Human Behaviour and Performance Are the Result of Multiple Influences

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When trying to explain the complexities of human behaviour Adorno et al’s (1950) research into authoritarian personality emphasised that early childhood experiences have a strong impact on personality. Rokeach (1960) observed dogmatism as a cognitive function, not connected to personality. Bigelow and La Gaipa (1975) highlighted friendship and the interaction with others to be an important influence on behaviour. Biology; the relationship between the brain and the cognitive process ‘language’ is another aspect of influence on behaviour and performance. Adorno et al (1950) carried out a study on the authoritarian personality; a type of personality characterised by deference to authority, Hostile to individuals of inferior status, strict obedience to rules, prejudiced thinking and inflexibility in opinions and beliefs. Initially, Adorno et al devised a set of criteria in which he set out to define personality traits. The F scale (F for fascist) measured an individual’s potential for fascism/prejudice. Adorno et al used a succession of questionnaires to measure people’s attitudes to Jews and minority groups and conservative political ideals. Adorno et al began with the assumption that by measuring individuals’ attitudes they could gain insight into personality characteristics and so therefore could draw conclusions about beliefs, outlooks, and feelings about societies which are assumed to influence behaviour. (Brace and Byford 2010) In addition, Adorno and his colleagues used interviews informed by the psychoanalytic theory of personality to help identify the reasons of the authoritarian traits; this theory identified that relationship with parents and early childhood experiences have a strong impact on personality. Adorno et al went further to expand the theory by maintaining that individuals with a strict punitive upbringing by critical parents were more likely to develop an authoritarian personality. (Brace and Byford 2010) The study conducted by Adorno et al...
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