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April 1968

Personality and Arousal: A Psychophysiological Study of Psychiatric Disorder.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1968;18(4):506-507. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1968.01740040122015

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Relative to a book of this type which reports a series of experiments contributing to a theoretical framework, a frequent question is whether or not the final conclusions are justified or true. In this particular instance, a more plausible question is whether or not they are possible. The aim of the research is to develop a theory of personality unifying neurosis, psychosis, and normal behavior.

A majority of the book presents a series of experiments comparing hysterico-psychopaths, dysthmics, and normal subjects. Included within the general term of dysthmics are those with chronic anxiety states, obsessional neuroses, and reactive depressives. The other abnormal group includes conversion hysterics, hysterical personalities, and psychopaths. This review will follow the custom in the book which refers to the former group as dysthmics and the latter group as hysterics.

Two pivotal tests used for the development

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