Defining Abnormality-Team Assignment

Topics: Religion, Gender, Sexual orientation Pages: 4 (1230 words) Published: February 24, 2014
Defining Abnormality
The term abnormality is one that is hard to define; it means a deviation from typical behavior. There are many things that can make abnormal behavior different. Classification of abnormality can be changed based on things such as religion, age, culture, gender, and politics. Behavior is shaped by ones personality, which is influenced by factors such as, environment and culture. Culture seems to be one of the biggest factors in deviating between normal and abnormal behavior. Religion is usually closely tied in with culture. Another big factor that seems to determine if behavior is normal or abnormal is age (Damour & Hansell, 2013). Classification of Abnormal Behavior

Behavior is classified as abnormal and normal. Situational factors can make those classifications different. Based on a person’s views and beliefs abnormal behavior can change. Normal behavior for a one year old is to need help getting dressed, however it would be abnormal for a typical 7 year old to need someone to dress them. Some cultures condone child soldiers, while some cultures do not. Depending on the culture a child soldier could be normal or abnormal. The same abnormal and normal classification also is true with other situational factors (Mental Health, n.d.). Culture

Culture is perhaps one of the most constant challenges that a person faces, when defining normal or abnormal behavior. This because there are so many different cultures that people come from, and very few people have a direct understanding of each and every one of them (Dakss, 2014). What may be considered an ok or normal action in our everyday society could very well be a forbidden law or horrific insult to another simply because of the difference in cultures. A perfect example would be an interview that took place between Dan Rather and Saddam Hussein, in which Dan Rather sat in a chair with one leg crossed over the other and exposing the sole of his foot to the former leader. In Saddam’s...

References: Dakss, B. (2014). CBSNews. Retrieved February 8, 2014 from
Damour, L., & Hansell, J. (2008). Abnormal Psychology (2nd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Mental Health. (n.d.). Classification of abnormal behavior. Retrieved February 9, 2014 from
Ramsden. (2013). Defining Abnormal Behavior. Retrieved February 7, 2014 from
Wilson, K. (2014). The disparate classification of gender and sexual orientation in American psychiatry. Retrieved from:
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