Psychological Perspective

Jan Strelau

University of Warsaw Warsaw, Poland, and Silesian University Katowice, Poland

Kluwer Academic Publishers

New York, Boston, Dordrecht, London, Moscow eBook ISBN: 0-306-47154-X Print ISBN: 0-306-45945-0

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To the memory of Boris M. Teplov and Hans J. Eysenck and to Alexander Thomas and Stella Chess all pioneers of contemporary temperament research

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More than 40 years have elapsed since I was a psychology student at the University of Warsaw and wrote a seminar paper on temperament, specifically, on Teplov's contribution to this field. My first published paper, which appeared in 1958, was devoted to Pavlov's typology of higher nervous activity, and to assessing temperament in children. These four decades of my academic career can be summarized in two statements: (1) My professional activity has always been rooted at the University of Warsaw as its center; and (2) from its inception, my research has concentrated on temperament. These statements require some elaboration.

Although I was in my 40th year before the Polish authorities of the period granted me permission, for the first time, to travel outside the socialistic sphere, I was nonetheless fortunate in having had numerous opportunities during the previous two decades to visit academic centers and establish direct contact with experts in temperament research from around the world.

In 1966, before the gates to the West were opened to me, I spent 6 months in Teplov's Laboratory of Differential Psychophysiology in Moscow. This visit was very fruitful. I was able to realize my own research projects which concentrated on EEG and photochemical correlates of the Pavlovian temperament constructs, and became acquainted with the whole range of methods and theoretical issues related to CNS properties as developed by Boris Teplov, Vladimir Nebylitsyn, and their coworkers. During my stay in Moscow, the Eighteenth International Congress of Psychology took place. There would be no reason to mention this if this event had not accorded me the opportunity to meet and talk with, among others, Hans Eysenck and Jeffrey Gray, whom I knew only from the literature. Under the influence of their theories, I extended my temperament interests beyond the Pavlovian typology. This meeting resulted in close research contacts with both of them, which have lasted until the present day.

My first visit to the West was in 1971 when I was awarded a scholarship by the U.S. IREX Foundation which afforded me a one-year stay in the United States. While doing research on Drosophila melanogaster in the laboratory of Professor Jerry Hirsch at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign), I obtained my initial education in behavior genetics, for which there was no opportunity in Polish universities at that time. The stay in America was nevertheless a crucial step in my research activities, mainly because of the numerous contacts I was able to establish with American scientists engaged in research on temperament and related areas. Of special significance to me were personal contacts with Alexander Thomas and Stella Chess, the founders of contemporary temperament research in the United States. They in turn provided contacts with most of their followers and colleagues, including Robert Plomin, Mary Rothbart, Hill Goldsmith, Bill Carey, Adam Math-eny, Roy Martin, Ted Wachs, and many others, with whom I have had continuous research relationships through correspondence and more or less regular meetings.

The fact that my research interests have concentrated for such a long time on temperament might imply a rather narrow orientation in my scientific activity. This is true only in the sense that temperament constitutes a very small part of psychological phenomena. At the same time, to speak of a narrow orientation is inappropriate since my studies on temperament are based on a very broad perspective. As expressed in many of my publications, my interests embrace all kinds of issues and problems related to temperament in humans (both children and adults) and animals. Further, development of my own conceptualizations into the "regulative theory of temperament" has led to my interest in determining how my theory relates to the contributions of others in this field of study. This is most clearly addressed in my book Temperament—Personality—Activity, published by Academic Press in 1983.

As a result of my study of the literature on temperament, as well as my participation in numerous international meetings dedicated to this field, I have become increasingly convinced that many temperament researchers are not likely to extend their scientific efforts beyond the narrow topic or issue on which they are focused. This is most evidenced by the fact that child-oriented temperament scientists are frequently unfamiliar with studies and concepts of adult-oriented researchers, and vice versa. In many publications on temperament within a given theoretical approach, minimal attention is given to links with other conceptualizations in this domain. Geographical isolation among temperament scientists is more the rule than the exception. I could quote hundreds of papers in which references are limited to authors of one nation, even though much research has been conducted in the same temperament domain in other countries. Furthermore, for political reasons, an impassable geographical barrier affecting scientists from the former socialist countries existed for many years. This barrier no longer exists, but researchers from these countries still experience intellectual deprivation that is characterized mainly by lack of professional books and journals, and this is true for temperament researchers, including myself. However, during the past decade there has been noticeable progress in mutual contact.

Efficient research activity under such conditions of intellectual deprivation requires compensatory mechanisms which I have been able to develop with some success. With access to Current Contents, I have systematically collected reprints from my domain of research which most authors mailed to me at my request. Also, since my first visit to the United States a quarter century ago, I have used every opportunity while abroad to make copies of papers and chapters of interest to me. Many researchers working in the domain of temperament and other personality areas have donated copies of their books as gifts. The monograph of Boris Teplov mailed to me in 1961 with a personal dedication opened this collection, which today covers the most representative books on temperament. As a result of the generous support of friends and colleagues around the world, as well as my own efforts, I have been able to collect almost 5,000 reprints, most of which are on temperament and related areas.

The factors that stimulated me to work on a book that brings together knowledge on temperament in children and adults, that goes beyond geographical isolation, and that reports research based on different paradigms and conceptualizations include the conviction that knowledge on temperament is still not sufficiently integrated, the belief that my over 40 years of research in this domain has led to development of a broad view on a variety of issues related to temperament, and, finally, access to an almost complete temperament literature.

The idea of writing a monograph of this kind had already taken shape in my mind in the mid 1980s. It was Robert Brown, coeditor of the Plenum Press Series Perspectives on Individual Differences who, while working in 1990 on Strelau and Angleitner's Explorations in Temperament: International Perspectives on Theory and Measurement, encouraged me to write an integrated volume on temperament.

Authors know that writing a book requires particular tolerance for delay in getting positive reinforcement, with the risk that it may not happen at all. I have managed to overcome this hurdle and to pass the critical point of reaching this tolerance level, even though it took me a full six years to prepare this text. The preliminary synopsis of the book and the first chapter were written in 1991-1992 during my second one-year stay at the University of Bielefeld. The Max Planck Award given to me and Alois Angleitner by the German Max Planck Society and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation provided conditions for efficient concentration on this task. I was fortunate to be able to continue work on the book in almost ideal circumstances at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS) in Wassenaar, where in 1992-1993 I was a fellow-in-residence. Almost exclusive concentration on completing this book resulted in preparing Chapters 2, 3, 4, and 5 at NIAS. During the next two years, I prepared Chapters 6 and 7. During the last year, I also updated the chapters written in the initial stage. The preparation of Chapter 7 ("Functional Significance of Temperament"), the content of which precisely reflects my recent research activity, was financially supported by a grant from the Polish Research Foundation (KBN 1HO1F 06609).

My original plan was to cover as many topics related to temperament as possible. However, in order not to extend the volume size, selectivity was necessary and such decisions are always influenced by a person's own views and experiences. I have tried to present in the chapters the most important issues in the temperament domain, but I can appreciate that some readers may have a somewhat different view of what is most significant regarding our knowledge of the subject.

An essential question concerns the readership of this book. The most obvious audience is, of course, students of psychology. In writing this book, however, I had a broader audience in mind. Experts in given fields of temperament research, whether psychologists, physicians, or educational scientists, may profit from this monograph as a source for a variety of temperament topics. The ample list of references provides a good starting point for extended studies. Specialists in biological aspects of temperament and behavior genetics need not read the introductory parts of Chapter 4 ("Physiological and Biochemical Correlates of Temperament") and Chapter 5 ("Behavior-Genetic Research on Temperament"), which I consider useful for readers with minimal biological orientation. In the applied domains, there are many areas of professional enterprise, such as education, health, and organization or management, where temperament is a subject of interest. Not infrequently, attempts are made to assess this aspect of personality and to make given predictions regarding an individual's future functioning. Chapters on temperament theories (2 and 3), diagnostic matters related to temperament (6), as well as the discussion on the functional significance of temperamental traits (Chapter 7), provide bases for extending the theoretical background of applied issues.

It rarely happens that authors publish books that are entirely new with respect to content. The material needed for writing a book grows to a certain extent as a result of partial presentation in the form of papers and chapters written on different occasions, and this is the case with Temperament: A Psychological Perspective. Several ideas and phrases presented may be found in some of my previous publications. Nevertheless, even when published elsewhere, they have been included in this volume in a new context in order to contribute to a more synthetic, integrative picture on temperament.

The list of persons to whom I owe so much in preparing the final version of the manuscript is very long, and incomplete, hence I beg those colleagues who were helpful in some way, and are not mentioned here, to forgive me.

Chapter 1 ("The History and Understanding of the Concept of Temperament"), was read by Alois Angleitner, Marvin Zuckerman, and Rebecca Geiger. Their critical remarks led to essential changes. I mailed Chapter 2 ("The Initiators of Contemporary Research on Temperament") and Chapter 3 ("Current Theories of Temperament") to all authors whose temperament theories are presented therein (excluding the late Teplov), asking for critical remarks and comments. All ten authors responded to my request, and from nine of them I received constructive remarks, comments, and friendly support. Chapter 4 ("Physiological and Bio chemical Correlates ofTemperament") was reviewed by Jan Matysiak and Petra Netter. The detailed corrections and supplements by Professor Netter were extremely helpful. My coworker, W/odek Oniszczenko, made useful comments on Chapter 5 ("Behavior-Genetic Research on Temperament") and Chapter 6 ("Assessment of Temperament: Diagnosis and Methodological Issues"). The latter was also constructively reviewed by Alois Angleitner, Jerzy Brzezitiski, and Bogdan Zawadzki, the last mentioned a coworker of mine. In addition, Bogdan Zawadzki kindly prepared the statistics of our questionnaire data presented in Chapters 1 and 6. Very helpful were the comments of Stevan Hobfoll on a large part of Chapter 7 ("The Functional Significance of Temperament"). I would like to express my cordial thanks to all my friends, colleagues, and coworkers just mentioned for their important aid and valuable contributions to the final version of my book.

Although my English is far from adequate, I wrote the book in this language. Frankly, it was not easy, if even possible, to express some subtle ideas which I could have formulated in Polish. Professor Grace W. Shugar, a distinguished scientist in child psycholinguistics, was generous in working on my text as English-language editor. Her very detailed corrections and remarks improved the manuscript considerably. I wish to express my most cordial thanks for Dr. Shugar's assistance. Chapter 1 was corrected for English language errors by Helena Grzegolwska-Klarkowska to whom I also owe much for the work she has done.

All drawings in the book which are not photoprinted, and there are more than 40 of them, were prepared by Dr. Wojtek Pisula, a colleague from my department. I am not sure that he was aware how much work was entailed when he willingly agreed to provide the figures for this book. I am exceedingly grateful to him and appreciate his altruistic attitude.

I am deeply indebted to each of my twelve coworkers at the Department of Individual Differences. Whenever the need arose, they were always helpful and very cooperative. Their constructive criticism during our scientific meetings helped to clarify several problems confronting me in writing the book. I thank my efficient secretary, Grazyna M/odawska, whose essential contribution involved preparing the final drafts for the publisher.

My greatest debt is to my wife, Krystyna, who was able to create an atmosphere and conditions which were very conducive to my work. Without her tolerance and the support I received continuously from her while writing this book, completion of such a long-lasting task would have been impossible.

I am very grateful to the Senior Editor, Eliot Werner, for his personal involvement in the publication of Temperament: A Psychological Perspective.

Jan Strelau

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Chapter 1 The History and Understanding of the Concept of

Temperament 1

Temperament from a Historical Perspective 1

The Speculative Approach to Temperament 2

The First Empirical Studies on Temperament 8

The Constitutional Typologies of Temperament 19

The Concept of Temperament 28

The Emotion-Oriented Understanding of Temperament 28

Temperament Understood as a Style of Behavior 31

Biology-Oriented Definitions of Temperament 32

Concluding Remarks Regarding the Understanding of Temperament... 35

Temperament and Personality 38

Temperament as a Component of Personality or as a Concept

Synonymous with Personality 39

Aspects in Which Temperament and Non-Trait-Oriented Personality

Concepts Differ 44

Temperament and the Big Five Factors of Personality 49

Chapter 2 The Initiators of Contemporary Research on Temperament 59

Introduction 60

Eysenck's Biological Theory of PEN 62

Roots of the PEN Theory 62

The Dimensions and Structure of Temperament 63

The Biological Background of PEN 66

Assessment Procedures Used for Diagnosing PEN 69

The Eysenckian Superfactors in Relation to Performance and Social Behavior 70

Critical Remarks 75

The Neo-Pavlovian Typology: Teplov and His School 77

Roots of Teplov's Approach to Studies on Nervous System

Properties in Man 78

The Concept of Temperament and Its Postulated Structure 79

Studies on Properties of the Central Nervous System 80

Methods Used for Assessing the CNS Properties 84

Properties of CNS in Relation to Behavior 88

Critical Remarks 89

The Interactional Theory of Temperament Developed by Thomas and Chess 90

Roots of the Interactional Theory of Temperament 90

The NYLS as Source and Evidence for the Interactional Theory of

Temperament 91

Temperament Measures Applied by Thomas and Chess 95

Temperament and Behavior Disorders 95

Critical Remarks 98

Chapter 3 Current Theories of Temperament 101

Child-Oriented Theories of Temperament 103

Buss and Plomin's Behavior-Genetic Theory of Temperament 104

The Developmental Model of Temperament: Rothbart and Derryberry 111

The Emotion-Centered Theory of Temperament Developed by Goldsmith and Campos 119

Kagan's Inhibited and Uninhibited Temperaments 124

Adult-Oriented Theories of Temperament 129

Mehrabian's PAD (Pleasure-Arousability-Dominance)

Temperament Model 131

The Neuropsychological Model of Temperament Developed by Gray ... 139 The Biological Theory of Sensation Seeking Developed by Zuckerman 146

Rusalov's Theory of Temperament Based on a Functional

Systems Approach 156

Strelau's Regulative Theory of Temperament 162

Chapter 4 Physiological and Biochemical Correlates of Temperament 171

Introduction 171

The Structure, Physiology, and Biochemistry of the Nervous System as Related to Temperament Characteristics 175

The Neuron 176

The Autonomic Nervous System 181

The Central Nervous System 183

Final Remarks 189

Psychophysiological Correlates of Temperament 189

Physiological Correlates of Temperament Referring to Autonomic Arousal 191

Physiological Correlates of Temperament Referring to Cortical Arousal 203

Biochemical Correlates of Temperament 223

Cortisol: The Hormone That Gained Highest Popularity in Temperament Studies 224

Temperament-Neurotransmiter Relationship 227

General Remarks 233

Chapter 5 Behavior-Genetic Research on Temperament 237

Theoretical Issues of Behavior Genetics as Related to

Temperament Research in Humans 238

Heritability as a Measure of the Contribution of Genetic Factors to Individual Differences in Behavior Characteristics 239

Basic Behavior-Genetic Methods Used in Temperament Studies 242

Relationships between Genes and Environment and the Genetic

Regulation of Development 245

Behavior-Genetic Studies on Temperament: Selected Empirical Data 248 Studies on Animals as the First Step in Searching for the Genetic

Determination of Individual Differences in Temperament 248

Extraversion and Neuroticism: The Two Temperament Traits

Most Often Explored in Behavior-Genetic Studies 249

Heritability of Selected Temperament Traits 253

Developmental Changes in the Contribution of Genes and

Environment to Individual Differences in Temperament 262

From Quantitative Genetics to Molecular Genetics 268

Final Remarks 269

Chapter 6 Assessment of Temperament: Diagnosis and

Methodological Issues 273

Methods of Temperament Assessment 274

Assessment of Temperament Based on Observational Data 274

Psychophysical and Psychophysiological Indicators of Temperament Characteristics 281

Interview as a Source of Information Regarding Temperament 284

Temperament Questionnaires 286

Questionnaire Approach to the Study of Temperament in Infants and Children 287

Temperament Questionnaires for Adolescents and Adults 297

Strategies for Constructing Temperament Inventories, and Traits Measured by These Instruments 305

Selected Issues Related to Temperament Assessment 314

The Manifold Approach to Temperament Assessment 315

Construct Validity of Temperament Inventories Based on Psychophysiological and Psychophysical Measures 320

Temperament Assessment from a Cross-Cultural Perspective 327

Chapter 7 The Functional Significance of Temperament 335

The Contribution of Temperament to Child Behavior and Adjustment in Adverse Situations 336

The Concept of Difficult Temperament 336

Temperament and Goodness of Fit 340

Difficult Temperament and Psychiatric Disorders 343

Difficult Temperament and Adjustment 345

Difficult Temperament in Clinical Samples 351

Temperament and Schooling 353

Temperament as a Moderator of Stress Phenomena 361

The Understanding of Stress Phenomena 362

Temperament and Stress: Hypothesized Relationships and Empirical Findings 365

Temperament as a Moderator of Stress Consequences:

The Temperament Risk Factor 376

Final Remarks 387

Appendix 391

References 395

Index 453

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