South African Journal of Psychology

Published by SAGE Publications
Print ISSN: 0081-2463
Publications
PIP In-depth interviews were conducted with five single South African women 20-31 years of age of varying socioeconomic backgrounds who underwent illegal induced abortion before implementation in 1996 of the Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act. The group included two students, a clerk, a factory worker, and a social worker. Of particular interest were the social context of the abortion decision, the abortion procedure itself, the psychological impact of the abortion, and perceptions of coping. Overall, the interviews indicated that the abortion decision is multidimensional and characterized by some degree of ambivalence. The decision to abort was based on lack of readiness to be a parent, financial hardships, pressure from the father, and fear of disapproval on the part of family members. The manner in which women responded to the abortion was a joint function of their psychological state and the social environment in which the procedure occurred. Although relief was the most common postabortion psychological response, feelings of guilt, shame, and loss also were present. Postabortion adjustment was positively influenced by the perception of support from one's partner. Further studies of this type are urged to help South African health providers to develop a framework for abortion counseling aimed at minimizing postabortion psychological distress.
 
PIP The HIV/AIDS pandemic intensified dramatically during the past decade. Risk reduction behavior, however, remains the only means of primary prevention. The behavioral sciences, especially psychology, can contribute a great deal to various aspects of AIDS and its prevention. This paper provides an overview of various behavioral aspects of HIV and AIDS through a presentation of the broad stages involved in the development of HIV infection and AIDS, with sequelae for the individual and society at each stage. Special attention is given to the unique South African situation with regard to AIDS, examining the present and prospective positions of psychology in South Africa with respect to AIDS.
 
In this study the authors examined knowledge of and attitudes to AIDS in a group of health care pofessionals. The results indicated high levels of knowledge about the disease. These results are regarded as positive findings, since their AIDS awareness showed the subjects were well informed and had formulated this knowledge from a relatively objective rather than judgemental/moralistic point of view. Three categories of attitudes were studied, that is, attitudes towards AIDS per se, attitudes towards homosexuality, and attitudes towards the sexuality of blacks. Attitudes towards AIDS per se varied considerably despite the relatively high levels of knowledge about the disease. Attitudes towards homosexuality had a substantial negative relationship with attitudes towards AIDS, a finding common to other studies. Attitudes towards AIDS were also related to attitudes towards the sexuality of blacks. It is concluded that attitudes towards AIDS in the group studied were substantially determined by historically grounded attitudes concerning the sexuality of marginalized groups. The implications of these findings as an additional component in combatting AIDS are discussed.
 
PIP Early research on HIV/AIDS had a mainly biomedical orientation. From 1984, however, consideration has also been given to the psychosocial aspects of HIV/AIDS. A more integrated view of the biological, psychological, and social aspects of HIV/AIDS has been increasingly evident in research agendas. The argument that HIV is a necessary, but insufficient cause of symptomatic disease development has led to extensive commentary upon the possible etiological significance of cofactors. This paper reviews research trends in the psychosocial aspects of HIV-AIDS and explores the role of psychosocial cofactors in disease progression. This is done with a biopsychosocial model with recognition of the role of psychosocial stress, social support, and emotional adjustment. Research data from a study of biopsychosocial interrelationships in a sample of HIV-positive patients show a significant correlation between social support and emotional adjustment and that social support exerts a mediatory, stress-buffering effect in these patients. Observations are made upon aspects of the social conditions of South Africans with HIV/AIDS.
 
PIP 36 nurses participated in a three-day AIDS education course conducted by the Community AIDS Information and Support Center of the Johannesburg City Health Department during 1992. Participants were representative of all race groups in South Africa, but there were only four men in the group. The authors evaluated the impact of the program upon AIDS-related knowledge and attitudes. A control group of 51 nurses from the J.G. Strijdom Hospital in Johannesburg was selected and a questionnaire administered to evaluate any changes in knowledge and attitudes among both groups. Responses to the questionnaire indicate that the course effectively produced significant changes in the dimensions of attitudes to homosexuals and attitudes to Black sexuality, but there was no significant change in attitudes to AIDS or knowledge of AIDS. These findings were confirmed at the one-month follow-up. The results suggest that time-limited education programs can change health professionals' attitudes on AIDS-associated patients and groups.
 
PIP The First AIDS Kit is an AIDS and lifestyle education program for teenagers developed by the Department of National Health and Population Development in 1992 in response to the threat of HIV/AIDS. The kit consists of a number of modules and exercises from which the presenter can choose what to present and make adjustments depending upon students' needs and the values of that community. The author evaluated the kit's impact upon secondary school students' intentions to adopt HIV/AIDS risk reduction behavior, their knowledge of AIDS, and their attitude toward people with AIDS. The program was presented to 339 students in standards 6-9 in 11 schools. The program was evaluated using a questionnaire before and after the program, as well as by focus group discussions with students and interviews with the program presenters. Although the program was not presented in ideal circumstances, it still positively affected students' knowledge of AIDS, their attitudes toward people with AIDS, and some aspects of their behavioral intentions. Students gave favorable evaluations of the program and offered suggestions on how to improve it with regard to the content, presenter, educational techniques, the role of parents, and how to address moral issues. AIDS education should form part of long-term life skills and sex education, with a focus upon behavioral change. Community education and participation are important elements in making school-based AIDS education programs effective.
 
With the co-operation of staff and volunteers from non-governmental programmes in nine South African cities, focus group discussions were held with 141 street children and youth, 79 of whom were enrolled in shelter programmes while 62 were still living independently on the streets. The group discussions focused on knowledge about transmission and prevention, attitudes towards AIDS and people with AIDS, and sexual and other behaviours related to AIDS risk. Both quantitative and qualitative information on the topics covered was extracted from the transcriptions of the discussions. The results indicated that, on a superficial level, South African street youth possessed relatively good knowledge about transmission and prevention. However, a more critical analysis showed that knowledge is obscured by moral imputations. In addition, street youth disclosed extremely negative attitudes to condoms and to people with AIDS. Accounts of sexual behaviour confirmed that street children and youth engage in a number of high-risk behaviours. The results are discussed in terms of their implications for intervention and, in particular, the inadequacies of the Health Belief Model and related theories, as the sole theoretical foundation for the design of intervention programmes.
 
PIP To determine which factors from a range of demographic, perinatal, psychosocial, and hormonal factors were related to postpartum depression, a sample of 81 women between 2 weeks and 6 months postpartum was divided into a depressed group (n = 22) and a nondepressed group (n = 59) by means of the Beck Depression Inventory as the main measure and the Visual Analogue Scale as an additional measure. A demographic questionnaire, a social support questionnaire, and a marital satisfaction questionnaire were completed by each subject. A depression incidence rate of 27.2% was found. There were significant differences between the depressed group and the nondepressed group in the area of social support, marital satisfaction, and premenstrual tension. No significant differences were found in age, parity, previous depressive episodes, cesarean births, or prematurity. It was concluded that psychosocial and hormonal factors played a more important role in postpartum depression than demographic and perinatal factors. (author's).
 
A Girls Empowerment Programme held in 2010 in Lesotho, Sub-Saharan Africa, focused on HIV/AIDS risk reduction and prevention, life skills and entrepreneurial training (income-generating activities). Entrepreneurial training was a crucial part of equipping the camp attendees with basic skills to help them develop sustainable livelihoods. Such skills and financial independence are essential to enable rural girls to complete their secondary schooling (in a fee-based educational system) and to pursue a career, as well as to further help them be less susceptible to transactional sex and its significant risks. The results of a brief process evaluation with some nested supporting data showed considerable improvement in the girls' knowledge about income-generating activities. In addition, almost half of the camp attendees participated in further entrepreneurial training and about half of these girls went on to develop small businesses. Replication of this model of camp training is recommended and being explored in other African countries.
 
Issues such as the reactions of Black and White adolescents to scenes of violence and interracial conflict in local TV broadcasts were investigated in a research project amongst 97 adolescents from 52 areas in Johannesburg and Pretoria. The correspondence between initial levels of aggression and perceptions regarding fictional and non-fictional program contents, as well as the differences between the perceptions of the Whites and Blacks regarding the program contents, were investigated. It seems that regarding the non-fictional portrayal of violence in the South African media, White adolescents are more desensitized than Black adolescents who live within these conditions every day. Black adolescents may enjoy fictional programs with physical violence more than White adolescents, but they experience more anxiety during exposure to non-fictional portrayals of events similar to the realities in the townships. They therefore tend to rate the level of violence depicted in news broadcasts higher than White adolescents. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Using a retrospective questionnaire approach, this study explored the prevalence of child sexual abuse (CSA) in 284 male undergraduates (aged 17–36 yrs). The definition of CSA included all unwanted contact or noncontact sexual experience involving a child 17 yrs old or younger. 82 Ss reported 91 experiences that met this definition. However, different definitions of CSA yielded different prevalance rates. After controlling for definitional and methodological sources of variation, the prevalence rate obtained for this sample did not differ significantly from those reported in studies of American college men (e.g., M. E. Fromuth and B. R. Burkhart, 1987). Factors that increased the risk of victimization included being Black, being raised by parents who were punitive or emotionally rejecting, and separation from the natural father for a major portion of childhood. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Explored empirical predictors of students' performance in a psychology course at a South African university within the context of procedural, distributive, and interactional fairness. Study 1 examined use of individual school subject results and the Arts Faculty Ratings as predictors; Study 2 focused on the predictive validity of the Arts Faculty Ratings and that of various psychometric aptitude tests. Ss were divided into 2 groups: Group 1 consisted of 1,048 primarily White students from private or government schools, considered not educationally disadvantaged; Group 2 was comprised of 53 Black students who attended Department of Education and Training (DET) schools and were seen as educationally disadvantaged. Results show that the Arts Faculty Ratings provided a significant predictor of academic performance for Group 1, but a far less clear picture emerged for Group 2. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Investigated whether there are gender differences in test anxiety among 92 part-time graduate students (63 women, 29 men; aged 24–52 yrs) and whether any differences in test anxiety have corresponding effects on academic performance. Results showed a small but significant sex difference in TA. There was also a statistically significant difference in academic achievement as reflected in performance on a class test in educational psychology, between those who had a high level of test anxiety and those with a low level of test anxiety. However, further analysis showed an inconsistent pattern of results regarding the effect of test anxiety on academic achievement. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Supports a suggestion that South African psychologists tend to avoid research problems with political implications, but ascribes this to more mundane reasons than to action in accordance with scientific principle. The neutrality concept is too ambiguous for use in a scientific context. Opinions concerning relevance are reviewed. It is concluded that it is meaningless to use relevance without stating to what it refers. Relevance is not absolute. To clarify its use, a distinction between communal, utilitarian and sapiential relevance is proposed. Sapiential relevance has become a controversial issue as a result of the rise of numerous special psychologies, including cross-cultural psychology, which attempts to grapple with the case for a universal as distinct from a number of indigenous psychologies. A compromise solution is suggested. Accountability is dealt with as relative to the responsibilities held by individuals. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
A central dilemma emerges when trying to understand perpetrators of evil deeds. Certain kinds of explanations may have the effect of minimising responsibility of perpetrators leaving a moral dilemma in terms of what is to be done. Hard and soft reactions to evil are described and the concept of entitlement is proposed as a way forward, reviewing also the findings of links between self-esteem and violence. A few South African examples illustrate the place of entitlement in explaining perpetrators' actions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Traditionally, South Africa has followed the West in using quantitative psychometric procedures for Neuropsychological Assessments. Procedures developed in other parts of the world, however, may yield further valuable information. Luria's Neuropsychological Investigation (LNI) (originating in Russia) provides a qualitative assessment of psychological processes which have been pathologically disturbed as a result of brain damage. It is therefore a descriptive profile which investigates a wide range of behaviour. In this research project, the suitability of using the LNI for White, English-speaking South Africans was investigated and minor modifications to the procedure are suggested.
 
Adapted The Metamemory in Adulthood (MIA) Questionnaire for cross-cultural applications in South Africa and investigated the reliability of its subscales with 878 Ss (aged 18–60+ yrs). Ss represented the following population groups: Black, Colored English-speaking, Indian, Afrikaans-speaking, and English-speaking Whites. An 8-factor structure was obtained in comparison with the 7 factors reported from American and Canadian samples. The Strategy Use factor split into Mental Memory Strategies and External Memory Aids. Results show that the adapted MIA is shorter than the original but the reliabilities of the subscales are still good. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
25 Black (mean age 42 yrs) and 25 White (mean age 54 yrs) South African breast cancer patients were assessed and compared in terms of their levels of depression, body image dysphoria and styles of psychological adjustment during the course of their post-surgical chemotherapy treatment. There were several differences in the psychological experiences of Black and White Ss. Most of the Black Ss experienced greater levels of somatisation, depression and body image dysphoria and tended to utilize less adaptive styles of adjustment to their disease. The only measure on which both groups more closely resembled each other was that of anxiety. The greater levels of psychological distress reported by most of the Black patient group may be due to traditional cultural reasons which possibly predispose them to suppress emotions or somatise them rather than display these outwardly, and because of a lack of knowledge and of psycho-oncological services for this group. These patients could be regarded as being at high risk for elevated distress levels requiring psychological intervention. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Developed a model for brief strategic family intervention with adolescent parasuicides in a general hospital setting, using 72 patients (aged 14–26 yrs) seen over an 18-mo period. A rationale and structured therapeutic procedure for intervention are provided. The intervention uses a systemic and time and cost-effective approach to facilitate resolution of a developmental impasse within the family as a whole. The approach incorporates elements of crisis intervention theory and strategic family therapy. A 3-yr follow-up suggested a zero parasuicide readmission rate for the present sample. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Illustrates one form of psychological treatment, family therapy (FMT), that is beneficial in a specific group of patients with anorexia nervosa. A controlled trial that evaluated the efficacy of different forms of psychological treatments shows that FMT is the superior treatment for patients with an early onset (age 18 yrs or younger) and short duration (less than 3 yrs) of illness. The development of FMT for anorexia nervosa is reviewed with specific emphasis on the controlled family treatment studies at the Maudsley Hospital in London. Two key ingredients of this treatment are identified. The first is to inform parents about the seriousness of the illness in order to raise their concerns and also reduce their guilt, and the second is to convince parents that they should take strict control of the ill daughter's eating pattern so as to achieve a sustained weight gain. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Administered the Death Anxiety Scale and the Religious Orientation Scale of the Omnibus Personality Inventory—Form F to 360 Indian university and high school students living in South Africa and representing in equal numbers the Christian, Hindu, and Muslim faith. The study examined the influence of age, sex, and religion on death anxiety and the relationship between death anxiety and religiosity. Equal numbers of male and female Ss were included in each age and religious group. Results show that Muslim Ss were more death anxious than Christian or Hindu Ss. The degree of commitment to religious practices and beliefs did not intensify or reduce death anxiety. Female Ss in all groups manifested higher death anixiety than male Ss. The effect of age was not significant. (Afrikaans abstract) (20 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Reports on a cohort of 137 male and 252 female adult in-hospital parasuicides. Age peaked between 20–29 yrs, with a decline corresponding with age advance. An increase in, and a lowering of, age in parasuicide were found. Most Ss were married and had a history and family history of psychological problems, including inordinate drug/alcohol consumption. Self-poisoning by overdose predominated, with benzodiazepines, antidepressants, and nonnarcotic analgesics being most common. A sex-linked difference in choice of method was evident. Adjustment disorders with depressed mood associated with interpersonal problems with a key person; substance abuse and social problems; and affective disorders were the most common psychiatric diagnoses. Increased subintentional parasuicide numbers were found. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Administered the JATs to 1,056 White, 1,063 Indian, 1,093 Black, and 778 Colored South African students in Standard 7 to determine whether the test battery measures the same psychological constructs in the various population groups. Factor analyses of the intercorrelations of test scores showed a 3-factor solution for each of the groups. In the White pupils (the reference group), these 3 factors were tentatively identified as a spatial, a memory, and a verbal factor. The constructs were subsequently specified in a LISREL-type model and fitted to the data for all 4 populations. Although a poor fit was obtained, the same measure of fit was obtained for all 4 groups. This finding points to the absence of bias in the construct validity of the JATs and to a greater resemblance between the cognitive structures of the different cultural groups than is generally believed. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Conducted a questionnaire survey of over 3,070 recreational users of inland waters in the greater Pretoria and Cape Town areas during 1987 and 1988 for the purpose of quantifying the perceptions of the public toward water quality and water pollution in South Africa. Ss indicated that excessive aquatic plant growth and other visually aesthetic factors were the principal determinants of water quality, regardless of demographic background. Results are comparable to results obtained in similar studies (e.g., E. L. David; 1971) in North America and appear to be indicative of a rising awareness of environmental issues in South Africa. There was a general willingness among Ss to meet the higher costs associated with the achievement of improved standards of water quality and the elimination of the perceived problems. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Psychology grew out of the European and North American soil, which, according to several African authors, is impoverished in soul and poor in spirit. It is to such psychology that we in South Africa bow our heads. In doing so we do ourselves a disservice, for there is in sub-Sahara Africa a psychological dimension which has a great deal to offer the rest of the world. Southern Africa's psychological potential is especially apparent with respect to the holistic principle — the importance of the majority of her people attach to the physical, spiritual and interpersonal dimensions of being. In contrast to Africa's holistic approach the framework of ‘bigoted rationalism and fanatic adherence to outer physical reality’, characteristic of western society, has created a dehumanized psychology, particularly apparent in South Africa. Not only is there no understanding or need to understand and know about the psychological principles underlying life in Africa, but psychology seems to be oblivious to the immense human drama being enacted within the borders of our country. The psychological profession fails to facilitate communication between the races and develop the empathic ability of white people. In the light of the present political climate, an interesting feature of South African psychology is the fact that Afrikaans speaking departments at universities are generally adhering closer to the ‘more’ human ‘Rogerian’ than the ‘less’ human ‘Skinnerian’ approach to therapy. Yet Rogers' concern for the dignity and worth of each individual is not implemented in the larger social context. Most of the English medium departments, adhering to a politically more liberal policy which claims to acknowledge the human rights of all citizens, paradoxically pay very little attention to the Rogerian approach.
 
Argues that apartheid (or the policy of racial segregation) adversely affects the mental well-being of most South Africans and that South African clinical psychology cannot claim scientific or moral respectability as long as it continues to take an uncritical position. South African clinical psychologists can begin to remedy this situation through the development of appropriate research and training as well as public pronouncement through their professional associations. (Afrikaans abstract) (58 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Investigated the differences/similarities between the performance values of White and Black managers to formulate indexes for the successful management of integration. It was found that typical Western performance values were virtually absent among Black managers. From a social-psychology viewpoint, it is reasoned that the exclusion of Black employees from human resource practices at the managerial level repressed values of importance for organizational growth. From a cognitive-psychology viewpoint, it appears that a lack of intrinsic and extrinsic rewards handicapped the development of performance values. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
A cross-cultural study was conducted to provide evidence related to previous research results on the life-span development of 3 divergent thinking abilities (fluency, flexibility, and originality). 19 9–22 yr olds, 17 13–27 yr olds, 19 18–25 yr olds, and 8 25–39 yr olds from 2 cultures (South Africa and the US) served as Ss. Ss responded to presentation of 4 groups of auditory stimuli recorded on a cassette tape. Responses were scored for fluency, flexibility, and originality. Developmental trends across the 4 age groups displayed a similar pattern in both cultures for all 3 variables. The developmental shape of these patterns was similar to those displayed in previous research using larger samples in the US. (23 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Considers that the development of psychology has been stimulated by the ample availability of funds, a particular interest of the public in psychology, and a sound infrastructure that regulates the professional and associational life of psychologists. However, although a considerable amount of research is done in South Africa, there are not many publications, and few research results are applied. Also, not enough is being done toward the accomplishment of a framework or system within which psychological knowledge can be classified; however, research is in progress that might lead to a breakthrough in this field. (Afrikaans abstract) (17 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Argues that the development of psychological services in South Africa has been stunted by the cross-cultural mystical (CCM) view that 1st-world psychology is culturally inappropriate for a 3rd-world clientele and that psychologists must undergo a radical acculturation before working effectively with these clients. An alternative pragmatic framework is developed to challenge the simplistic and desocialized notions advanced by the CCM view and to draw attention to the dynamics of oppression, cultural transformation, power, and social class. It is argued that empowerment in psychotherapy lies in creating a shared language of negotiation and respect. Three case examples illustrate a 6-step biopsychosocial therapeutic model, based on J. Haley's (1976) problem-solving family therapy. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
The aim of this article is to appeal against an attitude of nihilism with respect to test usage which occurs because tests have not been designed for application among a particular population, or because appropriate normative data are not yet available. In South Africa this attitude, in its extreme form, promotes a view that all tests in common usage on Westernized populations should be abandoned and new culturally relevant and appropriately standardized tests should be designed. In settings dealing with rural and illiterate or semi-literate populations, such a stance has relevance. However, this article cautions against an erroneous exaggeration of cultural effects which fails to take into account the acculturation process. Clinical and research data on urbanized African (Xhosa 1st language) Ss (2 10-yr-olds with head injury and a normal 7-yr-old) are used to demonstrate the absence of clinically significant cultural effects on frequently employed, standard test material. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
This article provides a brief history of the development of codes of ethics in two South African psychological associations. It also examines the patterns of complaints and enquiries forwarded to the ethics committees of these associations. Concerns about advertising dominated in a relatively low total number of complaints and enquiries over the years. Most of the complaints were lodged by psychologists themselves. The development of a code of ethics is linked to one aspect of professionalization: the certification of psychologists. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
The functioning of the Professional Board of Psychology with regard to ethical complaints and enquiries is discussed. A relatively low number of complaints was lodged in the period 1974 to 1990, with 23 findings of guilt established. Complaints involving fees or accounts predominated, with advertising an important second category. Advertising complaints mostly were submitted by psychologists themselves, while members of the public are well represented in the other categories of complaint. The findings are discussed in terms of the functioning of a code of ethics in the professional domain: to maintain the appearance of professional vigilance for ethical transgressions, and to punish visible offences against the public more severely than intra-professional transgressions. It is concluded that codes of ethics are not particularly strong in acknowledging and enforcing the corporate obligations of a profession. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Structural problems in mental health (MH) services conjoined with attitudinal barriers are the cause of inadequate MH care in South Africa. The major reason for the failure of psychology to address the needs of the majority lies in training deficiencies. In spite of the potential cost benefits of psychotherapy and prevention by way of counseling and educative interventions, psychologists are not perceived or employed as primary members of MH teams. In schools they are rapidly losing ground. The profession is disempowered to become a significant roleplayer in the new South Africa. Ways in which the state may help are suggested, including the creation of more posts and training opportunities in health care settings, and the use of the school as a locus for health and MH care delivery. The author concludes with a call to the profession to get its own house in order by way of self-regenerating actions in the areas of training, addressing political and cross-cultural issues, and service delivery. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Reports on a 1983 quality-of-life survey conducted by V. Møller and L. Schlemmer among 5,587 South Africans (834 Whites, 1,316 Indians, 970 Coloreds, and 2,467 Blacks). Results of interviews show that average satisfaction in the personal domain (relating to self, intimate life, and social interactions) was markedly lower among Blacks than all other groups. Being Black ranked among the 10 most important predictors of overall perceived well-being and had a negative influence. It is concluded that the perceived quality of life of Blacks fell far short of other South Africans, so that even the personal domain, usually immune to externalities, was affected. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
The post-apartheid South African government has in principle instituted a new language policy, which changes the country from one with two official languages to one in which there are eleven. The previously ignored indigenous languages are to have equal status with English and Afrikaans. This paper explores the views of some members of an indigenous language group about the language question. Two focus groups were conducted, with Zulu-speaking students at the University of Cape Town. One group contained only male students and the other female students. The discussions of the focus group were translated into English by the second researcher. The translations were thematically analyzed. Some of the themes that emerged in the discussions were issues such as the practicality of the language policy, the multiple versus single language debate, "tribalism," the meaning of language and its role in identity. In general, three major positions on the language issue were apparent, one favoring the increased status of the Zulu language, one favoring the pre-eminence of the English language, and one supporting a diglossia position. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Many Western-based AIDS education and prevention programmes have failed dismally in Africa and they may only succeed if traditional African beliefs and customs are taken into account. This article discusses relevant aspects of the traditional African worldview by explaining what health, sickness and sexuality mean in traditional Africa. Traditional African perceptions of causes of illness (including AIDS), perceptions of sexuality, and cultural beliefs inhibiting the usage of condoms are described in terms of the influence of the macro-cosmos (the ancestors), the meso-cosmos (witches and sorcerers) and the micro-cosmos (everyday life). The implications for AIDS education and prevention in Africa are discussed and suggestions are offered for the development of such programs. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Training programs in cross-cultural (CC) competencies have focused on 3 interrelated areas: knowledge, awareness, and skills. CC theorists have found that many Third World (TW) clients experience the values of counseling to be inconsistent with their life experiences. Owing to the influence of Western variables that operate as potential sources of conflict, such clients also often view therapy as an unknown, mystifying process. Due to the mismatch between Western psychology theory and the TW environment, the theory and practice of psychology in South Africa is said to reflect the therapist's encapsulation and lack of CC competencies. CC competencies are of significance for facilitating a meaningful therapeutic encounter and for the subsequent delivery of relevant psychological services. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
163 White, male, South African (SA) English-speaking managers (aged 25–55 yrs) from a diversity of disciplines, functional areas, and kinds of business and industry completed self-report scales on job demands, role stressors, and social support. Scores were compared with those of comparable US and Dutch samples. The SA mean of 48.9 working hrs/wk was similar to those of comparable groups. SA Ss showed a trend toward higher job demands, which was interpreted in terms of a shortage of high-level human resources, due to overutilization of Whites and underutilization of Blacks. The trend was toward greater role clarity in the SA Ss. More social support was reported than in the Dutch samples but less than in US samples. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Argues that indigenous psychology has a definite place in fostering better perceptions and understandings among psychologists in a pluralistic society such as South Africa. There has been a dearth of views from indigenous psychologists in this debate. Western viewpoints have held sway. The time is now ripe for African psychologists to tell their side of the story too, so as to contribute to the continuing quest for a psychology that is relevant to the needs and aspirations of all South Africans. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Studied suicides between January 1, 1975 and December 31, 1984 in a general hospital psychiatric inpatient unit—Addington Hospital, Durban, South Africa. Human subjects: Nine White adults (18–69 yrs). Out of a total of 6,961 admissions at risk for suicide during the 10-yr period, 3 females and 6 males committed suicide. The patients' hospital records were reviewed. Demographic and diagnostic data and data on other characteristics of the Ss were analyzed. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
A children's scale of social attitudes was administered to 167 White South African children. Compared to results obtained in Britain, South African Ss appeared to be significantly more conservative. South African Ss were also more religious and punitive, while South African boys were less ethnocentric. The intercorrelations between the 4 subscales were quite independent. (7 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Used a vignette methodology to examine the effects of varying a sexual assault offender's ascribed race and class on attributions of responsibility to the victim, sentencing judgments for the offender, and perceptions of the victim. Ss were White South African English-speaking university students. Ss were significantly more punitive toward an offender described as Black, and an offender described as working class, than an offender described as White. Attitudes toward the victim did not differ significantly across offender conditions. Women attributed feelings of stigmatization to the victim significantly more than men across all offender conditions, while men attributed such feelings significantly less when a White assailant was depicted. Results are discussed within the context of the interaction of race and class predjudice in apartheid society, and in relation to previous literature concerning attitudes toward rape. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Explores the potential role of educational, cognitive, and behavioral change strategies for the treatment of hypertension in South Africa. Strategies that can be used as an adjunct to, or in place of, medication include improving patients' adherence to treatment regimens, educating and training in weight reduction and smoking cessation, healthy dietary and exercise habits, and a range of cognitive and behavioral stress management techniques. Research is reviewed, mostly from Europe and the US, evaluating the effectiveness of these strategies, and their current status relative to the use of medication is examined. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Studied the psychosocial aspects of career counseling in the context of education for democracy and of high unemployment in a changing South African society. The imbalance of services and resources between privileged and disadvantaged sectors of South African society must be redressed. Training programs for career counselors (CCs) should be made more relevant to the specific social and educational needs of disadvantaged pupils. CCs should be trained to be client-centered by adopting modifications of sociological and psychological approaches that suit their clients and by studying the culture of disadvantaged pupils. Changes in prevailing practices require a paradigmatic shift for career counseling to be perceived in structural and societal terms, as well as in client-centered terms. CCs should also be trained to advise young people about seeking employment outside the formal sector. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
By making use of a metaphor derived from Mozart's opera Don Giovanni, the author indicates that there are many opportunities for psychologists in South Africa to become involved in some of the burning issues of the day, and that there is a great need for research investment in appropriate areas related to the societal problems that exist in the country. He expresses his concern about the possibility that psychology may become trivialized if the approach adopted becomes excessively academic. The issue of relevance in psychology is addressed in some detail, and he illustrates his concern and draws attention to priorities by means of examples related to policy, peace and international issues, the psychological impact of new technology, crime and violence, disability, and health delivery. © 1987, South African Psychological Association and the Psychological Institute of the Republic of South Africa. All rights reserved.
 
Evaluated 22 Black South African boys with a history of chronic glue sniffing who were currently not abusing solvents. The majority of Ss were 14–25 yrs old. Ss demonstrated multiple deficits that included visual–spatial difficulties, visual scanning problems, language deficiencies, motor incoordination, memory deficits, and attention and concentration problems. Two Ss had cerebellar signs, and the EEGs of 9 Ss were abnormal. 20 Ss came from backgrounds of extreme poverty and family disorganization. Personality profiles of the group and the circumstances that led to their solvent abuse are discussed. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
This article responds to the challenge implicit in the words ‘provisional draft’ appended to the title of the Ethical principles of Clinical Psychologists proposed for the SAICP by Steere and Wassenaar. An ethical code should be understood not only as a device for protecting and aiding the public but also as a way in which clinical psychology defines itself as a profession. It may even be the case that this second aspect of the code is the more powerful. The code rests on three assumptions: those of universalism, voluntarism and individualism, all of which can be viewed as relating to an underlying liberal ideology. The position of the clinical psychologist who does not accept this ideology is raised. Formalizing the code into anything more than a ‘provisional draft’ may obscure the historic specificity of the code and the particular views and interests it serves. © 1988, South African Psychological Association and the Psychological Institute of the Republic of South Africa. All rights reserved.
 
In this article, the author reviews South African research and literature concerning the consequences of teenage pregnancy, because it is on this level that teenage pregnancy is formulated as a problem. The literature is reviewed against the backdrop of some international research in order to provide a basis for comparison. Research on the disruption of schooling, socio-economic disadvantage, obstetric outcomes, inadequate mothering, neglect and abuse, relationship difficulties and demographic concerns is reviewed. Various gaps in the South African literature are identified. These include an inadequate theoretical grounding, a lack of gender and historical analyses, and no exploration of the power relations within which teenage pregnancy occurs. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved) http://sap.sagepub.com/content/29/1/1.abstract
 
Given the predominance of needs within the nonprivileged sector of South African society, 2 major issues face those who train in educational psychology: how to train in sufficient numbers and the content and process of training where relevance and effectiveness are in question. With 77% of the school population having only 1 educational psychologist available for every 30,000 pupils, the needs cannot be met only through the current highly specialized and protracted training. The concept of a dual model of training is developed in which mental health workers are also trained to meet cross-disciplinary, basic level needs. Process and content shifts in training at both levels are suggested to meet 3 major areas of need: special education and the needs of those with developmental and educational disabilities; underachievement in Black education; and problems resulting from the breakdown of families and effective parenting. (Afrikaans abstract) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
 
Top-cited authors
Ed Diener
  • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Anthony L. Pillay
  • University of KwaZulu-Natal
Deo. Strümpfer
  • University of Johannesburg
Sebastiaan Rothmann
  • North-West University
Mohamed Seedat
  • University of South Africa