Personality Science: Three Approaches and Their Applications to the Causes and Treatment of Depression

Pages: 262
Item #: 4317245
ISBN: 978-1-4338-0893-7
List Price: $34.95
Member/Affiliate Price: $29.95
Copyright: 2011
Format: Hardcover
Availability: In Stock
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For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


The latest volume from respected scholar and researcher Marvin Zuckerman is a masterful examination of three contemporary scientific approaches to the study of personality—the psychodynamic, the trait-psychobiological, and the cognitive. The book also focuses on corresponding theoretical frameworks that continue to guide much of the research on personality disorders—Attachment and Separation, the psychobiological paradigm, and cognitive frameworks.

Most books on personality theories devote little attention to the applied, clinical realm. Yet Personality Science engages the reader in a discussion of applied personality theories on psychopathology and the crucial contemporary research they have generated: prospective studies from childhood to adulthood, and concurrent studies of the biological correlates of major personality traits.

In the concluding chapters of this work, Professor Zuckerman applies the three approaches to the psychopathology of depression—specifically, to Major Depressive Disorder and dysthymia—surveying the theories and research on the etiology of depression, and exploring clinical applications of the three personality approaches (i.e., psychodynamic and cognitive therapy, and psychopharmacological therapy) to the treatment of the disorder.

Table of Contents



  1. Psychodynamic Approaches
  2. Trait and Psychobiological Approaches
  3. Trait and Psychobiological Theories: Beyond Eysenck
  4. Cognitive Approach
  5. Depression: Diathesis and Vulnerability
  6. Depression: Treatment


Author Index

Subject Index

About the Author

Author Bio

Marvin Zuckerman, PhD, is a professor emeritus in psychology at the University of Delaware, where he taught and conducted research for 33 years. He received his doctoral degree from New York University in the area of clinical psychology.

He worked for several years as a clinical psychologist in state hospitals before accepting a research position at Indiana University Medical Center's Institute of Psychiatry. There he began his experimental studies in sensory deprivation, which continued for the next 11 years at Brooklyn College, Adelphi University, and the Endocrinology Research Labs of Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

His curiosity about individual differences in reactions to sensory deprivation led to the development of the first Sensation Seeking Scale. Research and theory building around the sensation seeking trait has been the major part of Dr. Zuckerman's work to the present and has resulted in three major books on that topic: Sensation Seeking: Beyond the Optimal Level of Arousal (1979), Behavioral Expressions and Biosocial Bases of Sensation Seeking (1994), and Sensation Seeking and Risky Behavior (2007).

Results of the research on sensation seeking pointed to a strong genetic–psychobiological basis for the trait in brain reactivity and psychopharmacology and, more recently, neuropsychology using new brain-imaging methods. On the basis of this research and comparative research on animals, Dr. Zuckerman began to formulate a trait model based on the biological as well as the behavioral aspects of personality.

Two books emerged from this research: Psychobiology of Personality (1991) and a second, revised and updated edition (2005). Another book, Vulnerability to Psychopathology: A Biosocial Model, was published in 1999. In addition to these books and two edited volumes, Dr. Zuckerman has published over 200 research and theoretical articles and chapters in edited volumes.

Dr. Zuckerman is a fellow of APA and the Association for Psychological Science, and he is one of the founders and a past-president of the International Society for the Study of Individual Differences.