and Folkman 1984). Since the 1970s, several empirical studies have suggested that it is possible to arrange defense mechanisms into a hierarchy of relative psychopathology (e.g., projection (paranoia), to displacement (phobia),to sublimation (art)), and also place them along a continuum of personality development (Vaillant 1977, Perry and Cooper 1989). With the passage of decades, a sexually abused child’s defenses could mature from acting out (e.g., rebellious promiscuity to reaction formation (Tjoining a convent where sex is bad and celibacy is good) to altruism (as a nun in midlife counseling pregnant teenage mothers). The most recent American diagnostic manual (American Psychiatric Association 1994) provides a glossary of consensually validated definitions and arranges defense mechanisms into seven general classes of relative psychopathology (Table 1). All classes of defenses in Table 1 are effective in ‘denying’ or defusing conflict and in ‘repressing’ or minimizing stress, but the mechanisms differ greatly in the severity of the psychiatric diagnoses assigned to their users and in their effect on long-term psychosocial adaptation. At level I, the most pathological category, are found denial and distortion of external reality. These mechanisms are common in young children, in our dreams, and in psychosis. The definition of such denial in Table 1 is a far more narrow but more specific use of the term than many writers who use the term denial interchangeably with defense mechanisms. Level I defenses rarely respond to simple psychological intervention. To breach them requires altering the brain by neuroleptics or waking the dreamer.
More common to everyday life are the relatively maladaptive defenses found in levels II-V. These categories are associated with adolescence, immature adults, and individuals with personality disorders. They externalize responsibility and allow individuals with personality disorders to appear to refuse help. Such defenses are negatively correlated with mental health. They profoundly distort the affective component of human relationships. Use of such defenses cause more immediate suffering to those in the environment than to the user. Defenses in these categories rarely respond to verbal interpretation alone. They can be breached by confrontation often by a group of supportive peers. These maladaptive defenses can also be breached by improving psychological homeostasis by rendering the individual less anxious and lonely through empathic social support, less tired and hungry through rest and food, less intoxicated through sobriety, or less adolescent through maturation. Level VI defenses are often associated with anxiety disorders and with the psychopathology of everyday life. Level VI include mechanisms like repression (i.e., deleting the idea from a conscious emotion), intel-lectualization (i.e., deleting the emotion from a conscious idea), reaction formation, and displacement (i.e., transferring the emotion to a more neutral object). In contrast to the less adaptive defenses, the defenses of neurosis are manifested clinically by phobias, compulsions, obsessions, somatizations, and amnesias. Such users often seek psychological help, and such defenses respond more readily to interpretation. Such defenses cause more suffering to the user than to those in the environment. High adaptive level (VII) defenses still distort and alter awareness of and emotional response to conscience, relationships, and reality, but they perform these tasks gracefully and flexibly writing great tragedy (i.e., sublimation), for example, is financially rewarding, instinctually gratifying, and sometimes life saving for the author. The ‘distortion’ involved in stoicism (suppression), humor, and altruism seems as ethical and as mentally healthy to an observer as the immature defenses seem immoral and antisocial. Historical Background That emotions were significant to humans had been known since ancient times, but it was difficult to develop a concept of defense until psychology could conceptualize the interaction and/or conflict between ideas and emotions. For example, in their influential textbooks the two greatest psychologists of the nineteenth century, Wilhelm Wundt (1894) and William James (1890) discuss a psychology that consisted almost entirely of cognition, not emotion. Appreciation of the likelihood that it was distortion of ideas and emotions via unconscious mechanisms of defense that led to psychopathology originated with Sigmund Freud (1894). Late in the nineteenth century neurologists had obtained a clearer understanding of the sensory and motor distribution of the nerves. They could appreciate that it was impossible for an individual to have ‘glove anesthesia,’ and certain common paralyses due to neurological damage. Thus, it became possible for neurological science to appreciate that patients could experience anesthesia to pin prick based on their mind’s ‘defensively’ or ‘adaptively’ to distort sensory reality. Trained in both neurology and physiology, Freud was able to appreciate the importance of the phenomena to psychopathology. He suggested that upsetting emotions and ideas could be cognitively distorted in a manner similar to pain and motor behavior. Freud (1894) observed not only that emotion could be ‘dislocated or transposed’ from ideas (by involuntary mechanisms like dissociation, repression, and intellectualization), but also that emotion could be ‘reattached’ to other ideas (by the mechanism of displacement).
We can contrast a patient’s symptoms (or a healthy person’s creative product) with his own self-report or mental content and with someone else’s objective report. For example. sometimes one’s obsessions are due to genetic factors alleviated by serotonin reuptake inhibitors and sometimes obsessions are efforts at conflict resolution via the defenses of intellectualization. in the 1970s both the demands for rater reliability and advances in neuropsychiatry led to psychodynamic explanations for psychopathology falling from favor. Sometimes the symptoms of neuropathology are wrongly imputed to be due to conflict-driven adaptive aberrations of a normal brain. Very recently. and Conte and Plutchick (1995) have clarified our understanding of defenses with experimental and reliability studies. displacement. we can identify defenses much as we measure the height of mountains that we cannot climb by triangulation. First. behaviors associated with level VII defense can arise from sources other than conflict. and a paranoid delusion can be distinguished from true political persecution. (e) Finally. and astrology. objectivity. and is not readily susceptible to experimental proof. For example. Freud conceived of a special class of defense mechanisms ’sublimations’ that could transmute psychic conflict not into a source of pathology. the American psychiatric manual for diagnosis. 238-9). a true paralysis can be distinguished from paresis due to psycho-genie illusion. defenses posed a problem for experimental psychology. But several empirical strategies permit placing defense mechanisms on a firmer footing than say handwriting analysis. not traits. Freud described most of the defense mechanisms of which we speak today and identified five of their important properties. As was true in the pre-Freudian era. several empirical studies well reviewed by Cramer (1991). psychology needs to take advantage of recent advances in neuroscience to achieve further reliability. The hierarchy of defenses presented in Table 1 is no more than a system of metaphors. Since the 1970s. 1906/1964. phobias and paranoia were again attributed more to brain pathology than to adaptive displacement and projection of conflict. what is the difference between paranoia and projection. much mental illness like coughing and fever might be due to psychological efforts of homeostasis. Freud expanded his theory to suggest that no experience ‘could have a have a pathogenic effect unless it appeared intolerable to the patient’s ego and gave rise to efforts at defense’ (Freud.and reaction formation. Over a period of 40 years. 276). or medical record. This led to a tentative hierarchy and glossary of consensually validated definitions of defense being included in DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association 1994). (d) Defenses reflected states. phrenology. but into culture and virtue (1905/1964. For example. (b) Defenses were involuntary. In this way an unconsciously motivated slip of the tongue can be distinguished from a simple mistake. the limitations of such a purely descriptive psychiatry has led at least American psychiatrists to return defenses to their diagnostic nomenclature (Table 1). there is no clear line between character (enduring traits) and defenses (shorterlived responses to environment). defenses could be adaptive as well as pathological. In the future. In addition. They were dynamic and reversible. Thus. altruism can result from gratitude and empathy as well as from conflict. however. and validity for the study of defenses. Vaillant (1992). In other words.Later. From the beginning. . p. There is no clear line between symptoms of brain disease and unconscious coping processes. (c) Defenses could be distinguished from each other. biography. (a) Defenses were a major means of managing impulse and affect. First. Future Research A major danger in using psychodynamic formulation as an explanatory concept in psychopathology remains unwarranted inference and subjective interpretation. pp.
integrating advances in cognitive psychology and evolutionary psychology with advances in our understanding of neural networks may offer still another potential means of studying defense mechanisms with greater scientific rigor. Phrenology and astrology fail to predict future behavior assessed by independent observers. Third. The demonstration of genetic influences upon defense choice will offer another advance that may make defenses more tangible. choice of defense mechanisms robustly predicts future behavior (Vaillant 1992).The second method is predictive validity. run in families. the increasing use of videotape to evaluate complex human process offers the same opportunity for reliability in assessing defense mechanisms (Perry and Cooper 1989). As techniques for brain imaging become perfected. In contrast. So does genetics. . In the future. for there is increasing evidence that personality disorders. Finally. there is a need to study defense choice cross-culturally and to clarify the social basis for defense choice and familial transmission. which are often characterized by a dominant mechanism of defense. functional magnetic nuclear resonance (FMNR) also offers promise.
Jagiellonian University in Krakow Tutor: Janusz Pałczyński.Defence Mechanisms The Modern Conceptualisation and Measurement MA Dissertation submitted in part fulfilment of the regulations for the degree of Master of Arts in Psychology.Não ficção Saúde e medicina Catálogos Documentos governamentais Guias/Manuais Como fazer Revistas e jornais Receitas/Menus Trabalho escolar + todas as categorias Apresentou Recente • • • Pessoas • • • • Autores Estudantes Pesquisadores Editores . PhD Scribd Carregar um documento Pesquisar l Parte superior do formulário Pesquisar Documentos Parte inferior do formulário Explorar Documentos • • • • • • • • • • Livros .Ficção Livros .
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The History 5 Sigmund Freud: Or Setting the Stage 5 Anna Freud and the Classical Approach to Defence Mechanisms 11 Subsequent Dynamic Approaches and the Changes in the Concept 13 Empirical Results and the Crisis of Concept 19 The Reasons for Resigning from Empirical Studies of Defences .Logon para adicionar um comentário Enviar 4gen Parte inferior do formulário Compartilhar e integrar Adicionar a Coleções Auto-hide: off Baixar este documento gratuitamente Konrad Banicki Defence Mechanisms The Modern Conceptualisation and Measurement MA Dissertation submitted in part fulfilment of the regulations for the degree of Master of Arts in Psychology. PhD – Kraków 2007 – -2- Contents PART I – THE CONCEPT Chapter 1 – Defence Mechanisms. Jagiellonian University in Krakow Tutor: Janusz Pałczyński.
The Review of the Methods 86 Self-report Techniques – the Rationale 87 Self-report Techniques – the Defense Mechanism Inventory 90 Self-report Techniques – the Life Style Index 96 Self-report Techniques – the Defense Style Questionnaire 101 Self-report Techniques – the Splitting Index .22 Chapter 2 – The Modern Revival of Defence Mechanisms 28 Cognitive Psychology 28 Developmental Psychology 30 Social Psychology 31 Clinical Psychology 32 What about the Personality Psychology? 35 Chapter 3 – Few Modern Conceptualisations of Defence Mechanisms 39 Introductory Remarks 39 Behavioural Approach to ‘Defence Mechanisms’ 41 Defence Mechanisms as Cognitive Processes 44 The Structural Model of Defence Mechanisms 46 Defence Mechanisms versus Coping Processes 50 Developmental Approach to the Study of Defences – the Basic Principles 64 Developmental Approach to the Study of Defences – the Empirical Results 70 Developmental Approach to the Study of Defences – the Conclusion 80 -3DSM-IV-TR: Or the Eclectic Approach 81 PART II – THE MEASUREMENT Chapter 4 – Defence Mechanisms Measurement.
2000). 2001). attempts to demonstrate the differences in the recognition thresholds for matched pairs of neutral and emotionally-toned stimuli. The Preliminary Polish Validation 144 Defense Mechanism Manual – the First Approximation 144 Defense Mechanism Manual – Hibbard’s Validation Studies 151 Defense Mechanism Manual – the Method of Preliminary Polish Validation 157 Defense Mechanism Manual – the Results of Preliminary Polish Validation 163 Defense Mechanism Manual – the Discussion of Preliminary Polish Validation 182 References 187 . Within the latter one it is possible to distinguish three main kinds of studies (Byrne.105 Self-report Techniques – the Others 110 Self-report Techniques – the Conclusion 117 Observational Techniques – the Introduction 121 Interview-based Techniques – the Review 123 Projective Techniques – the Rorschach-based Methods 131 Projective Techniques – the Specific Content-based Methods 136 Projective Techniques – the Short Conclusion 143 Chapter 5 – Defence Mechanism Manual.20 scientifically understood psychology. It could involve . First empirical studies – focused mainly on the manoeuvres of repression and projection – appeared in the 1930s (Cramer. 1961): 1. Researches into the defence of repression were mainly concentrated on the experiments on learning and memory as well as on the perceptual defence (Grzegołowska.Klarkowska.
the way of responding within a population range from the behaviours of avoiding type (e. The second group – sensitisers – are the opposite.laboratory paradigms trying to measure three main kinds of simple phenomena (Holmes. People that are more prone to react in the first way were called repressors – they have high perceptual threshold and thus the high tendency to perceptual defence and disruption. changes in recall associated with the introduction and elimination of the stress. 1996): a. differential recall of uncompleted and completed tasks. intellectualisation.g. Such a consistence could be. however. The inspiration of this current of studies was the basic observation that people differ in the way they react to the threatening stimulus and that their reactions can be placed on a specific continuum. denying. obsessional behaviours). 2. 3. Soon after the introduction of this dimension it appeared that many behavioural (and others) variables correlated with it in a meaningful way (for review see Byrne. differential recall of unpleasant and pleasant experiences. the investigation of the individual differences in responding to perceptual defence tasks and of the correlates of such differences. the data obtained in the first and second group of studies (for review see Grzegołowska-Klarkowska. efforts to explain (or often explain away) the data obtained in the above. in: Parker & Endler.21 by vigilance and threatening stimuli facilitation. Namely. found in the researches focused on so called repression-sensitisation dimension (for review see Byrne. They have low perceptual threshold and behave in a way that can be characterised . b. c. 1961). 1990. 1961). many more . The third kind of investigation. was a source of consistent and growing body of evidence.g. repressing) to those that are more approaching in character (e. 2001) should be regarded as controversial. The basic – definitional and paradigmatic – method to measure the place of a given individual on the repression-sensitisation continuum was the measurement of his/her perceptual thresholds. for example. However. According to Byrne (1961).
sophisticated and complex methods had been constructed. TAT. First of all. 8) that there “is no way to distinguish between individuals who actually have symptoms and do not report them (‘repressors. 1996). Weinberger. Schwartz. 1990.’ or more likely deniers) and individuals who do not have symptoms and therefore cannot report them (nonrepressors)”. nevertheless. Furthermore soon it had been noticed (Holmes. 1986. Parker & Endler. 25). 1996. Byrne judged that the way suggested by Ulman and Altrocchi was the most promising one and by making his own combination prepared new. cf. repression-sensitisation scale of the MMPI (RepressionSensitisation Scale. Some of them were based on the projective techniques (Rorschach. though sometimes considered as “psychometrically suspect” (Cooper & Kline.22 - . and . p. it appeared that the R-S scale correlated quite highly with the measures of anxiety and social desirability. his method. Byrne 1961. It led to the suggestion that it is primarily not a measure of the intended dimension but of undifferentiated anxiety. The crucial assumption of Byrne’s scale was that those who would not acknowledge having many symptoms could be described as repressors while the group that would do the opposite could be called sensitisers. some others referred to behavioural ratings. soon became very popular and widely used. 1998. Blacky Defense Preference Inventory. The measurement based on this assumption. Sentence Completion Task). p. Nishimura. Namely. the further history of the discipline proved that his prediction of the new scale’s potential was absolutely true. In 1958 Ulman (see Nishimura 1998) suggested that it might be useful to measure repression-sensitisation through Minnesota Multhiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI). resulted in many essential problems (Parker & Endler. Regardless the validity of his evaluation of the other repression-sensitisation measurement techniques. 1996). Two years later Altrocchi and colleagues (see Nishimura 1998) elaborated on this idea and proposed to combine MMPI scales. cited in: Parker & Endler.
Researches from the first and second group turned out to be much less conclusive and often controversial.Davidson (see Parker & Endler. they were very strongly criticised in terms of their logic and experimental design. 637) – among others – “by the end of 1970s the laboratory study of repression had virtually disappeared”. 1998) tried to solve these problems by a new operationalisation of repressors that referred to self-report scales of both anxiety and social desirability (defensiveness) (usually to Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale). Soon number of researches appeared that supported the construct validity of such procedure’s utilisation for repressive style measurement (for review see Weinberger. As is was noted by Cramer (2000. 1998). The same was the case of the second most popular current of experimental studies of defence mechanisms – the one of projection studying. 2000) concluded that there was no evidence for unconscious projection and explained previous results away by the reference to attribution processes as a more parsimonious explanation. It was proposed that repressors should be understood as those individuals who have low scores on anxiety scale together with high scores on social desirability scales. Weinberger. The Reasons for Resigning from Empirical Studies of Defences The history of first experimental investigations into defence mechanisms summarised . 2000). As a result in 1968 Holmes (see Cramer. 1996. These people who are placed low on anxiety dimension but who are at the same time low on social desirability dimension should be classified as real low-anxious (low symptoms) ones. The history of the Byrne’s Repression-Sensitisation Scale shows that experimental studies of repression has some potential for valuable and inspiring results. However when ones recalls three kinds of investigation into this defence distinguished by Byrne (1961) it should be emphasised that it was only the third one that had led to such promising data. Although some results in these fields had been obtained. p. These researches involved an examination of either an attribution of personal characteristic to ambiguous stimuli or an attribution of traits to self and others (self-other paradigm) (see Cramer.
. Freudian psychoanalysis (Cramer.23 – withdrawal that has been. 1148). Cramer. however. p. p. In the same manner Cramer (1998a. it doesn’t exist” (Cramer. In his commentary to a special issue of “Journal of Personality” devoted to the defence mechanism issues George Vaillant (1998. 1998a) and a complete ignorance about its more up to date versions. these are psychological attitudes of dominant current researchers that can account for at least part of reluctance to undertake defence mechanism issues.) out of fashion because they are tarred with the brush of psychoanalysis” (Vaillant.. invites expulsion from the community of academic researchers”. The failures of these studies. p. The first problem is the simple fact that defence mechanisms are “currently taboo (. These and similar psychological factors might be associated with ideology – religion and politics – rather than mere science (Vaillant. cf. are not strictly speaking one and the only reason why defences are neglected in the modern academic and experimental psychology. in the absence of some derisive qualifier. according to him. 1998a. lasting till today.above led to the withdrawal from all empirical researches into defence mechanisms . 882) position. are responsible for the relatively small number of researchers interested in them. If one reminds that neopositivism is not one and the only methodological position possible another reasons (dimensions) of such an aversion appears. 1998. Namely. Such attitudes involve general aversion towards psychoanalysis and psychoanalysis-derived approaches that is sometimes based on a misidentification of any dynamic view with and early. Such an attitude towards the notion of defences is partly due to the logical (neo-)positivism and learning theory inspired by it with their insistence on “if you can’t see it. in a bigger or smaller degree. 1998) and therefore . 1998a) enumerated some problems of empirical study of this subject matter which. 880) calls words such as “defence mechanisms” and “unconscious mental functioning” “taboo terms” by which she means “words that acquire such a strong negative valence that to utter them.
They concern the definitions of defence mechanisms which are “vague. that far as the problems are really substantive it is possible to at least attempt to cope with them by methodological consideration as well as by the demonstration of reliability and validity of studies in question (cf. 1149). For such reason it is very difficult to obtain accepted level of reliability in this area of investigation. As Vaillant (1998.24 The next problem of empirical studies of defences mentioned by Vaillant is undoubtedly more substantive and it concerns their reliability. However. 1998). Vaillant notices that “Everybody has a different name for defenses” . Such a shortcoming. In extreme cases it made the whole data obtained completely irrelevant for the defence mechanism study. overlapping and ambiguous” (Vaillant. 1148) observes that “in the past reliability in the study of defenses has been bought at the price of validity and clinical relevance”. does not seem to be the most reasonable and promising. however. thought reliable didn’t succeed in providing convergent validity.cannot be dealt with by a simple argumentation. in showing that they measure what they were intended to estimate. The techniques used. in many researches self-reports had been chosen – among other reasons – to gain acceptable reliability and they didn’t fail to come up to these expectations. Vaillant (1998. As soon as ideological issues are concerned it may be a good advice to just ignore them in content-related investigations. 1148) remarks: “Because defences rest in the eye of beholder.e. p. i. Further issues pointed out by Vaillant (1998) as relevant are more conceptual and formal in character. . however. their identification is subject to observer countertransference and projection” – this kind of biases may influence the evaluation of such definitional feature of defence mechanisms as the lack of voluntary and conscious decision (the difference from coping mechanisms) as well as the ‘measurement’ of their level of adaptive appropriateness. Vaillant. p. Namely. It can be probably quite well shown by the example of self-report measures of defence mechanisms. 1998. p.
p. however.(Vaillant. nonoverlapping nomenclatures for involuntary coping mechanisms” each used by “a distinguished investigator of stress” (see Vaillant. like that in which within 50 miles of San Francisco one can find “six competing. Such a constancy cannot be explained away by a purely environmental variables. This is for the reason that the very phenomenon of defence mechanism is equivocal. it always expresses itself through the individual and specific defensive behaviour. This feature of the defence mechanism study may be a good reason for claiming that it still stays in a pre-paradigmatic stage of its development. it is based on a relatively constant defensive organisation that makes a person prone to one group of defences (defensive behaviours) rather than to another. It should be emphasised that such a problem cannot be completely solved be a mere definitional clarity. 2000. On the other hand. Furthermore even if two researchers are investigating into two differently named processes (one of which doesn’t have to be . Such a diagnosis would imply a clear and urgent prescription for necessary steps to be undertaken. Such a situation has obvious consequences for the future development of defence processes theory because it simply hinders it. Furthermore also their measurement is often respectively ambiguous. p. On the one hand. 90). A particular example of conceptual confusion connected with analysis of defence mechanisms is the fact that they are defined in terms of both trait (stable personality trait of defensiveness) and state (individual defensive behaviour or dynamic process). every time it appears. The very fact that two researchers refer to the same name of defence doesn’t really mean that they are considering the same phenomenon and thus that their results are comparable. . It can lead and actually leads to ridiculous situations.25 named a defence) one cannot be sure whether they are not describing and explaining the same mechanism. 1149) and his remark should be strengthen by an additional information that everybody has also a different name for the very concept of defence mechanisms. 1998.
However. Firstly.When one arrives at the final problem enumerated by Vaillant (1998) it seems to be appropriate to classify it as the one of ‘last but not least’ kind.78 second one – more important – that psychological upset of an individual at the particular age correlates with the usage of defence mechanism predominant at this age. the crucial problem of consciousness and its measurement lies well behind the scope of this thesis. p. “if the study of defenses is problematic. Thus as often as Freud’s of adaptive . 166). Such a decision. 1150). in an attempt to reduce anxiety and maintain self-esteem. Vaillant (1998. would be both pitiful and unnecessary. previous research indicates that denial would be a prominent defense at this time. p. The classical solution offered in this matter by logical positivism is not very optimistic and although one does not have to confine himself to Vienna circle it would be a reliable step to at least refer to problems discussed by it in anything claiming to the title of comprehensive view of defence mechanisms. is theoretically reasonable but hadn’t been empirically studies yet. p. their greatest value is validity. these boys relied heavily on the defense of denial” (Cramer & Block. Namely. These two premises are the logical foundation of the following reasoning: “Although we do not have information on the boys' defense use during their preschool years. it cannot be passed over in silence and will emerge in many of more narrow issues discussed in the following chapters. The problems discussed by Vaillant may lead and often led to the complete resignation from the study of defence mechanisms. Unfortunately. 1150) notes that many researchers avoid the issues of defence mechanisms because they “raise the whole problem of ‘conscious’ versus ‘nonconscious’”. as Vaillant remarks (1998. It thus appears that. Only when the above is presumed to be true one may conclude that the results of study conducted by Cramer & Block (1998) support the thesis that . 1998. however. In the most extreme and consequent form it means nothing less than the problem of consciousness and the meaningful way of talking about it and verifying hypotheses concerning it.
p.. Because of the lack of consistent findings in case of females as well as a relative locality of this study it is still necessary to gain further evidence of a similar kind. However. the results already obtained seem to have proven that new efforts are worth making. greater continuity in male personality development (. 1998.79 predominant defence of denial such an ego functioning pattern begins to be fixed and may last till the adulthood. p. However. 1998. .those boys “subsequently continued to use this defense to reduce psychological distress” (Cramer & Block. painful affect. 1998.. 1998. In case of female participants the general hypothesis in a predicted form had gained only a “minimal support” (Cramer & Block. 166). or other negative conditions”. p. 166). Whatever the real reason is. conflict. female participants showed both withdrawal from their environment and involvement in fantasy activity rather than in real relationships” (Cramer & Block. 1998. p. the “exploration of nonpredicted relations” led the authors to the “tentative” (but stillpos t hoc) “suggestion that those female participants who rely on the defense of Denial as young adults presented an early personality picture that was coherent but different from that of the male participants. Nevertheless. The possible reasons for this may be: “greater male vulnerability to stressors. at the moment it cannot be treated as supportive of the original thesis. 166) – the psychological upset at age 3 or 4 years was only very modestly related with the use of denial at age 23 years. As preschoolers. 166). in case of males the study had confirmed the ‘Eriksonian’ character of defence mechanisms development. Such a suggestion seems to deserve some attention (an analysis).) and differences in boys' and girls' patterns of interaction with their social environment” (Cramer & Block. Cramer & Block. When the life conditions in the childhood are not good enough (“excessive stress. p. 167) and – as had been presumed – cause the overuse of . As a final conclusion of this research it may be said that it had supported the general hypothesis – that the childish overuse of denial carry on and persist in the adulthood – only in case of males.
Nevertheless. respectively) or early life antecedents of adult defensive functioning (Thienemann et al. The drawback of all of these studies was their cross-sectional setting. Thienemann et al. 1996 and Levit.. it should be emphasised that they are generally supportive of it. Another longitudinal study (Cramer & Block. by the Defense Mechanism Manual – at age of 23. One example of such a study – the research conducted by Cramer (1997) showed the theoretically expected change between predominance of denial and projection occurring between the ages of 6 and 9 years old. 1998) confirmed that in males the overuse of denial at age 3 or 4 years old – measured through the psychological upset scale – is positively correlated with such an overuse – measured directly. examples of such studies are: Nasserbakht et al. 1991) had not been discussed. 1991. 1996. Also few parts of the Defense Mechanism Manual validation studies confirmed that the hierarchy of denial. 2006). Chapter 4. Very fortunately. 1998) and Defense Mechanism Inventory (cf..The empirical results reviewed in the above subchapter are only a small sample of researches made to verify Phebe Cramer’s developmental theory of defence mechanisms (for much fuller review see Cramer. like the very popular Defense Style Questionnaire (cf. 1998). 1998). they . 1994) and defensive functioning of undergraduate students (Hibbard & Porcerelli. however. projection and identification is in a theoretically predictable way connected with psychopathology (Hibbard et al.. an example of such studies is: Levit.. However. It should be emphasised that the researches summed up above represent only those which had been based on the measurement with the Defense Mechanism Manual (cf. Chapter 5). They all contribute to the investigation into issues studied by Cramer like age and sex differences in the defence mechanisms utilisation (Nasserbakht et al. The early study in which Cramer (1987) showed a predicted pattern of defensive functioning for ages from 5 to 16 years old had been – in big part – replicated by Porcerelli and colleagues (1998). For the sake of theoretical and conceptual consistency the studies using other measures. Chapter 4. there are also some longitudinal studies which confirm implications of the developmental theory.
considering especially the differences between observation-based (including projective) and self-report-based methods will be presented in Chapter 4. when such an eclectism can be found is the definition of defence mechanism proposed by Cramer. it does all but ignore psychometric issues (cf. While delineating their specific features (differentia specifica) and function she refers to dynamic approaches (in its early and up to date form) as well as to social psychology. Cramer. The first place. Instead of this. 2006 and Chapter 5). guilt). According to first of them different defences become predominant . Although she understands them as “mental mechanisms” or even “cognitive operations” (genus proximum) she emphasises that they are unconscious. one should refer to the central notion of development. they can be referred to them only after a metatheoretical consideration of the relation between alternative measurement methods and concepts. Instead.. She says that defence mechanisms are directed against both internal (unacceptable thoughts and wishes) and external pressures. This kind of heterogeneously inspired definition cannot distinguish between the approach of Phebe Cramer and others clearly.80 cannot be treated as a direct verification of Phebe Cramer’s theses. As such they protect from the experience of excessive anxiety and other disruptive emotions (like e. Although its most often used method of measurement is projective. Although its theory is often based on the modern psychoanalytic writings it does not avoid referring to cognitive psychology and empirical studies.g. Out of at least few meanings of the concept of development applied to the study of defences there are two which are crucial for Cramer’s model. It is the one that can be definitional of this view of defensive functioning. They are expressed in so called “two basic tenets”. They protect an individual from the threats to the structure of the self and his self-esteem. A part of such a consideration. Developmental Approach to the Study of Defences – the Conclusion The developmental view of defence mechanisms which most mature and consequently developmental form has been proposed by Phebe Cramer is an approach that seems to be eclectic in its theoretical inspirations.
Some of them are crucial in the early childhood (denial). 2000) contains only a modest reference to defence mechanisms and nothing that can be called a theory of them it still deserves some attention here because of its importance for both practical and academic psychology. These outdated editions. there is a measurement method – the Defense Mechanism Manual that is both valid and reliable (cf.g. both made by Cramer and independent – that has been already gained is considerable. 2007). DSM-IV-TR: Or the Eclectic Approach Although the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” (APA. According to Cramer such a general pattern can be applied to all three main defences she studied – namely. It cannot be neglected that such an evidence is possible only because of the fact that there are measurable implications of the theory. starting from the neurophysiologic reflex as its predecessor. Chapter 5) – which conceptual consistency with Cramer’s theory makes it directly applicable for its verification. While presenting her model of defence mechanisms development Phebe Cramer put great emphasis on the empirical body of evidence supporting it. Cramer. While ageing such a reflex becomes voluntary and thereafter internalised (becoming a proper defence mechanism). projection and identification. It is for this reason that her theory can be called verifiable and – thus – scientific. appear to be . At the moment it can be said that the empirical confirmation of it – both cross-sectional and longitudinal. Subsequently it can become more and more cognitively complex. For sure. 2000.. the role of other is not big till the adolescence (identification). it makes the further researches and theoretical consideration worth undertaking. 1994. namely. Furthermore. 1998). Cramer. Before the most up to date edition of this classification will be discussed it may prove useful and interesting to review shortly its older versions (cf. some become important in the late (projection). The second “basic tenet” claims that for each of the defence mechanisms it is possible to find its “life history”. to denial. The number of researches conducted with the reference to developmental model of defence mechanisms is still increasing (cf. Vaillant. e.81 at different ages.
. at least few further steps forward. cited in Cramer. 1980) is concerned defence mechanisms had been planned to be included in it as a separate axis. psychotic . 1984. 807) divided into 7 Defense Levels which are – from the least to the most mature – level of defensive dysregulation (delusional projection. there was a hierarchically ordered Defensive Functioning Scale included as one of the Proposed Axes for Further Study. p. 1153) there was a glossary of defensive manoeuvres which was included in the DSM-III-R (APA. The defences in question were “conceptually and empirically” (APA. The definitions included in it had been validated consensually (Vaillant. As an addition to this scale there was a glossary of defence mechanisms. nevertheless. 1998. Namely. The meta-theoretical problem was that “defense mechanism implied unconscious etiology” (Vaillant. p. However such plans were abandoned for two kinds of reasons (apparently). 1994) was. Chapter 1). p. In comparison to this edition of the classification the DSM-IV (APA. 2000. 1153). The ratings on the Defensive Functioning Scale had been shown to be independent of those made on Axes I. 2000. 1987). The second reason for the resignation from the axis of defence mechanisms inclusion was more practical – “even psychoanalysts could not agree on their definitions” (Vaillant. As far as the DSM-III (APA. 1998. 2000). 7 years after. II and V (see Cramer. which was not only a theoretical element – on which atheoretical DSM is not that keen on – but also a questionable – at least then and at least for some – theoretical element. if not a giant leap. The same defence mechanism scale and the glossary were included in the most up-to-date version of the American Psychiatric Association classification. p. However – as George Vaillant (1994. 1994). 45) worded it – it was a “step forward”. p. as a result of the “interdisciplinary negotiation” (Vaillant. DSM-III-R was not a revolution. 641).82 a good example of defence mechanism concept and theory vicissitudes – of their exile and slow rediscovery (cf.
denial, psychotic distortion), action level (acting out, apathetic withdrawal, helprejecting complaining, passive aggression), major image-distorting level (autistic fantasy, projective identification, splitting of self-image or image of others), disavowal level (denial, projection, rationalisation), minor image-distorting level (devaluation, idealisation, omnipotence), mental inhibitions (compromise formation) level (displacement, dissociation, intellectualisation, isolation of - 128 repression, neurotic denial, grandiosity, turning against others, idealisation) representing mature, immature, neurotic, borderline and narcissistic levels of functioning (partly derived from DSM-III-R and Vaillant’s studies ) as well as the ego strength. For each of the scored defence mechanism the manual offers: a formal operational definition, case examples, a process to code, possible behaviours indicating presence/absence of defence, similar defence
mechanisms, and differentiating features. It is designed in such a way that an extensive clinical training should not be required. The interview being a base for the ratings should consist of a series of standardised questions (on academic and occupational interactions, expression of emotions, competitiveness, and interactions with others) posed in the interpersonally stressful structured interview (see Davidson & MacGregor, 1996). It usually takes approximately 15 minutes. The very process of making the ratings consist of the watching of the video-recorded interview (notes on defences and emotional conflict are made) and a subsequent rank-ordering of 25 defences based on the predefined (roughly normal) distribution. Each defence is represented by one card. Cards have to be sorted into 7 piles from least characteristic to most characteristic in such a way to obtain the piles of: 1, 2, 5, 9, 5, 2, and 1 cards. In an effect of such forced choice ordering the distribution as close to normal as possible is obtained. Apart from the individual defence scores the Defense-Q involves the 3item scale to access the ego strength. Items on the subjects such as typical effectiveness, typical need for defences, and typical defensive activation are scored on a 7-point Likert scale from 1 (poor/low) to 7 (good/high). The single
index of ego strength calculated by simple summing ranges then from 3 to 21. Internal consistency of this scale (Davidson & MacGregor, 1996) ranges from . 71 to .89. Q-sort methodology used in the Defense-Q is not only characteristic to this instrument but also rich in – theoretical and practical – consequences (Davidson & MacGregor, 1996). Its advantages involve some kind of personfocus – actually, it “compares an individual to himself or herself” (Davidson & MacGregor, 1996, p. 631). In such a way it may preserve subtle and unique qualities of individuals and, thus, seems to be good for accessing complex phenomena such as defence manoeuvres. Furthermore, it allows relatively untrained individuals to make ratings and – due to the predetermined number of defences in each pile – - 129 is relatively less dependent of the rater (see Davidson & MacGregor, 1996). However, there is also a serious disadvantage of this kind of measurement. Namely, the scores obtained are ipsative and there is no possibility of referring them to any normative data. They may also require a special statistic procedures to be conducted. The basic data on the psychometric properties of the Defense-Q can be found in the original study of Davidson and MacGregor (1996, p. 637) which was based on a sample of 30 “relatively psychologically healthy individuals” (15 females). All of these subjects undergone an interpersonally stressful interview (cf. above) with one men interviewer and were then independently rated by 11 trained coders (women undergraduate students) for their use of 25 defence mechanisms and the ego strength. The Cronbach coefficients alpha for individual defences ranged from .28 (undoing) to .92 (humour), with an average of .73. 88% of defences had reliability bigger than .50, 64% of them were more reliable than .75, and only 5 defences (dissociation, splitting, identification, psychotic denial, undoing) had coefficients alpha smaller than .60. As the authors suggest these lowest
estimates could have been either due to the restricted use of the defences in question in the studied sample or/and difficulties of measuring them. Apart from the standard reliability estimates for the individual defence scores Davidson and MacGregor calculated also an averaged coder reliability (across all defence mechanisms) for each participant which ranged from .55 to . 77 with an average of .69 – “no one participant was anomalous or difficult to code” (Davidson & MacGregor, 1996, p. 636) – and a coder reliability (across all participants and across all defence mechanisms) which ranged from .63 to .73 with an average of .69. These two results showed that the Defense-Q can be applied to a relatively heterogeneous sample and that it can be used by relatively untrained coders8. These reliability concerning results may be supported by those estimating the construct validity (see Perry & Ianni, 1998). Namely, after an introduction of the Psychological Health Similarity score – being a correlation of actual scores with an ideal model of psychological functioning (based on Vaillant) – there was some evidence of
The former conclusion is somewhat confined for the reason that all coders used here were females (Davidson & MacGregor, 1996).
- 130 construct validity obtained. The PHS correlated negatively with level of selfreported hostility and depression, friend-rated hostility, resting systolic blood pressure, and positively with level of observer-rated ego strength,
supportiveness and job competency. Furthermore there has been found a positive correlation of profiles scored by raters and by therapists (concurrent validity). The convergent validity with other measures of defences has not been estimated yet (Perry & Ianni, 1998). Q-sort by Roston, Lee, and Vaillant. Apart from the method reviewed above there is also a Q-sort rating system developed by Roston, Lee, and Vaillant, (1992, cf. Perry & Ianni 1998). It consists of 51 statements representing 15 defences (3-6 cards per defence) designed in a way to eliminate rater bias while being able to use less experienced raters. While rating is made each of
respectively. The least agreement is attained for the neurotic defences . or . Similarly to the situation with the Defense-Q there are some studies showing the concurrent and construct validity of the Q-sort of Roston. Namely.73 and has a median of . It shows then that the clinician rating process is more reliable.131 the lowest estimates had been gained for the neurotic defences. the fact that these coefficients increased to . in: Perry & Ianni. Lee. Once again.57. A reliabilities of the overall maturity score are .83 (between two clinicians) (see Perry & Ianni. A similar scale can be used for the assessment of the overall maturity score which is calculated by a weightening of defences based on whether they are mature. The piles are ordered from most to least characteristic in a defensive functioning and have a predetermined numbers of statements. An interrater reliability for individual defences ranges from . neurotic or immature (neurotic ones are omitted from the calculation). . may show that more training than intended is required.55. Also the overall maturity score showed a significant correlations with measures of global functioning such as GAS and HSRC (it was .10 to . It is done by a calculation of a mean rank of cards connected with the respective defence mechanism. 1998). such a forced choice gives – roughly – normal distribution together with advantages and disadvantages of Q-sort methodology scrutinised above.65 in case of inner-city boys’ one).82 and .these statements should be attributed to one of 9 distinct piles. It gives the ipsative (not normative) scale ranging from 1 to 9. 83 (between a Q-sorter and a clinician).56 in case of gifted girls’ sample and . 1998). However. After the 51 cards have been attached to the 9 piles it is possible to rank order 15 defences measured. and Vaillant (1992.72.82 with a median of . 41.64 (between two Q-sorters). Projective Techniques – the Rorschach-based Methods . when defences where rated by clinicians. It should be emphasised that once again .05 to . the concurrent validity (estimated be a comparison with clinical ratings) ranged from .93 and .
1998). Perry & Ianni. Perry & Ianni. Perry. Perry and Ianni (1998. & Arnow. developed a complex manual for the . Their criteria were based on response . Perry. and displacement. and numerous determinant ratios. in turn. Unfortunately. Copper. This coding system was able to detect differences between parents of good and bad premorbid schizophrenics. 1988. but not between these two groups and neurotic patients’ parents group. 1998) showed few relations to clinical measures of coping and defence. Copper. for example. cf. and Hooks (1963. The first system of the formal ratings developed by Haan (1964. p.132 dynamics. characteristic imagery. Perry. Two years later Bahnson and Bahnson (1966. Perry & Ianni. 1998). Perry. As the authors of one of these methods notice there are 3 general strategies of using Rorschach to measure defence mechanisms – formal Rorschach scoring. test-taking attitudes. 1998). Copper. isolation. 995) conclude as follows: “In general. & Arnow. & Arnow. cf.The first group of projective techniques that will be review here is based on a set of ambiguous stimuli delivered by Rorschach (for fuller review see: Cooper. 1988. Perry. 189) into the scoring criteria. Perry & Arnow. Perry. Perry & Ianni. & Arnow. Perry. Becker. cf. and some mixture of these both (Copper. cf. 1988. it was achieved only after the post hoc inclusion of “phenomenology of the Rorschach situation” (Cooper. 1988. 1998). 1988. 1988. Baxter. However. 1988. prepared a set of criteria for scoring 5 defence mechanisms such as: denial. analysis of thematic content. The second possible strategy is based on the analysis of thematic content and is usually based on the theoretical work of Schafer (see Copper. Perry & Ianni. exclusive reliance on formal scores has proven disappointing”. Perry. & Arnow. Levine and Spivack (1964. 1998). Copper. Perry & Ianni. & Arnow. 1988. projection. it is not possible to draw any definite conclusions about its usefulness due to the inappropriate control groups’ selection (Copper. 1998) suggested 16-item index of repression including card rejections. undoing. & Arnow. p. and card rejections. & Arnow. 1988). cf. Perry & Ianni. long reaction times.
poor integrative effort. Perry. Blinder and Schimek (see Copper. . assessed repression and isolation as defensive counterparts of cognitive styles of levelling and sharpening. Luborsky. The limitations of the exclusive reliance on either the formal or the content analysis led the researchers to the idea of using both of them together. rationalisation) and non-classical (e. negation. Linton. & Arnow.g. and little variety of content as indicative of repression. projection) in schizophrenics. It was suggested. Perry & Ianni. The third system based on the content analysis was developed by Holt (1969. & Arnow. A very early system of Gardner. cf. isolation. however. Copper. Perry & Ianni. normals. The next rating method was proposed by Bellak. projection. and Spence (1959. Perry. It involved definitions of some of the classical (e. that its validity can be lowered by the extensive focus on the verbal expressive style that may be affected not only by defences but also by intellectual ability.g. 1988). cf.g. Copper. Perry. 1988. and guardedness (see Copper.assessment of repressive defence styles. 1998) found relationships between isolation and venturing to look around more (as measured by eye fixation) as well as between repression and tendency to look around less. for example. 1988. neurotics and. However. & Arnow. e. cf. Holzman. Apart from the formal scores it was based on very general content variables. 1998) and consisted of global criteria to study ego functioning (repression. 1998) as a part of a primary process thinking assessment. 1988. Klein. & Arnow. low motivation. Hurvich and Gediman (1973. Perry. minimisation and repuditation) defences as well as an important category of defence effectiveness. Perry. depression. Perry & Ianni. 1998). it must be emphasised that criteria used by these authors were not objectively given but based on the intuitive judgements of highly experienced Rorschach clinicians. & Arnow. This system led to some interesting findings such as relations between perceptual styles and defences. childlike material.133 - . 1988. Perry & Ianni. Copper. isolation.
It also has some important differentiating properties. 1988). cf. 1998) to an idea of a new method developing. it may differentiate between borderline patients and neurotic ones (see Cooper. 2 1-year .94 to . schizophrenics. Copper. 1998). 1988. thus. & Arnow. and those diagnosed on cluster C of personality disorders (see Perry & Ianni. The measures based on the exclusive reference to the formal qualities have low validity and concern more cognitive style than defensive functioning. Perry and Arnow (1988. cf. 1998). To sum up. antisocial PD. Perry. The interrater reliability of the LDS is very high and ranges from . Cooper. paranoid schizophrenics.g. Furthermore it is not certain what should be their basic unit of analysis – all responses or only human ones.The scoring system that was more systematic in that matter was the Lerner Defense Scales (LDS. and neurotics) and using 4 blind to diagnosis raters (2 experienced Rorschach clinicians. The review of the Rorschach-based scoring methods made by Cooper. It consists of a manual to access 5 defence mechanisms related to borderline personality organisation.99 for individual defences (see: Perry & Ianni. The above conclusions led Cooper. The fact that it is based on only human responses can be a problem for those individual who have few human responses. it may be said that results are generally consistent with personality disorders theory and. and Arnow (1988) and repeated in a big part by Perry and Ianni (1998) led them to the following conclusion. Perry and Arnow (1988) emphasise also the need of keeping a balance between objective-subjective methodology and assessing more than a narrow range of defences. For example. After the initial reliability study conducted on a sample of 50 individuals from wide range of diagnostic groups (borderline PD. Perry & Ianni. Perry. for schizophrenics. supportive of the construct validity of the LDS. 1975) in the context of Rorschach. bipolar Type II affective disorder. e. & Arnow. Lerner & Lerner. Perry. Rorschach Defense Scales. The techniques of content analysis only are connected with the dangers of focusing on the verbal material9. 1980. 1998) being an attempt to use modern dynamic object relations theory (Kernberg. Perry & Ianni.
163 Defense Mechanism Manual – the Results of Preliminary Polish Validation Descriptive Statistics The analysis of the reliability and validity data concerning the DMM should not be started before the inspection of the most basic descriptive statistics is done. primitive idealisation. Its manual includes 15 defences from the range of psychotic (massive denial and hypomanic denial). the Defense Mechanism Manual (Chapter 5). 9 Cf. Such statistics are provided in Table 4.graduate students in clinical psychology) the Rorschach Defense Scales (RDS) was developed. . TABLE 4 . borderline (splitting. devaluation.
00 PRO 7.78 27.00 16.37 1.00 44.00 60.35 19.99 1.33 18.00 24.00 OVR 27.64 .17 50.81 -.65 5.77 5.00 DENL .00 9.00 Multiple 5.Descriptive Statistics for the DMM Scales M Mdn Mode SD Kurtosis Skew Min Max Range DEN 11.22 4.14 -.00 24.92 -.36 7.64 33.70 1.67 72.00 22.00 DENO 43.32 10.00 28.01 0 24.00 56.40 -.83 IDEO 31.20 .00 Multiple 6.71 .33 11.26 0 60.48 1.52 PROO 24.15 91.87 -.98 1.00 11.00 17.00 27.14 12.68 24.15 38.27 33.66 35.00 Multiple 5.99 1.00 40.00 45.00 IDE 9.
04 -.95 2.38 6.21 Multiple 2.70 Multiple 1.78 IDEL 1.63 1.84 1.49 Multiple 5.78 -.60 .27 0 3.54 4.25 1.61 1.2.56 7.72 .97 24.63 .83 3.57 .82 Multiple 1.57 1.18 PROR 4.94 1.25 4.56 9.83 OVRL 4.17 2.85 5.97 4.74 .02 2.15 22.82 DENR 8.84 4.10 Multiple .01 4.53 1.47 .42 .09 1.69 PROL 1.37 4.19 1.53 -.
50 -.755 35.06 Multiple 6.55 Multiple 4.56 8.18 1. The first thing worth considering here is the distribution of the variables within four possible scoring procedures.04 .43 21. N = 25.37 0 21.43 OVRR 19.71 9.34 5.71 3. What is especially important is its normality which is an assumption of .93 IDER 6.9.45 17.96 Note.71 25.
04 PRO .92 . Although the Monte Carlo experiments have shown that the violation of this assumption is not that serious in terms of its consequences (biases and errors obtained) as it had been previously thought it still seems to be a reliable practice to try to avoid it.83 .. TABLE 5 Shapiro-Wilk W Test for the DMM Scales Shapiro-Wilk W P DEN .164 most common statistic procedures that one may want to employ (so called parametric statistics).
Relative to Length Denial (DENL) and Overall (OVRL).95 .03 OVR .23 IDEO .01 DENO .87 .0002 PROR .95 .08 The first inspection of skewness and kurtosis shows that the variables such as Absolute Projection (PRO). Relative to Overall Denial (DENO). Identification (IDE) and Overall (OVR).08 DENR .93 .21 IDEL .90 .96 .79 . To verify such a hypothesis Shapiro-Wilk W tests of normalities were conducted which results are showed in .02 OVRR .48 DENL ..89 .004 PROO .34 IDER .002 PROL .0006 IDE .44 OVRL .96 .86 .91 . and Relative to Both Denial (DENR) and Identification (IDER) may not have a normal distribution.93 .96 .
Overall scores Relative to Length (OVRL) and Relative to Both (OVRR) are borderline cases.. IDE. on the other hand.165 Table 5. Card 8BM has the highest load on denial scale in all four cases which is also a case of Card 3BM being the second. . DENR. It will enable to make a direct comparisons between four alternative scoring systems. The inspection of the W significance illustrated that not only are all variables enumerated above (PRO. DENO. After the descriptive statistics of main variables and the normality issues have been discussed one my turn to the scores obtained on the particular TAT cards – the scores which are an equivalent of individual item’s scores in the conventional questionnaires (cf. The above results concerning the normality of distribution led to the conclusion that in case of the Absolute scores and scores Relative to Both overall score and the length the parametric statistics should be replaced by the non-parametric ones. OVR. and IDER) but also that absolute denial (DEN) are not normally distributed. In case of variables Relative to either Overall score or the Length parametric statistics seemed to be appropriate (denial scores – DENO and DENL – had been treated liberally). Namely. Card 6GF. The first amount of data concerns denial and is showed in Table 6. 1994). had the lowest score on denial in all four of its operationalisations. The presentation of means (item difficulties) and standard deviations will be ordered by the main defence mechanisms distinguished by Cramer. Hibbard et al. DENL. The first thing that should be noticed is the fact that all 4 scoring systems yielded almost equivocal distribution of ‘item difficulty’ across all 12 cards..
60 .166 TABLE 6 Mean DMM Denial Scores on 12 TAT Cards Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length Relative to both Card M SD M SD M SD M SD 1 .08 .11 3..82 2.
42 3GF .10 .85 3..41 .80 6.68 .11 .60 6GF .27 2.80 .15 .11 .25 3.54 2.59 .94 5.64 3BM 1.27 .24 .24 1.13 .48 8GF .26 1.24 .84 .08 .03 2.05 .42 .12 1.51 .15 .54 6BM .28 .31 .49 4.76 2.64 .69 2 1.68 .58 .15 .28 .43 1.
83 3.36 .96 2.52 13MF .88 1.42 .77 1.11 .84 1.41 .91 3.12 5.16 .82 1.80 6.60 .28 1.14 .69 .59 1.67 1.06 15 .56 1.14 .63 8BM 2.39 3.45 .15 .00 .76 2.55 10 .15 4.18 .44 .46 .29 18GF .42 2.15 .58 9.25 .07 .62 .80 .31 ..76 .
20 . namely.32 5. depicts the scene of an operation and involves items such as – not highly apparent – gun and knife. The similar situation may be found in case of Card 3BM (which has the highest score in the study of Hibbard and colleagues.48 2.15 18.14 43. on the other hand. Card 6GF (young woman and older man).25 As far as the Card 8BM is concerned such a result should not be a surprising one for the reason of threatening picture content and DMM manual’s instruction concerning it. If the author of the story evoked by this picture does not mention them (or any of two main characters present) he is scored Denial which should make a high mean score obtained understandable. may not seem that threatening and contains only 2 objects (man and woman) which should be .83 Sum 11.61 .56 5..01 8. This drawing. 1994) showing a gun or a knife which is not that easy to be noticed but which is necessary to be mentioned in order to avoid being scored for Denial.08 1.
The fact of its lowest score is one again a replication of Hibbard and team (1994) results. TABLE 7 Mean DMM Projection Scores on 12 TAT Cards Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length Relative to both Card M SD M SD M SD M . The second defence that should be studied in terms of its ‘item difficulty’ is projection which detailed descriptive statistics are showed in Table 7..167 mentioned according to the DMM manual.
64 3.60 .48 .77 6GF .75 .38 1.96 .081 .04 .60 2 .191 .40 3.12 1.04 .94 2.76 2.181 .49 6BM .15 3GF 1.23 .29 .48 .23 .64 3.92 1.121 .07 2.24 .46 .200 .SD 1 .020 .82 .070 .20 .66 .056 .51 2.68 1.68 3BM .131 .57 .52 .136 .
079 .53 10 .140 .25 .073 .40 1.41 .56 1.095 .71 6.51 .44 .54 .254 .15 5.138 .034 .29 .30 8BM .024 .45 8GF .127 .2.18 .80 1.01 1.29 .00 2.33 .20 .12 .170 .73 3.09 .232 1.09 .069 .23 .29 5.44 1.82 2.21 13MF .98 .68 15 1.33 .09 .
81 1. In case of all of them Card 15 and Card 3GF – in such order – obtained the highest projection scores.174 .08 1.37 2.22 3.18GF 1.193 .64 Sum 7. In case of all relative scoring systems Card 2 obtained the lowest projection score which was the case of Card 8GF for absolute scores.77 24.247 .776 4.59 .37 5.57 .78 11.53 The results are once again very consistent across 4 possible coding systems. The second high score for Card 3 GF (being . The highest projection score for Card 15 depicting a man in a graveyard is understandable because of its direct content and death themes evoked by it (every mentioning of death in a story is scored for Denial).45 3.
Cards 2 and 8GF – respectively – shows countryside scene and a young woman in such a way that is usually interpreted as neutral or positive (in case of Card 2 even very positive). Namely.168 a replication of Hibbard’s team study) may be not that easy to be explained but is still comprehensible.. shows descriptive data for the identification which is the last individual defence score in the DMM. Table 8. the picture of young woman with a head looking down could suggest (and actually suggests) her sadness which may be – quite directly – caused by somebody’s death scored as a projection. It is for this reason that their Projection scores are not that high. in turn. TABLE 8 Mean DMM Identification Scores on 12 TAT Cards Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length .
33 3BM .116 .94 2 1.14 3.28 .231 .82 .95 2.68 .228 .88 .55 4.64 .Relative to both Card M SD M SD M SD M SD 1 1.76 .76 .65 1.44 .41 .20 1.197 .099 .14 .89 3GF .17 4.29 4.045 .41 4.28 1.79 .201 .69 6GF .240 .80 1.15 .05 .
72 8GF .083 .76 1.68 6BM .87 4.37 .63 .101 .10 3.51 .193 .26 .2.12 1.14 2.48 3.123 .269 .204 .18 8BM .48 .265 .15 .03 10 1.201 .84 1.99 .44 .77 .86 .47 1.96 5.51 .86 1.206 1.00 13MF .139 .99 3.69 4.183 .60 3.144 .34 .96 1.05 2.77 1.
Such themes are subsequently scored as Identification. the man in a graveyard – . Another unanimous result concerned the fact of Card 15 being the lowest on the identification scale.71 . in turn. shows a boy with a violin which very often evokes themes of learning to play the latter and generally striving for life aims.66 16.05 1. – not involved in Hibbard’s study – shows a woman with her head on man’s shoulder which might have easily provoked stories involving affiliation elements which are also coded as Identification.53 1.039 6.50 .063 .62 .00 6.92 1.48 1.026 .632 1.39 2.07 .44 Sum 9. 1994) is very easily understandable because of its content. namely. The picture. On the other hand.169 Once again all four coding procedures were consistent – they yielded Card 10 as the highest in identification score and Card 1 as the second one in row.18 18GF .27 .34 4.15 . Card 10.21 31.075 .148 .23 .20 . The high identification as measured by Card 1 (also showed in validation by Hibbard and team.
respectively). Namely. Relative to Overall (p < .04). 3 kinds of relative) the significance of differences between all possible cards pairs were measured (66 comparisons per scale per scoring system). In case of the most mature defence of identification there were no strong results for scales evaluated by non-parametric sign test. Card 8GF having the smallest Absolute score was . p < . above) rather than stories on love and friendship. Namely. The same was the case of Card 3BM significantly higher than all cards apart from Cards 8BM and 2 (p < .03. 02. or Relative to Both one (p < .01.02.01. p < . and identification as measured by different cards.03.04.01. In order to evaluate an importance of such a fact the following procedure had been conducted.01.02). to Length. In case of scores Relative to either Overall score or to the Length t tests were computed. p < . p < . Namely. Relative to Overall. p < .02). Card 10 – the .Card 15 – probably evoked death themes (hence projection. and to Both of them (p < . projection. p < . Projection. As far as projection is concerned the highest Card 15 was significantly higher than only 9 (Relative to Length score. p < .04). Card 8BM was not only the highest in terms of denial but also higher than any other card as measured by whatever Absolute system (p < . All cards that turned out to be significantly different from more than 8 of the other cards will be mentioned in the following passage.170 significantly smaller (p < . Relative to Length (p < . respectively).03.03).04) or 7 cards (Absolute. and Identification) and for each of the scoring systems (Absolute. respectively) than only 7 other cards.03.02.05) than only 6 cards which was also the case of Card 2 having the smallest scores Relative to Overall. cf. p < . p < . Card 6GF while being the smallest on denial was significantly smaller (p < .03. Relative to Both. Table 6. for each of the individual scale (Denial. 7 and 8 showed that there were quite big and apparent differences between denial. p < . p < . p < . In case of Absolute scale and the one Relative to Both overall score and length it was replaced by the non-parametric sign test.
at last.03) or 6 cards (Relative to Both score. p < . Projection. p < .highest on identification – was significantly higher than only 7 (Absolute score. and Identification.03 for both Absolute and Relative to Both score). Card 1 was significantly higher (p < . Psychometric considerations As soon as the most elementary descriptive statistics of the DMM has been done the reliability of this measure can be estimated.04) other cards. differed significantly from only 6 other cards (p < . was significantly lower than only 7 cards (p < . The results of t test were a little bit more apparent.04 for Relative to Length). The lowest Card 15. Card 15. p < . Namely. The results concerning Denial are shown in Table 9. p < . These correlations are depicted in Tables 9. 10.04) than 8 cards but only when measured as Relative to Overall score. It may suggest than the Absolute and Relative to Length scales of denial are relatively clear (independent) variables. There were some significant negative correlations with Identification and Projection but only in case of scores Relative to Overall and Relative to Both. p < . The nextimportantissueisthefactthat . on the other hand. each measured by the utilisation of 4 possible coding procedures. Such an estimation may be started from a consideration of item-total correlations for the scales of 4 different scoring systems.03). 02 for Relative to Overall. and 11 and had been computed for twelve 12-item tests involving Denial. In addition to this data the correlations between items and Overall scores – apart from the Relative to Overall coding system which does not yield such a variable – had been calculated.04) or 8 (Relative to Length. Card 10 was significantly higher than 9 (Relative to Overall score. The first thing that should be underlined is the fact that there were no items – in whatever scoring system – that correlated significantly and positively with a scale inappropriate for it.
. The scoring system Relative to Length turned out to be the most reliable (7 significant correlations with mean r = . Generally. it can be said that only about a half of items (23 out 48) correlated significantly with their theoretically expected total scale and that strengths of these correlations were moderate. TABLE 9 Item-total Correlations for the DMM Denial Scales Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length Relative to both D I O I P D P .51).61). whereas the one Relative to Both the least reliable (5 significant correlations with mean R = .171 coding systems differed between each other in terms of the number of significant item-total correlations and their strength.
26 .16 -.07 .28 0.09 .03 .28 .31 .11 -.25 .28 .27 -.05 .25 .20 .06 3BM 6GF .36 -.19 .34 .26 -.02 -.60* .27 .13 .02 .15 .23 .08 .24 -.04 2 .59* .06 -.13 .52* .21 -.65* 3GF .10 .42* .49* .28 .16 .50* .59* -.06 .D I O I O 1 P D P .17 .19 .20 .31 -.05 .41* .04 .12 .42* .13 .24 -.12 -.38 .58* .42* -.05 -.18 -.64* .
3 5 .26 -.64* -.00 -.06 .43* .21 -.66* .16 .42* .20 -.05 .25 .13 .51* -.35 13MF.32 .45* -.36 -.35 .68* .50* .01 .32 .51* -.-.31 6BM .44* .47* -.13 .71* -.21 .16 -.34 -.49* .12 .21 .28 -.32 .19 .15 .26 .01 -.02 8GF .13 -.06 .61* -.28 .12 -.26 .11 8BM .15 -.29 .75* .16 .05 -.08 .16 10 .39 -.04 .22 -.56* .04 .07 -.16 -.35 .10 .08 -.60* -.58* .41* .30 .02 -.35 -.03 .
60* -.74* -.33 -.02 .51.09 . the projection measured on the card 18GF by the Absolute scoring system quite strongly correlates with Absolute Identification score (r = .36 . Table 10.14 . depicts item-total correlations of Projection tests’ items.41* . * p < . Namely. P = Projection.10 .27 -.20 .16 . in turn.05).20 .45* -. In opposition to the scale discussed previously.14 .35 -.21 -.33 -.3 2 Note.13 15 .15 .-.43* -.49* -.45* .04 .35 .62* -.11 .22 -. I = Identification.30 . Onemayrememberthat it the .34 .08 -.50* -.05 -.42* . p < .21 18GF. O = Overall. Pearson product-moment correlation r or non-parametric Spearman rank R used.63* -.30 -. N = 25.32 -.00 .07 -. D = Denial. it should be noticed that there is one positive and significant correlation between the projection-item and otherdefence-scale.06 -.09 .33 -.05.
p < . This result.172 study of Hibbard’s team (1994) Projection assessed with Card 3BM had significantly and positively correlated with Denial (cf. above).05) scoring systems.05) and Relative to Both (r = . TABLE 10 Item-total Correlations for the DMM Projection Scales Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length Relative to both D I O I D I P D P P .49. When it was coded as Absolute or Relative to Overall it didn’t yield any significant correlations..50. namely. Card 3BM. p < . turned out to be a good Projection item for Relative to Length (r = . was not replicated in this study. however.
14 .19 .23 -.27 .09 .08 .25 -.43* -.34 .32 -.08 -.43* -.08 .62* .17 .13 .19 -.O I O 1 .06 .45* 3GF .04 .38 -.10 .11 .15 .07 .14 -.39 -.17 .51* -.07 .31 .06 .32 .29 .07 .63* -.17 .32 .26 -.35 .05 -.22 .50* .20 .32 3BM 6GF .25 -.10 -.34 .07 -.41* -.23 -.14 .01 .06 .11 -.71* .32 .05 .13 -.03 .49* .35 -.34 D P 2 .52* -.
11 .02 .15 .08 .05 .21 .04 -.51* .27 -.04 .22 .12 .12 .51* .07 .36 .03 -.38 -.14 -.18 .07 .02 10 .34 -.09 .13 .05 -.15 .03 .46* -.16 .40* .33 -.19 .07 .23 -.24 .31 .12 8GF 8BM .-.17 .21 -.08 -.14 .34 -.38 .25 .15 .21 -.17 .24 .37 -.11 -.42* -.26 -.46* 6BM .31 .23 .13 .39 .41* -.19 .26 .05 .31 .08 .15 -.55* .17 .12 -.20 .03 -.
I = Identification.18 .23 .36 .14 -.34 -.34 .51* . but – also again – it was only in case of Relative to Overall (1 correlation) and Relative to Both (3 correlations) scales.41* . O = Overall.30 . As far as the differences between the coding systems are concerned the Absolute scores seemed to be the most reliable (6 significant correlations with mean R = .14 .13 .05 .13 Note.40* .10 .15 13MF-.24 18GF.25 . N = 25.64* .58) and the Relative to Both one was .57* . * p < .04 .48 .39 . D = Denial.18 -.0 2 .1 2 .05.45* .22 . Pearson product-moment correlation r or non-parametric Spearman rank R used.67* .57* .21 .18 .19 .49* .38 -.50* .61* -.07 .26 .43* . P = Projection.38 -. Going further it may be said that – like in the case of Denial – there were some negative and significant correlations with not appropriate scale.36 -.-.21 -.00 15 .10 -.29 -.
The item-total correlations of four alternative Identification tests are illustrated in Table 11. In sum.173 – once again – the weakest. TABLE 11 Item-total Correlations for the DMM Identification Scales Absolute Relative to overall Relative to length Relative to both D I O I D I O I P D P D P P . item-total correlations are even a bit weaker than in case of Denial and not that numerous (20 out of 48 expected correlations found)..
23 .40 .01 .04 .24 .51* .45* -.37 -.36 -.26 -.15 .01 .26 .20 -.11 6GF .39 -.O 1 .17 .38 .50* -.26 -.08 .20 .52* .11 3GF .20 .31 .13 -.43* .33 -.17 -.33 .00 .08 .14 .07 .32 -.30 .03 .49* -.62* .53* .49* .24 .20 .49* .15 .25 .15 .39 -.49* -.22 .37 -.08 .11 .11 -.10 2 -.18 .05 -.04 -.11 3BM .27 .42* -.00 .24 -.50* -.17 .40* -.32 .11 .
22 .01 .17 -.04 .20 .48* -.50* .17 .02 -.44* -.09 .23 .07 13MF.38 .23 -.02 -.41* .43* -.03 -.69* .05 .59* .57* .21 10 -.40* .41* -.27 .45* .43* 8BM -.30 -.59* .55* .27 .33 .12 .30 .62* .07 .22 .15 8GF -.55* -.34 ..11 -.11 -.03 -.26 .42* .60* -.08 6BM .04 -.26 .42* -.42* .55* .35 -.39 .70* .1 7 .21 .02 .52* -.45* .03 -.11 .41* .06 .25 .38 .19 .16 .13 .16 -.
24 -.01 18GF-. Card 3GF that had been found by Hibbard and colleagues as correlating positively with Denial did not yield any significant correlation here.25 .24 -.45* -.03 . 15) that correlated positively with Absolute Projection and one Relative to Length Identification item (3BM) correlating positively also with Projection.02 -. If one .67* .174 - .10 ..12 .09 .44* .50* -. As far as negative and significant correlations between items and different scales are concerned there were some of them found. N = 25.38 . P = Projection.00 -. there were 3 Absolute Identification items (3BM.32 .09 .12 -.05.28 -.33 -.21 .39 .44* -.23 .10 15 .43* . Namely. * p < . This time there were four significant and positive correlations that are theoretically unexpected and psychometrically inappropriate.07 -.13 .17 . 13MF.43* .22 .26 -. Pearson product-moment correlation r or non-parametric Spearman rank R used.1 4 Note. O = Overall.51* .27 -. D = Denial.31 .26 . I = Identification.41* . The biggest number of such correlations – namely six – was found in Relative to Overall Identification test.19 .
α = . The Relative to Overall scoring procedures turned out to have the smallestα coefficients here (Denialα = .63. namely.77) were the most internally consistent ones.α = .40. and Identificationα = .28). .α = .α = .57) and Relative to Both (α = . This evaluation. however. α = . Identification (α = . MoSW+) derived from only those correlations that were significant.64). The respective scales for Relative to Length (α = . NoSW+. and 11 should now be concluded in terms of the four alternative scoring systems reliabilities (internal consistencies).54).72). respectively) and Relative to Both the worst (5 significant positive correlations with mean R = . As such it does not take into account about a half of relations depicted in the above table. MoS. The results shown in Tables 9. Projectionα = . As soon as they had been computed.66. Such a conclusion is attempted in Table 12 which illustrates the number of significant correlations (NoS) and the mean of their strength (MoS) for each scale of each coding procedure as well as their summary and respective Cronbach alpha coefficients. 10. it appeared that Absolute scales of Denial (α = .48) were less reliable with Relative to Both Projection completely useless (α = . Projection (α = . In general.57. and Overall defensiveness (α = .48.wants to compare between alternative scoring systems it should be said that Absolute and Relative to Length ones were the best (7 or 8 significant positive correlations with mean R = .76). should be strongly confined when one remembers that it is based on the data (NoS. The general conclusion that can be drawn is that Relative to Length and Absolute scoring systems are the most internally consistent and that Relative to Both scores are the least reliable in this aspect.69.α = .55 or mean r = .55).70.28. It is for this reason that conventional alpha coefficients should be more final and decisive here. the presence of 27 positive and significant correlations (out of 48 expected) was a bit more than in case of Denial and Projection but still seemed to be not enough.53.
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