Extended Definition: Abnormal PsychologyAbnormal psychology PsychologyPortal · History Areas · Wikiproject
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Abnormal psychology is the scientific study of abnormal behavior in order to describe, predict, explain, and change abnormal patterns of functioning. Abnormal psychology in clinical psychology studies the nature of psychopathology, its causes, and its treatments. Of course, the definition of what constitutes 'abnormal' has varied across time and across cultures. Individuals also vary in what they regard as normal or abnormal behavior. In general, abnormal psychology can be described as an area of psychology that studies people who are consistently unable to adapt and function effectively in a variety of conditions. The four main contributing factors to how well an individual is able to adapt include their genetic makeup, physical condition, learning and reasoning, and socialization.HistoryThe history of how abnormal psychology, began with the research of the famous ancient Greek philosopher Plato in the fourth century B.C. During his time most believed that the strange behaviors and actions that psychologists study today were caused by evil spirits. Plato believed this to be false and spoke his ideas of these behaviors being caused by a "natural madness, usually caused by a disease". Unfortunately his words had no affect on the common people of his age. During the Dark Ages, the idea of the behaviors being caused by evil spirits escalated to the idea that people were being possessed by demons. Many people were exorcised by the churches or burned at the stake for possessing these "demons". Over approximately one hundred...
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