New PDF release: Advances in Experimental Clinical Psychology

By Henry E. Adams and William K. Boardman (Eds.)

ISBN-10: 0080163998

ISBN-13: 9780080163994

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The second stage consists o f the reinforcement, by fear reduction, of responses that are instrumental in removing the organism from the fear producing cues. The subject can avoid punishment by inhibiting the punished response (passive avoidance) or by making some other response (active avoidance). Concerning the former, Mowrer (1947) states: The performance of any given act normally produces kinesthetic (and often visual, auditory, and tactual) stimuli which are perceptible to the performer of the act.

It is obvious, o f course, that expectation o f punishment is not the only factor determining whether some specific behavior will occur. Many responses, for example, are ambivalent in nature, having both positive (rewarding) and negative (punishing) consequences. In effect, the individual is motivated to make the response and, at the same time, to inhibit it. Whether the response occurs, then, depends upon the relative weights assigned by the individual to the positive and negative consequences of the response.

With respect to the former, and using a simple conditioning paradigm (only one CS), Miller (1966) found that psychopathic criminals were not significantly inferior to neurotic criminals and noncriminals in the acquisition of a conditioned eyeblink. Warren and Grant (1955), using college students with high and low scores on the Psychopathic Deviate (Pd) scale o f the MMPI, obtained similar results. However, when a differential conditioning paradigm was used (one stimulus, + the C S , was followed by the UCS, an airpuff; the other stimulus, the CS", was not), the low-Pc?

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Advances in Experimental Clinical Psychology by Henry E. Adams and William K. Boardman (Eds.)


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