Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Interactive Influences of Narcissism and Gender Stereotypes on Insecure Attachment
by French, Rebecca E., Ph.D., Alliant International University, 2018, 73; 10813990
Abstract (Summary)

Narcissism is a well-known psychological construct that bears implications for personality, development, adjustment, and relationships. Insecure attachment is also a part of well-developed psychoanalytic theory in psychology. Much research has been conducted on the two constructs, but little has been empirically discovered about how the two relate to each other, particularly for the developing age group of early adolescence. Morf and Rhodewalt [Psychological Inquiry, 12, 4, (2001)] propose that narcissism and insecure attachment are associated, and that whereas narcissistic boys are more likely to report an avoidant attachment, narcissistic girls are more likely to report an anxious attachment. Further, the associations between narcissism and insecure attachment may hinge on the degree to which individuals have internalized prevailing gender stereotypes regarding attachment styles (i.e., that an avoidant style is normative for boys and that an anxious style is normative for girls). A sample of early adolescents (N = 159, 77 boys, 82 girls, Mean age = 12.05 years) responded to measures of narcissism, own-gender stereotypes in attachment styles, and insecure relationship styles to a close friend. Results from hierarchical regression analyses countered what was hypothesized, finding that narcissism negatively predicated the avoidant style, and that gender did not moderate this relationship. Further, results indicated that for the anxious style, narcissistic children who endorsed having an own-gender stereotype of the anxious style were less likely to endorse having an anxious style. Results suggest that there may be something unique about attachment to a close friend and narcissism in early adolescence that warrants further investigation.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Menon, Meenakshi
Commitee: Morales, Eduardo, Roosa, Beth
School: Alliant International University
Department: Professional Psychology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 79/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Social psychology, Clinical psychology, Personality psychology
Keywords: Adolescents, Attachment, Gender, Gender stereotypes, Narcissism
Publication Number: 10813990
ISBN: 978-0-355-91555-6
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