Hysterical personality and depression: A pathogenetic view

Renato Alarcon, Lino Covi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


A survey of the literature on hysterical personality and depression in the last two decades is done in order to achieve some degree of agreement between conflicting approaches. The existence of seven fundamental characteristics of the hysterical personality is mentioned and the hypothesis is offered that in the contemporary clinical scene, hysterical personalities and hysterical phenomena in general, express themselves chiefly as depressive syndromes of some special characteristics. A pathogenetic view of this process on the basis of the genetic comprehension of an interactional process between noxae and personality vulnerabilities is presented. Illustrative cases are commented on to substantiate this view and to describe depression as the kind of psychopathological response that better suits the outlined personality features. The psychotherapeutic implications of this often-encountered clinical phenomenon are also reviewed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-132
Number of pages12
JournalComprehensive Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1973
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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