UIUC PSYC 238 - psych 238 midterm (33 pages)

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psych 238 midterm



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Chapter One Examples and Definitions of Abnormal Behavior Defining Abnormal Behavior Personal Distress subjective discomfort distress Statistical Deviance relative frequency of specific condition in general population Social Non Conformity violation of moral standards observer discomfort situational cultural context What is Mental Illness Mental illness is a natural fuzzy concept Thomas Szasz myth of mental illness Definitions Harmful Dysfunction Wakefield A condition is a mental disorder only if it results from failure of some internal mechanism to perform its natural function it causes harm to the person as judged by standards of that person s culture Symptoms thoughts feelings and behaviors that indicate a mental disorder Syndrome a group of symptoms that tend to co occur and are assumed to have a common etiology Additional Considerations duration impairment The Role of Culture Zeitgeist spirit of the times drapetomania out homosexuality out pathological gambling in Cultural Relativity Etic vs Emic Etic perspective outsider Emphasis on universals among human beings from a position outside the culture of interest Who decides what is abnormal Historically it has been Western social scientists imposing their standards of normality Now we are starting to acknowledge that this is an ethnocentric cultural bias that may not be the best representation of reality Emic perspective insider Examines behavior from within a culture using culture specific criteria Requires understanding cultural norms and cultural meaning of subtle behaviors Cultural Influences on Prevalence Weisz 1987 Problem Suppression Facilitation Model culture suppresses via punishment some behaviors culture facilitates via modeling and reinforcement other behaviors Adult Distress Threshold Model culture determines adult thresholds for different types of child problems How often does abnormal behavior occur Epidemiology study of the frequency and distribution of disorders within a population Comorbidity



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