Offspring of Holocaust survivors and the process of self-actualization and related variables / by Steven Richard Antman
Includes bibliographical references (p. 104-116)
The purpose of the study was to examine the relationship between parental involvement in the Holocaust and the process of self-actualization and related variables as experienced by their offspring. It was suggested that when both parents experienced and survived the Holocaust it had the most detrimental effect, followed by one parent who survived and the other parent escaped, while both parents having escaped was the least detrimental. Therefore it was expected that levels of self-actualization, self-esteem, and internal locus of control would increase while external locus of control and death anxiety decrease progressively in the above classifications. Subjects were 71 offspring of Holocaust survivors ranging in age from 16 to 36. The offspring were divided into three groups based on parental Holocaust backgrounds. All subjects completed a series of measurements, including: Personal Orientation Inventory, Tennessee Self-Concept Scale, Rotter Internal-External Locus of Control Scale, Templer Death Anxiety Scale, and Sacks Sentence Completion Test. A multivariate investigation, discriminant function, was conducted. The results significantly discriminated the offspring of two parent survivors and two parent escapees from the offspring of one parent survivor, one parent escapee. However, the discriminant function did not separate the offspring of two parent survivors from the offspring of two parent escapees. The findings indicated that offspring of two parent survivors and two parent escapees displayed the incorporation of self-actualization values but rejected their application, seemed to suppress feelings, and were suspicious of others. They also exhibited a positive self-esteem. In contrast, offspring of one parent survivor and one parent escapee displayed a lack of the incorporation of self-actualization values but showed an expression of behavior as presented by self-actualizing people. They also exhibited a good self-regard and presented a more positive view of others but also maintained a somewhat suspicious nature. Findings did not support the expected group levels of self-actualization. The results did indicate that the family units for all three groups had the capacity to foster some self-actualization qualities in the offspring comparable with those of the general population.
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