Adult attachment and emotional responses to traumatic memories among palestinian former political prisoners

  • Kanninen K
  • Punamäki R
  • Qouta S
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Abstract

The association between attachment styles and emotional responses to traumatic memories was
examined among 153 Palestinian former political prisoners. Self-report tools revealing adult
attachment and intensity and valence of emotional responses were applied. As hypothesized, a
high intensity of cognitive appraisal and a low intensity of affective responses characterized the
emotional profile of insecure-dismissing men. By contrast, the emotional profile of insecurepreoccupied men was characterized by low cognitive and high affective responses, and
intensive behavioral urge to act. Secure men in turn had a moderate and balanced emotional
profile involving both cognitive and affective responses. In accordance with the activation
hypothesis, when exposed to a high level of torture and ill-treatment, the insecure-preoccupied
men showed especially intensive affective and behavioral responses. Contrary to the
hypothesis, the insecure-dismissing men showed high-intensive cognitive and low-intensive
affective responses independently of the severity of the trauma exposure.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Adult attachment
  • Emotions
  • Torture

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Authors

  • Katri Kanninen

  • Raija Leena Punamäki

  • Samir Qouta

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