The Development of Defense Mechanisms

  • Cramer P
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This volume proposes that defense mechanisms be considered as part of normal development and offers a general theory of defense mechanism development. The book provides an examination of the concept of defense, a comprehensive overview of the empirical and psychometric studies of defense mechanisms, and a new approach to measuring defenses. Part I reviews the conceptual models of defense and discusses the development of denial, projection, and identification throughout the life span. Part II provides an extensive review of numerous studies of 58 different measures of defense mechanisms. The use of questionnaires and other self-report inventories, as well as projective tests and clinical interviews, are discussed in this part of the book. In the last section a new approach to the assessment of defenses, the Defense Mechanism Manual, is described in depth. This approach permits thought processes to be revealed in an open-ended manner through extensive samples of verbal behavior. The psychometric features of the test are described, the validation studies are reviewed, and a scoring manual for the DMM is provided in the Appendix.




Cramer, P. (1991). The Development of Defense Mechanisms. The Development of Defense Mechanisms. Springer New York.

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