Nature Vs. Nurture in Relationship to Personality Annotated Bibliography

Excerpt from Annotated Bibliography :

Bleidorn, W., Kandler, C., Hulsheger, U.R., Riemann, R., Angleitner, A., & Spinath, F.

M. (2010). Nature and nurture of the interplay between personality traits and major life goals. Journal Of Personality And Social Psychology, 99(2), 366-379.


The first article is written by Bleidorn and a few other authors. Per the title, it pertains to the interplay and correlation between a person's personality traits and their life goals as they progress through life. The author's thesis centers on a question asked by a research study done about fifteen years ago when it was asked whether or what the conceptual relationship between personality traits and goals happens to be. The introductory statement also talks about how motivational constructive have long been considered part and parcel of a person's personality and how the personality then manifests and displays (Bleidorn et al., 2010).

The article goes on to talk about major life goals using the prism and lens of agency and communion. There is then reference to the interplay that might or might not exist between traits and goals and how this all relates to theories of personality. The study notes that the NST points to four core components, those being tarits, motives, abilities and narratives. The method and measures of the study are covered next. The first table of the study shows rates of things like neuroticism, extraversion, openness and other personality traits. The study then goes through its multiple points of analysis and review. One finding of the analysis revealed that agentic goals were positively related to extraversion, openness and conscientiousness (Bleidorn et al., 2010).

The study concludes with a discussion about what was covered and analyzed up to that point in the study. As part of that conclusion, there is a section about the refining of the phenotypic picture. There are some questions posed including how heritable major life goals happen to be, the unique genetic effects that render, the common environmental effects on the "Big Five" and/or major life goals in general, and whether there are cross-time effects between the "Big Five" and the major life goals. Limitations and future directions of research are found at the end of the study (Bleidorn et al., 2010).

Article Two

Bleidorn, W., Kandler, C., Riemann, R., Angleitner, A., & Spinath, F.M. (2012). Genetic

and Environmental Influences on Personality Profile Stability: Unraveling the Normativeness Problem. Journal of Personality, 80(4), 1029-1060.


The second study reviewed in this annotated bibliography comes from a lot of the same authors as the first one but it is most definitely a different study and it covers a different point of analysis and a different overall subject related to nature/nurture and personality. The stated purpose of the study is to disentangle the genetic and environmental influences that exist as it relates to personality and why people tend to act the way that they do. They concede that different types of stability and change need to be considered to get the entire picture of the patterns and sources of personality development that exist (Bleidorn, Kandler, Riemann, Angleitner & Spinath, 2012).

The authors of this new study then touch upon a lot of the work of prior authors that explored the same or similar subjects. These names include van Aken, Hale, Meeus and others. The authors then talk about personal profile stability and how it is a single construct that takes on multiple labels. Indeed, they cite that there are many differences and iterations of personality and they wish to find the genesis of such differences and variations. They then talk about the personality profile stability and the normative-ness problem. The latter refers to the paradigm and lens that clouds and complicates the findings that would otherwise be found. The complexity of the paradigm and the analysis that occurs leads to a muddying of the conclusions that can be drawn (Bleidorn, Kandler, Riemann, Angleitner & Spinath, 2012).

The authors then get into the present study. They use a multi-rater twin approach to personality profile stability. They discuss the method, the data analyses, the biometrics and so forth. They conclude the study with the results. One thing that came to light is that self-review was often quite different than peer review of the same person and it varied based on the incident and timing of the analysis. In the discussion, they note that people that grow up in a relatively stable household tend to be able to adjust and change their personality scope as needed. They also note that genes play a huge role. In short, they suggest that both nature and nurture play major roles in what makes a person what they are from a personality standpoint (Bleidorn, Kandler, Riemann, Angleitner & Spinath, 2012).

Article Three

Torgersen, S. (2009). The nature (and nurture) of personality disorders.

Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 50(6), 624-632.

The third and final source used for this report is from a different author entirely and specifically covers one dimension of personalities and that would be personality disorder and dysfunction. As noted early on in the study, personality disorders manifest in the form of choleric, melancholic, hysteric, libidinal, character and neurotic issues, among many others. The prevalence of such personality disorders are covered next. It is admitted and conceded that many people with depressive and anxiety issues also have personality disorders that are comorbid with those depression and anxiety issues, thus complicating…

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