An Integrative Perspective
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How do people cope with stressful experiences? What makes a coping strategy effective for a particular individual? This volume comprehensively examines the nature of psychosocial stress and the implications of different coping strategies for adaptation and health across the lifespan. Carolyn M. Aldwin synthesizes a vast body of knowledge within a conceptual framework that emphasizes the transactions between mind and body and between persons and environments. She analyzes different kinds of stressors and their psychological and physiological effects, both negative and positive. Ways in which coping is influenced by personality, relationships, situational factors, and culture are explored. The book also provides a methodological primer for stress and coping research, critically reviewing available measures and data analysis techniques.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction and Purpose of the Book
2. Why Is Stress Important?
3. Definitions of Stress
4. The Physiology of Stress
5. Design and Measurement Issues in Stress Research
6. Why is Coping Important?
7. Theoretical Approaches to Coping
8. Measurement of Coping Strategies
9. Statistical Issues in Coping Research
10. Coping and Mental Health
11. Coping and Physical Health
12. Coping with Traumatic Stress
13. Sociocultural Aspects of Coping
14. Developmental Studies of Coping
15. Stress-Related Growth and Transformational Coping
16. Self-Regulation, Self-Development, and Wisdom
Carolyn M. Aldwin, PhD, is Professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences at Oregon State University. She received her doctorate from the University of California, San Francisco, in 1982, and was a National Institute of Mental Health postdoctoral scholar in Human Development, Environmental Demands, and Health at the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Aldwin received a FIRST award from the National Institute on Aging for her study of psychosocial factors and health in aging early in her career at the Boston Veterans Administration, and has published over 90 articles and chapters in this area. She is a fellow of both Divisions 20 (Adult Development and Aging) and 38 (Health Psychology) of the American Psychological Association, as well as of the Gerontological Society of America.
-In this second edition, Aldwin provides an informed overview of the huge body of research and theory on coping. She presents potentially difficult content in easy-to-digest terms and covers a broad array of important issues. Thus, the book is ideal for graduate-level classes. It also will be of great interest to social and behavioral scientists and professionals who want to understand the basic empirical findings on this important topic and their relevance to real-world concerns, particularly in the areas of mental and physical health and aging.--Nancy Eisenberg, PhD, Department of Psychology, Arizona State UniversityCarolyn Aldwin has further enriched a book that was already rich in ideas, facts, and theory. This second edition offers a comprehensive account of the field of stress and coping with some very appealing new material, especially in the areas of development, positive aspects of stress, social aspects of stress, and stress and health. Aldwin’s multidisciplinary perspective is exactly what is needed in the field.--Susan Folkman, PhD, Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, University of California, San FranciscoI didn't realize that there was so much I didn't know about stress until I read this book. While giving fair coverage to reductionism and interactionism, Aldwin makes a convincing case for transactionism as a way to integrate a vast amount of research on stress. Anyone interested in health psychology will find this work very useful.--Ellen J. Langer, PhD, Department of Psychology, Harvard UniversityI know of no other book that has accomplished what this work does: It provides an insightful and thorough examination of stress and coping research as it relates to human development across the lifespan. The second edition includes valuable new chapters on the physiology of stress; transformational coping; and self-regulation, self-development, and wisdom. Also laudable is the discussion of methodological advances, such as methods for the analysis of longitudinal data, which have permitted the field to examine the effects of stress and coping on human development more rigorously.--Manfred Diehl, PhD, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Colorado State University