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Adult life stage and crisis as predictors of curiosity and authenticity: Testing inferences from Eriksons lifespan theory

Adult life stage and crisis as predictors of curiosity and authenticity: Testing inferences from Eriksons lifespan theory

Robinson, Oliver C., Demetre, James D. and Litman, Jordan A. (2016) Adult life stage and crisis as predictors of curiosity and authenticity: Testing inferences from Eriksons lifespan theory. International Journal of Behavioral Development. pp. 1-6. ISSN 0165-0254 (Print), 1464-0651 (Online) (doi:10.1177/0165025416645201)

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Abstract

During periods of developmental crisis, individuals experience uncomfortable internal incongruence and are motivated to reduce this through forms of exploration of self, other and world. From this, we inferred that crisis would relate positively to curiosity and negatively to a felt sense of authenticity. A quasi-experimental design using self-report data from a nationally representative UK sample (N = 963) of adults in early life (20-39 yrs.), midlife (40-59 yrs.) and later-life (60+) showed a pattern of findings supportive of the hypotheses. Three forms of curiosity (intrapersonal, perceptual and epistemic D-type) were significantly higher, while authenticity was lower, among those currently in crisis that those of the same age group not in crisis. Crisis was also related to curiosity about particular book genres; early adult crisis to self-help and spirituality, midlife to self-help and biography, and later life to food and eating.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Curiosity; Crisis; Erikson; Life stage; Authenticity; Adult development
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education & Health
Faculty of Education & Health > Applied Psychology Research Group
Faculty of Education & Health > Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2017 11:00
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: GREAT a
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/16191

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