Adaptation to Life

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Harvard University Press, Aug 11, 1998 - Psychology - 416 pages
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Between 1939 and 1942, one of America's leading universities recruited 268 of its healthiest and most promising undergraduates to participate in a revolutionary new study of the human life cycle. The originators of the program, which came to be known as the Grant Study, felt that medical research was too heavily weighted in the direction of disease, and their intent was to chart the ways in which a group of promising individuals coped with their lives over the course of many years. Nearly forty years later, George E. Vaillant, director of the Study, took the measure of the Grant Study men. The result was the compelling, provocative classic, Adaptation to Life, which poses fundamental questions about the individual differences in confronting life's stresses. Why do some of us cope so well with the portion life offers us, while others, who have had similar advantages (or disadvantages), cope badly or not at all? Are there ways we can effectively alter those patterns of behavior that make us unhappy, unhealthy, and unwise? George Vaillant discusses these and other questions in terms of a clearly defined scheme of "adaptive mechanisms" that are rated mature, neurotic, immature, or psychotic, and illustrates, with case histories, each method of coping.
 

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Between 1939 and 1942, one of America's leading universities recruited 268 of its healthiest and most promising undergraduates to participate in a revolutionary new study of the human life cycle. The ... Read full review

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This DO NOT MISS BOOK is the result of the one of the most brilliant initiatives in psychology. The Grant Study focuses on males, but is applicable to people generally in many cases. Worth a read regardless, as you'll learn what "Mature" behavior actually is.

Contents

Basic Styles of Adaptation
73
Development Consequences of Adaptation
193
Concluions
327
References Cited
376
A Glossary of Defenses
383
The Interview Schedule
387
The Rating Scales
389
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About the author (1998)

He is a widely respected researcher, psychiatrist & professor at the Harvard Medical School. He is also the author of several books, including The Wisdom of the Ego, The Natural History of Alcoholism & Adaption to Life. He is considered one of the world's foremost authorities on aging.

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