chapter  9
Adaptive Processes 1: Stability
WithRobert A. LeVine
Pages 16

This chapter concerns the varieties of psychosocial adaptations that become stabilized in socially acceptable patterns of behavior. Its basic premise is that the operative social expectations for phenotypic (observable) behavior in a given role represent a stabilized compromise between private motives of high frequency in the personality genotypes of role incumbents and normative pressures stemming from public definitions of the role. The concept of a compromise formation originates in the work of Freud, who in 1896 proposed that neurotic, symptoms could be seen in these terms and later extended their applicability to dreams (1900) and many other imaginative and “accidental” acts of the individual. In 1923 he summarized the concept and its usage succinctly: