Alexithymia, dissociation, and social desirability: investigating individual differences in the narrative content of false allegations of trauma
alexithymia, credibility, dissociation, social desirability, trauma
This study examined the potential influence of alexithymia, dissociation, and social desirability on the narrative features associated with truthful and fabricated traumatic events. Participants (N = 291) wrote narratives describing both genuine and fabricated traumas and completed scales measuring individual differences. Alexithymia was associated with less plausible reports (independent of veracity) and differential reporting of emotional details between narratives. Higher levels of dissociation were related to less coherent and plausible reports, and less contextual detail in fabricated reports. Further, coherence and plausibility ratings fluctuated between low, moderate, and high social desirability groups. These results suggest that individual difference factors are important considerations in the forensic assessment of the veracity of trauma reports.
Peace, K. A., & Bouvier, K. A. M. (2008). Alexithymia, dissociation, and social desirability: Investigating individual differences in the narrative content of false allegations of trauma. Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, 47, 138-167. doi: 10.1080/10509670801941035
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