Psychology of character, General concept of character...

Psychology of character

The general concept of character. Character structure

Differences in the properties of needs, self-awareness, will, abilities, temperament do not exhaust the whole wide complex of individual characteristics. The differences existing between people are diverse and concern all aspects of their "omnipresent" the psyche. People differ throughout the mental makeup, the manner of behavior, the relationships that bind them to the world of other people and things. For each person, the uniqueness, the uniqueness of the psyche and the personality are characteristic. This is the psychological individuality of a person. Character - one of the main components of individuality.

A character is understood as a set of stable, individual characteristics of a person expressing an attitude toward the world and determining typical ways of behavior in certain life situations and circumstances.

The word character widely used in life, in literature. When interacting with other people, each person manifests his own character and evaluates it in others. Common definitions of character such as "good", "bad", "heavy", "easy" are common. When the relationship is broken, they often say: "Do not get along with the characters." People with different characters behave differently in similar circumstances, react differently and experience differently. If we know the character of another person, we can better understand his actions, choose the optimal style of communication with him, foresee his behavior.


The class teacher decides which of the students is more appropriate to appoint a class starosta. One of the candidates is a good organizer, he often shows rudeness and rigidity in dealing with his comrades. The other is honest, principled, but not sociable, it will be difficult for him to establish contacts with all the children. The class teacher is looking for a student with leadership qualities, conscientious, executive, disciplined. The better he is able to understand the characteristics of his students, the better will be his choice.

Knowledge of the characteristics of the character is important when recruiting people for work, their appointment to a responsible position, the recruitment of groups to carry out joint activities. The prevention of conflicts, the establishment of a positive psychological climate in the team, and the increase in the effectiveness of communication also largely depend on this. This applies to the full extent to the management of the teaching collective and to the pedagogical communication, in the process of which the teacher solves important educational, educational and organizational tasks.


The formation of the first scientific ideas about the character refers to ancient times and is associated with the name of Aristotle, who described the differences in morals and ways of thinking among different people. His disciple, the ancient Greek philosopher Theophrastus (372-287 BC) systematized these differences and singled out 30 traits by which one can judge the type of person, for example, the flatterer, the pretender, the chatterbox. He also introduced the term "character" in scientific usage. (Greek charakter - trait, chasing), writing a treatise "Ethical characters". Later, the French moral writer Jean de Labruier (1645-1696), who had long observed the customs of the nobility, described more than a thousand typical features of character. AF Lazursky, who considered the study of personality and character as one of the main tasks of psychology, created characterology - a section of psychological science about the essence, structure, types and development of character.

In contrast to the temperament, which depends on the innate, anatomical and physiological characteristics, and primarily on the properties of the nervous system, the character of a person is formed during life, in the process of socialization and upbringing, as a person enters into a diverse system of relations with the objective reality and other people.

The theory of the formation of a person's character, depending on his relationship to reality, was developed by VN Myasishchev and BG Ananiev. First, the relationship takes place at a specific emotional level. They determine the experience of a person, the features of perception of reality, behavioral responses to external influences. Positive or negative experience of relationships with people forms and the corresponding system of internal relations of the individual. Repeated emotional positive and negative reactions cause longer psychic states, which are gradually fixed and become stable personality qualities, character traits.

To. K. Platonov (1904-1985) defined three main features of character traits: they must be sufficiently pronounced, closely interrelated with other features and systematically manifested in various activities.

The concepts personality traits and character traits are often used as synonyms, but they should be distinguished. Personality as a psychological entity is broader than a character that is only one of its substructures. The central, system-forming link in the personality is the need-motivational sphere. Needs and motives, values ​​and meanings determine the direction of the personality and its numerous psychological manifestations. For the sake of the triumph of the main values ​​for him, a person can manifest different traits of his character or change them.

The life path of people, the relationship in which they enter, the conditions of upbringing are characterized by originality. The natural prerequisites for the development of individuality are also different, therefore, each individual has its own unique set of features and manifestations of character. However, along with the individual characteristics of the nature of each person, and features common to other people. This is due to the fact that similar circumstances of life of people living

Under the same social conditions, they form typical character traits. In addition, each member of society is also a member of other specific groups: the family, the training group, the production team, various informal communities. Each of them exerts its specific influence on the character of a person.

The essence of character lies in the unity of the individual and the typical.

Not all relationships are considered character-forming , but only the most significant ones, related to the satisfaction of basic human needs. First of all, this is the relationship to society and other people, to work, to oneself, to things. At present, more than two thousand character traits are described that are related to each other and form its structure.

Character structure is a stable group of traits that reflect a variety of types of human relationships to reality.

Relationships with society and other people form moral traits character. Humanity, honesty, adherence to principles, justice characterize a high level of moral development. Egoism, unscrupulousness, spiteful disposition, deceit, on the contrary, speak of moral imperfection of character.

In the system of relations to other people, a special group is communicative features : benevolence, responsiveness, sensitivity, openness, sincerity, politeness. People who have such traits communicate more effectively in a variety of situations: in the family, at work, with colleagues, friends. They more successfully overcome psychological barriers in communication caused by socio-cultural differences, or negative feelings arising in the course of communication, for example mistrust, envy, dislike.


Moral and communicative character traits are professionally significant qualities of the teacher.

The teacher's manifestation of the injustice, ill-will, and rudeness of the students speaks of his professional incompetence, his inability to have effective pedagogical communication, and his conflict. The development of professionally significant traits of character is as important for the teacher as mastering subject knowledge and pedagogical skills.

In the system of human relations to work are formed diligence, conscientiousness, responsibility, discipline. Teaching can also be regarded as a special kind of work - educational. Both work and teaching are connected with overcoming obstacles and require the development of strong-willed character traits: purposefulness, perseverance, independence, patience. These character traits are important for achieving difficult goals in any kind of activity. Opposite qualities: laziness, irresponsibility, indiscipline, nonsassembly - disorganize activity, do not allow a person to set and solve important for him educational or professional tasks.

Attitude towards yourself is formed in the structure of a person's self-consciousness as his cognitive, emotional and evaluative components. From early childhood and throughout life, the surrounding people have a certain attitude towards the child, evaluate his actions and actions. These relations are internalized and become internal mental relations of a person to himself, traits of his character. Depending on the prevailing types of relationships, modesty or narcissism, self-criticism or self-confidence, pride or humiliation, self-esteem or a sense of inferiority are formed in the character.

Important for a person are his attitude to things. A child from birth uses a variety of things created by the work of other people. The older he becomes, the more he has needs for various things - toys, books, clothes, dishes, etc. One child breaks a toy, and he is scolded for it, another immediately buys a new one. Someone does not allow a friend to play with his typewriter, and someone distributes all his toys. Gradually, the child develops such traits as neatness, thrift, generosity, or negative traits: inaccuracy, extravagance, greed. In the future, these features will largely determine the lifestyle of a person, the device of his housing. Sloppiness, untidiness cause surrounding people a feeling of disrespect for a person, prevent him from establishing positive interpersonal relationships.

In addition to the groups of relationships listed above, there are many others, for example, attitudes toward nature, to objects of art, creativity, religion, which, when repeated in different life situations and fixed in the way of life, turn into character traits.

There are positive and negative traits in each person's character, although their ratio may be different. Sometimes it is quite difficult to define one or another trait as positive or negative because of the existence of a set of faces and shades inside each property. So, thrift can reach stinginess, accuracy - up to pedantry. Pride is sometimes perceived by others as arrogance and arrogance, self-confidence - as self-confidence. About a rare person you can say unequivocally that he is kind, evil, energetic or passive.


This was also written by Leo Tolstoy: "We can say about a man that he is often more kind than evil, more intelligent than stupid, more energetic than apathetic, and vice versa; but it will be untrue if we say about one person that he is kind or intelligent, but about another, that he is wicked or stupid. And we always divide people. And this is not true. People are like rivers: the water in all is the same and everywhere the same, but each river is sometimes narrow, then fast, then wide, then quiet, then clean, then cold, then muddy, then warm. So are the people. Each person carries in himself the rudiments of all the human qualities and sometimes manifests alone, sometimes others are often quite different from themselves, remaining all the same one and themselves. "

What features people often show, and how they are perceived by other people, depends on his environment, attitude to him, understanding. In the processes of communication and education should be based on positive traits. If a child is constantly being told that he is bad, he will almost certainly become so. It is important to notice all positive manifestations of his character and support their development.

Different character traits can be expressed in a person in varying degrees. Individual features are so dramatically and excessively expressed that they begin to hinder its adaptation in society and personal development.

Character traits, pronounced, representing extreme variants of the norm, are called accentuations : traits deviating from the norm are psychopathies .

United States psychiatrist PB Gannushkin (1875-1933) singled out three criteria by which these phenomena can be differentiated: totality, stability, social disadaptation. Totality is that psychopathies are manifested always and everywhere, regardless of specific conditions; from the harm that the ego can bring to the person or other people. Stability is that psychopathies manifest themselves over many years, sometimes all life. The person constantly has difficulties in interacting with other people: in the family, in school and at work, which speaks of his social maladjustment. Totality, stability and social disadaptation under character accentuation also take place, but to a lesser extent and easier to correct.


Karl Leongard (1904-1988) and AE Licko (1926-1996) described various types of accentuations and psychopathies, such as hypertensive type (excessive excitability), asthenic (hypersensitivity and rapid exhaustion ), hysteroid (demonstrative behavior), epileptoid (strong irritability, formation of supervalued ideas), schizoid (violation of emotional contacts with people), etc.

People who have accentuations in their character structure require a special, differentiated attitude, taking into account their type and degree of expression. As a rule, they need counseling and help from a psychologist.

Psychopathies are considered pathological traits, and their treatment requires the professional competence of the psychoneurologist.


Character accentuations are often manifested in teenage schoolchildren. If one of them has a fast fatigue, frequent affects for no apparent reason, significant difficulties in communicating with peers, non-observance of distance in communication with adults, isolation and isolation from others or other deviations in behavior, they should be closely watched with the side of teachers and school psychologists.

Observe the activities and behavior of students, determine the features of their nature and make up the psychological and pedagogical characteristics of the child's personality should be able to every teacher. It is advisable to do this from the moment the child enters the school during all the years of study, which makes it possible to trace the individual path of his development. Theoretical and methodical work, psychodiagnostic research of character, development and application of corrective measures, if necessary, are the tasks of the school psychologist.

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