Project Details


DESCRIPTION This is an application for support for a two-day conference entitled, "Self, Social Identity, and Physical Health: Interdisciplinary Explorations." The purpose of the conference is to examine constructs related to self and identity as a framework for conceptualizing psychosocial aspects of physical health. These concepts have recently come to the forefront of social and behavioral sciences, but their application to problems of physical health and disease has received limited attention. We propose that self/identity constructs can form the basis of a new paradigm for conceptualizing psychosocial aspects of the biopsychosocial paradigm that has gained widespread acceptance in the health sciences over the past few decades. To evaluate this proposition, leading researchers working in the areas of self/identity and/or physical health/disease will examine the following issues: (1)Self, Sickness, and Systems concerns (a) individual-level systems involved in sickness, including the self-regulation model posited by health researchers and various self structures and processes posited by self researchers, and (b) the role of cultural systems in shaping the individual's experiences with illness and its treatment; (2)Self and Identity in Stress, Emotion, and Coping will examine (a) social identity factors (including treatment by others and the individual's own ethnic identity) as a source of stress and ultimately as contributing to disease, and (b) the utility of self and identity constructs in conceptualizing the processes whereby health is affected by the private experience of stress and by the inhibition or social expression of stress emotions; (3) Illness-Promoting Behavior Patterns as a Consequence of Social Identity and Self-Related Personality Structures will examine (a) the effects of social identity on the acquisition of health-damaging behavior patterns, and (b) the utility of self and identity constructs in the conceptualization of personality structures that have been associated with disease-promoting or health-enhancing behavior patterns; (4) Impact of Physical Illness on Identity will consider, from both a psychological and a sociological perspective, the changes in self-related processes, structures, and roles that occur as the individual copes with sickness and interacts with the health-care system. The conference will conclude with a round table discussion of all the talks. An edited volume based on the conference presentations will be published by Oxford University Press.
Effective start/end date7/1/977/31/97


  • National Institutes of Health: $9,664.00


  • Medicine(all)


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