Socio-Cultural Factor

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  • Socio-cultural Factors
    • AO1
      • Prior to schizophrenic episode, patients report twice as many stressful life events
      • Double-bind theory - contradictory messages from parents prevent coherent construction of reality, lead to schizophrenic symptoms
      • Expressed emotion - family communication style involving criticism, hostility and emotional over-involvement
      • Leads to stress beyond impaired coping mechanisms and so schizophrenia
      • Labelling theory - symptoms of schizophrenia seen as deviant from rules ascribed to normal experience. Diagnostic label leads to self-fulfilling prophecy
    • AO2
      • Some evidence challenges link between life events and schizophrenia. Evidence for link is only correlational,not causal.
      • Importance of family relationships in development of schizophrenia shown in adoption study by Tienari et al
      • Double-bind theory supported by Berger - schizophrenics recalled more double-bind statements from mothers.
      • Expressed emotion - has led to effective therapy for relatives
      • Scheff - 13/18 studies consistent with predictions of labelling theory
      • Link supported in both retrospective and prospective studies
      • Expressed emotion effects much less common in non-individualist cultures


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