Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Slater I 204
Resilience/Psychological theories: among others a study by Werner and Smith “Vulnerable but invincible: A study of resilient children” (Werner and Smith, 1982)(1) contributed a landmark in resilience research. See also Anthony and Koupernik, (1974)(2), Garmezy and Rutter (1983)(3).
Slater I 205
According to Masten (2007)(4) there are four overlapping waves of resilience science
1) basic research to define, measure, and describe this family of phenomena
2) efforts to understand resilience processes
3) tests of resilience theory through experimental intervention studies
4) integrative, inherently multidisciplinary, research across multiple levels of analysis.

Def Resilience/psychology/tradition/Masten: Resilience was often described in terms of positive function or development despite the presence of risk factors. Children who did well in adverse circumstances were identified as “invulnerable” (an unfortunate term that soon lost adherents), “stress- resistant,” or “resilient.” The goals of such studies were often to identity qualities of the child (e.g., gender, personality, or abilities) or environment (e.g., relationships or supports) that seemed to be associated with positive adaptation, competence or mental health in the context of risk.
VsTradition: new approaches: Transactional models highlighted the bidirectional nature and multiplicity of effects resulting from ongoing interactions of a changing person with a changing environment. During socialization, for example, a parent would be expected to change child behavior through discipline, monitoring, or encouragement in age- and child-appropriate ways. (Eisenberg, 1977(5); Gottesman & Shields, 1972(6), 1982(7); Sameroff & Chandler, 1975(8); Sroufe, 1979(9)). >Resilience/Rutter.
Slater I 207
The definition of resilience and related terms has become even more dynamic, with concepts like “resilience” or “protection” or “vulnerability” assumed to arise from complex interactions and processes across many levels of the individual and the person interacting with other people or their context (Cicchetti, 2010(10); Sapienza & Masten, 2011(11)). Concepts like protection or resilience are increasingly viewed as emergent properties of dynamic systems in interaction. In later years, many resilience scientists would refer to generally good influences (associated with desirable outcomes for all levels of risk) as “promotive” factors (Sameroff, 2000)(12) and generally bad influences as “risk factors,” while recognizing that many characteristics or experiences play varying roles along a continuum. (>Distinctions/Rutter).
For protection: see >Resilience/Rutter, >Interaction/Rutter.
For negative chain reactions: see >Resilience/developmental psychology.
Slater I 212
Parental care: a number of experiments corroborate the important roles of parental care for resilience (see Gest & Davidson, 2011(13)), in studies that have targeted change in quality of parenting (e.g., Borden et al., 2010(14), Patterson et al., 2010)(15) or foster care (Fisher, Van Ryzin, & Gunnar, 2011(16); Smyke, et al., 2010(17)).
Neurobiology of resilience: see Curtis & Cicchetti, 2003)(18).
Culture/ecology of resilience: see Luthar (2006)(19), Ungar (2008(20), 2011(21).



1. Werner, E. E., & Smith, R. S. (1982). Vulnerable but invincible: A study of resilient children. New York: McGraw-Hill
2. Anthony, E. J., & Koupernik, C. (Eds) (1974). The child in his family: Children at psychiatric risk. New
York: Wiley.
3. Garmezy, N., & Rutter, M. (1983). Stress, coping and development in children. New York: McGraw-Hill.
4. Masten, A. S. (2007). Resilience in developing systems: Progress and promise as the fourth wave rises. Development and Psychopathology, 19, 921—930.
5. Eisenberg, L. (1977). Development as a unifying concept in psychiatry. British Journal of Psychiatry,
131, 225—237.
6. Gottesman, L L, & Shields, J. (1972). Schizophrenia and genetics: A twin study vantage point. New
York: Academic Press.
7. Gottesman, I. I., & Shields, J. (1982). Schizophrenia: The epigenetic puzzle. New York: Cambridge University Press.
8. Sameroff, A. j., & Chandler, M. j. (1975). Reproductive risk and the continuum of caretaking casualty.
In F. D. Horowitz, E. M. Hetherington, S. Scarr-Salapatek, & G. M. Siegel (Eds), Review of child development research (VoL 4, pp. 187—243). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
9. Sroufe, L. A. (1979). The coherence of individual development: Early care, attachment, and subsequent developmental issues. American Psychologist, 34, 834—841.
10. Cicchetti, D. (2010). Resilience under conditions of extreme stress: A multilevel perspective. World
Psychiatry, 9, 145—154.
11. Sapienza, J. K., & Masten, A. S. (201 1). Understanding and promoting resilience in children and youth. Current Opinion in Psychiatry, 24, 267—273.
12. Sameroff, A. J. (2000). Developmental systems and psychopathology. Development and Psychopathology, 12, 297—312.
13. Gest, S. D., & Davidson, A. J. (2011). A developmental perspective on risk, resilience and prevention.
In M. Underwood & L. Rosen (Eds), Social development: Relationships in infancy, childhood and adolescence (pp. 427-454). New York: Guilford Press.
14. Borden, L. A., Schultz, T. R, Herman, K. C., & Brooks, C. M. (2010). The incredible years parent training program: Promoting resilience through evidence-based prevention group. Group Dynamics:
Theory, Research and Practice, 14, 230—24 1.
15. Patterson, G. R., Forgatch, M. S., & DeGarmo, D. S. (2010). Cascading effects following intervention.
Developmental Psychopathology, 22,941—970.
16. Fisher, P. A., Van Ryzin, M. J., & Gunnar, M. R. (2011). Mitigating HPA axis dysregula-tion associated with placement changes in foster care. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 36, 531—539.
17. Smyke, A., Fox, N., Zeanah, C., Nelson, C. A., & Guthrie, D. (2010). Placement in foster care enhances quality of attachment among young institutionalized children. Child Development, 81, 212—223.
18. Curtis, J., & Cicchetti, D. (2003). Moving resilience on resilience into the 21st century: Theoretical and methodological considerations in examining the biologica1 contributors to resilience. Development and Psychopathology, 15, 773—810.
19. Luthar, S. S. (2006). Resilience in development: A synthesis of research across five decades. In D.
Cicchetti and D. J. Cohen (Eds), Developmental psychopathology. Vol. 3: Risk, disorder, and adaptation
(2nd edn, pp. 739—795). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley and Sons.
20. Ungar, M. (2008). Resilience across cultures. British Journal of Social Work, 38, 18—35.
21. Ungar, M. (201 1). The social ecology of resilience: Addressing contextual and cultural ambiguity of a nascent construct. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 81, 1—17.


Ann S. Masten, “Resilience in Children. Vintage Rutter and Beyond”, in: Alan M. Slater and Paul C. Quinn (eds.) 2012. Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies. London: Sage Publications


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Psychological Theories
Slater I
Alan M. Slater
Paul C. Quinn
Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies London 2012


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