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- Maurice Bassett
- Tillier, M Sc William (foreword)
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Kazimierz Dabrowski refers to his view of personality development as the theory of positive disintegration. He defines disintegration as disharmony within the individual and in his adaptation to the external environment. Anxiety, psychoneurosis, and psychosis are symptoms of disintegration. In general, disintegration refers to involution, psychopathology, and retrogression to a lower level of psychic functioning. Integration is the opposite: evolution, psychic health, and adequate adaptation, both within the self and to the environment. Dabrowski postulates a developmental instinct?that is, a tendency of man to evolve from lower to higher levels of personality. He regards personality as primarily developing through dissatisfaction with, and fragmentation of, the existing psychic structure?a period of disintegration?and finally a secondary integration at a higher level. Dabrowski feels that no growth takes place without previous disintegration. He regards symptoms of anxiety, psychoneurosis, and even some symptoms of psychosis as the signs of the disintegration stage of this evolution, and therefore not always pathological.
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“dabrowski’s theory is not only interesting but even exciting in its breadth and depth of its implications. the ubiquity of psychological symptoms has always confounded a simple descriptive psychopathological approach to mental illness. dabrowski’s theory gives these symptoms a role in normal personality development that is consistent with their broad distribution as shown by epidemiological studies and as felt by those aware of the problems in themselves and in those around them.”
~ Jason Aronson, Harvard Medical School
Kazimierz Dabrowski, M.D., Ph.D., (1902 - 1980) was born in Poland. He received his medical degree from the Forensic Medicine Department of the University of Geneva in 1929, and earned his Ph.D. in psychology, as well as a second medical diploma, from the Adam Mickiewicz University in 1931. Dabrowski was a very prolific scholar; his publications number in the hundreds in Polish, including some twenty major books. Dabrowski's titles in English include: Personality-shaping Through Positive Disintegration, Mental Growth Through Positive Disintegration, and Psychoneurosis Is Not an Illness.
foreword by William Tillier, M.Sc ix
- The Theory of Positive Disintegration 1
- The Principal Dynamics of Multilevel Disintegration 25
- The Feeling of Inferiority Toward Oneself 31
- The “Third Factor” in the Development of Personality 39
- Remarks on Typology Based on the Theory of Positive Disintegration 49
- Psychopathy and Psychoneurosis 55
- Jackson’s Theory and Positive Disintegration 63
- Positive Disintegration and Child Development 75
- Mental Health as the Progressive Development of Personality 83