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February 1970

Communication in Families of Schizophrenic Patients Describing Common Objects as a Test of Communication Between Family Members

Author Affiliations

New Haven, Conn
From the Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, New Haven, Conn. Dr. Feinsilver is currently with the Center for Studies of Schizophrenia, National Institute of Mental Health, Chevy Chase, Md.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1970;22(2):143-148. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1970.01740260047007

THERE has been increasing focus on the study of distorted communication in families of schizophrenic patients during the past ten years, beginning with the work of Bateson et al,1 Lidz et al,2 and Wynne et al.3 Most recently Singer and Wynne have shown that verbal communication in families of schizophrenic patients can be differentiated from communication in other families by the degree to which it demonstrates impaired focal attention, that is, by the degree to which it demonstrates stylistic qualities which impair the listener's ability to focus his attention on the meaning of what is being communicated. Singer and Wynne have examined the communication of parents in various settings and groupings: as they related, both individually and as a couple, to a tester during psychological tests,4-8 in a family by Rorschach,9 and in family therapy.10 Wild et al11

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