Jerome L. Singer's research while affiliated with Yale University and other places

Publications (95)

Article
Reflecting on more than a half century of research and clinical practice, we focus on one feature of the human condition, our ability to engage in mental imaginative representations. Our research deals with pretend play of children, and adult thought focusing on possible worlds, potential social interactions, stream of consciousness, and planful ac...
Article
Full-text available
Nearly 60 years ago, Jerome L. Singer launched a groundbreaking research program into daydreaming (Singer, 1955, 1975, 2009) that presaged and laid the foundation for virtually every major strand of mind wandering research active today (Antrobus, 1999; Klinger, 1999, 2009). Here we review Singer's enormous contribution to the field, which includes...
Chapter
Make-believe play in children starts from about two years of age with attachment to transitional objects, play with soft toys, or imaginary playmates. The roles of pretending and story-telling play contribute to enjoyment and to cognitive, social, and emotional skills. Adults are often the nurturers and enhancers of such play. The features of child...
Article
Theoretical conceptualisations of repression lead to the prediction that individuals who characteristically use repression as a defensive strategy should be less able to recall personal, real-life experiences associated with negative affect. Results of recent research are consistent with this prediction. It is possible, however, that these results...
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When William James laid out a vast agenda for a scientific discipline in his grand two-volume Principles of Psychology of 1890 (James, 1950), he placed chapters on consciousness and the self (Decartes’s je pense and je suis) toward the very beginning of this work. Since then there have been several waves of influence that have tended to cast consci...
Article
As they develop, preschool children make great strides in their ability to take and understand multiple perspectives, sometimes referred to as the development of a theory of mind. Recently, the role of pretend play in that development has been investigated. In the present study, 2 experiments were conducted with 85 preschoolers. Children were obser...
Article
Short 15 item scales are developed to measure three second-order factors found within the domain of inner experience, daydreaming, and fantasy encompassed by the Imaginal Processes Inventory. Scales are presented for Positive-Constructive Daydreaming, Guilt-Fear of Failure Daydreaming, and Poor Attentional Control. The measures are derived from a s...
Article
How one’s ongoing consciousness, one’s memories or daydreams may influence everyday ingenuity or literary creativity can be understood in the context of basic psychological research. This article reviews 60 years of the author’s and others’ psychometric, observational, and experimental studies that shed light on literary genres employing interior m...
Article
When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge. Children today are growing up in a type of environment that never existed before in human experience. In every home there is a little box which, in increasingly vivid color, provide...
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This study investigated the association between religious coping, mental health and the caring experience, as well as potential explanatory mechanisms, among 162 informal caregivers of terminally ill cancer patients. Regression analyses indicated that, controlling for socio-demographic variables, more use of positive religious coping strategies was...
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Can the early childhood play of preschoolers foreshadow the form and complexity of adult ongoing consciousness? The beginnings of make-believe play in children from about two years of age are reviewed starting with transitional objects, play with soft toys, or imaginary playmates. The roles of pretending and story-telling play are next examined and...
Article
VioLit summary: OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study by Singer et al. was to examine the ways in which children's family life and TV viewing combine to predict aspects of their conscious experience as well as their social interaction patterns and behavior. METHODOLOGY: A quasi-experimental design was employed using 63 children whose average age was...
Article
In honor of Saul Rosenzweig's lifelong efforts to provide empirical tests of psychoanalytic theories, this paper has focused on a series of research approaches to examining the concepts of William James and Sigmund Freud relating to waking fantasy, ongoing thought, and beliefs about the self. Studies involving projective methods, psychometric analy...
Article
The theory of successful intelligence developed and tested by Robert Sternberg attempts to predict success in life across analytical, creative, and practical dimensions. This article presents the theory of successful intelligence as a useful framework for incorporating various psychotherapy techniques. Application of the theory has effectively trai...
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A theoretical discussion concerning the meaning of media literacy and the rationale for targeting such a topic to children is presented. Based on the research demonstrating negative effects of television viewing by children, the need for schools to teach critical thinking about popular media is then discussed. Goals of curricula in general are list...
Article
When young children appear to recognize that someone else is engaging in make-believe play, do they infer what the pretender is thinking? Are they aware that the pretender is thinking about a pretend scenario yet knows what the real situation is? Preschoolers ages 3-5 (N = 45) viewed scenes from the Barney & Friends television series depicting eith...
Article
Examined the relationships between measures of personality (the NEO-FFI), Emotionality (Positive and Negative), and Daydreaming (the Short Imaginal Processes Inventory [SIPI]) to assess hypotheses about private experience, behavioral and affective tendencies. 103 college students (aged 18–38 yrs) completed questionnaires. As predicted, Positive-Con...
Article
ABSTRACT This article describes a semantic space model of personality. According to the model, representations of facets of the self (e.g., actual self, self) and of others are arrayed in a semantic space, with proximities among representations predicted to be associated with mood, self-evaluation, broad personality dimensions. The relation of prox...
Article
A brief cognitive–behavioral intervention, based on Higgins's self-discrepancy theory, is described, and a case report of its use with a cocaine-dependent patient is provided. Self-discrepancy theory states that discrepancies among current and desired self-representations form cognitive schemas, which, when activated, produce negative emotional sta...
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Full-text available
Repressive personality style has often been identified as an important variable governing a variety of individual differences. There is debate, however, concerning the mechanisms by which this style is expressed. One hypothesis suggests that threatening information, after encoding, is suppressed from awareness. Another theory maintains that threate...
Article
In an exploration of changes that occur with initiation of cocaine abstinence, this study examined treatment outcomes in four domains--behavior (cocaine use), affect (depression), cognition (schematic self-representations), and psychophysiology (reactivity to drug cues). Nineteen patients initially entered this 8-week outpatient psychopharmacothera...
Article
In an application of self-discrepancy theory to addiction, the self-representations of cocaine users ( n = 29) were compared to those of methadone-maintained patients ( n = 30) and non-drug-users ( n = 27). Cocaine users had higher Beck depression scores than non-users, and the content of their self-representations was more dysphoric than either no...
Article
Within the context of treatment outcome research in the oncology setting, the authors propose a model that integrates the models of responsibility developed by P. Brickman et al (see record 1982-30315-001), W. T. Powers's (1973) control theory, and E. T. Higgins's (1989) self-discrepancy theory. This integrative approach is patient-centered in its...
Article
A research programme designed to find ways of applying a variety of methods in psychological science to studying the seemingly ephemeral phenomena of the human stream of consciousness and its manifestations in daydreams, interior monologues, imagery and related private experiences is described. Approaches include psychometric studies to establish n...
Article
The present research was designed to investigate the proposition that repressors, operationally defined by the conjunction of low anxiety and high defensiveness, are particularly adept at avoiding the processing of information when motivated to do so. Four groups of participants (nondefensive-low anxious, high anxious, repressors, and defensive-hig...
Article
review a range of phenomena that characterize relatively conscious thought and . . . examine some of the major methodologies for exploring individual variations in such private experiences put some stress on Jung's model because, more than Freud's, it lends itself to an examination of individual differences in both public and private representati...
Article
A sample of 66 kindergartners and first graders was studied over a two-year period in order to determine the role of family communication patterns and parent mediation in relation to television comprehension, general world knowledge, reading recognition, discrimination of reality from fantasy, fear of victimization, motor restlessness, and aggressi...
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This article represents a tribute to the late Helen Block Lewis's commitment to integrating psychology and psychoanalysis. The current status of the formal structure of psychoanalytic theory was reviewed in relation to recent developments in general psychology. Specific attention was paid to the psychodynamic or motivational perspective, the struct...
Article
A sample of kindergarten and first-grade children was studied in a research center and at school to determine the extent to which family communication mediated their comprehension of television, as well as a series of cognitive skills necessary for such comprehension. Separate analyses were conducted for boys and girls, and results indicated that c...
Article
This article examines some of the ways television may influence the imagination, motor activity, and aggressiveness of preschool and early school-aged children. A model is proposed in which a number of family and personal variables influences the growing child's response to television. The results of several empirical studies that investigated fami...
Article
Studies with preschool and early school-age children have examined the links between the patterns of family communication, parental discipline, the children's television-viewing, and their emotional behavior or attitudes. It is proposed that family styles, especially the degree to which parents discuss and interpret the world for children, are impo...
Article
A sample of kindergarten and first-grade children was studied in a research center and at school to determine the extent to which family communication mediated their comprehension of television, as well as a series of cognitive skills necessary for such comprehension. Results indicate that, even when intelligence is controlled for, several cognitiv...
Article
It was proposed that cognitive processes during a relatively “objective” auditory signal detection experiment might reflect the influence of immediately preceding interpersonal contact between the participant and experimenter as well as the longstanding thinking style or current concerns brought by the subject to the situation. Thirty-three Ss subj...
Article
Investigated the role of parental orientations, family lifestyle, and children's TV viewing as predictors of 3 measures of imaginative behavior in 31 male and 32 female 8-yr-olds. Estimates of Ss' imaginatives were obtained by human movement responses to inkblots, an imagination interview, and block play fantasy. Multiple regression analyses for Ss...
Article
Full-text available
Examined the relative effectiveness of positive-imagery and active-involvement imagery in the systematic desensitization treatment of 25 phobia patients (aged 25–51 yrs). Ss were randomly assigned to either a positive-imagery group, an active-involvement imagery group, or a waiting-list control group. Immediately after imagining hierarchy phobic sc...
Article
Reflecting the reemergence of interest in conscious experience that characterizes modern psychology, this article examines a range of issues that are part of the study of the private personality. It is proposed that in formulating a model of individual differences in ongoing conscious experience, we must consider the basic systems through which inf...
Article
( The following abstract of this reprinted article originally appeared in PA, Vol 71:6304.) Addresses issues concerning the continuing exposure of children to TV that require examination by cognitive, developmental, and personality psychologists. Studies dealing with structural format and content of commercial TV and the possible influences on deve...
Article
Discusses problems posed by television violence; how behavioral and social scientists became interested in television violence and its effects on children; how psychologists study relationships between television violence and behavior; how television violence can be counteracted by television industry, parents, and educators; and results from the Y...
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Addresses issues concerning the continuing exposure of children to TV that require examination by cognitive, developmental, and personality psychologists. Studies dealing with structural format and content of commercial TV and the possible influences on developing children are reviewed. Cognitive and affective issues include the rapid pace of prese...
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The paper examines whether television enriches a child's imagination, leads to distortions of reality, and whether adult mediation while a child views a program or immediately after can evoke constructive changes or stimulate make‐believe play.
Article
This paper explores the uses of imagery within behavioral and cognitive-behavioral clinical interventions. The nature of imagery as a central human phenomenon is first examined and then recent theoretical models of the role of imagery in therapy are reviewed and evaluated critically. A trend towards broader conceptualizations of the role of imagery...
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A methodology for mapping the structure and organization of subjective experience via the retrospective completion of a self-report inventory, the Phenomenology of Consciousness Questionnaire (PCQ), is presented. The development of the questionnaire is discussed along with its refinement by cluster and factor analyses. The usefulness of this approa...
Article
A growing body of empirical literature suggests that daydreaming and related forms of waking reverie are natural-occurring, common experiences in normal individuals. Specific experiments relating daydreaming and the stream of ongoing thought as an alternative source of stimulation to external cues are described. It is proposed that everyday waking...
Article
Reviews conclusions from research papers prepared for the National Institute of Mental Health Report, Television and Behavior (referred to as the Update). The two-volume Update summarizes research findings of the past 10 years dealing with the effects of television viewing on its audience, particularly children. (JJD)
Article
When clinicians refer to adult imagery or fantasies they are generally somewhat imprecise in terminology. Probably for scientific purposes it is best to view imagery as a function closely allied to perceptual processes, a basic capacity to reduplicate information gathered through specific sensory modalities. Thus, we can have auditory images or tac...
Article
One hundred and fifty-five third, fourth, and fifth grade children were assessed in terms of their racial and sex-role attitudes, family's television viewing habits, and demographic background. Stepwise multiple regression analyses indicate that children's and parents' viewing of specific types of television programs predict children's racial preju...
Article
Obtained imaginative play predispositions for 87 3–4 yr old preschoolers from interviews with Ss and parents, the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test, and the Barron Movement Threshold Inkblot series. Ss' play behavior was observed during nursery school free play periods on 8 occasions over 1 yr. Factor analyses, performed on a set of 33 variables rela...
Chapter
The importance of a psychological study of man’s consciousness was affirmed by no less a psychologist than Ivan Pavlov: Psychology, in so far as it concerns the subjective state of man, has a natural right to existence; for our subjective world is the first reality with which we are confronted. (Pavlov, 1927 p. 329)
Article
Three groups of preschoolers were exposed over two weeks to daily programs of Misterogers Neighborhood, Sesame Street, or a control series of nature and animal films. Specific hypotheses about the effects of program format upon recall of content and upon subsequent behavior were tested. The apparently more slow-paced format and other characteristic...
Chapter
Many of the data for the early and highly influential formulations in personality and psychodynamic psychology came from the study of neurotic and psychotic individuals. The analysis of the conflicts and defenses of these troubled people was almost always cast in terms of negative affects. One long-standing result of this strong precedent has been...
Article
As part of a larger 1-year examination of the relationship between television viewing patterns and spontaneous play in nursery school, this study focuses on (1) the correlation between children's television viewing patterns in the home and their level of aggression in nursery school, and (2) specific factors within family settings that might determ...
Article
This study examined the ways in which the spontaneous imaginative play and other social behaviors of 3- and 4-year-old children are affected by the frequency and patterns of their television viewing. The subjects were 141 children from predominantly white middle class homes. Pretesting was done to get an estimate of IQ (Peabody Picture Vocabulary T...
Article
Argues that imagery represents a major system in the brain's encoding and transformation of information. Among topics covered are the clinical uses of imagery; the relationship among imagery, fantasy, and other basic psychological processes; specific uses of imagery in preventive therapy, hospital treatment, and self-development strategies; and an...
Chapter
Consciousness—that familiar constellation of memories, sensations, plans, fantasies, fleeting images, and sometimes unrecognizable forms that constitutes our awareness from moment to moment—has received rough treatment at the hands of 20th-century American psychology. Neither the elaborate Titchnerian method of introspection nor the stirring, grace...
Book
For at least half of the twentieth century, psychology and the other mental health professions all but ignored the significant adaptive pos­ sibilities of the human gift of imagery. Our capacity seemingly to duplicate sights, sounds, and other sensory experiences through some form of central brain process continues to remain a mysterious, alma st m...
Chapter
The stream of consciousness—that flow of perceptions, purposeful thoughts, fragmentary images, distant recollections, bodily sensations, emotions, plans, wishes, and impossible fantasies—is our experience of life, our own personal life, from its beginning to its end. As scientists, we may approach the subject for the joy of discovering how it works...
Article
Discusses stream of consciousness from various perspectives, including the history of approaches to the area; a comparison of the viewpoints of different cultures, eras, and disciplines; and current scientific investigations in relation to biological rhythms, solitude, day and night dreaming, gender, attention, and problem solving. A description of...
Chapter
Psychology has displayed much more prudishness about the stream of consciousness than it ever did about sex. The Victorians went so far as to cover the legs of the piano to avoid, when speaking of furniture, mentioning the words “leg” or “foot” so as not to raise sexual connotations. This strikes most of us as pretty silly today, and yet, as we stu...
Chapter
Perhaps symbolic of some deep irony in the history of psychology, the death of William James in 1910 coincided with the dramatic emergence of behaviorism in American psychology and with the turn from sensitive introspection toward a kind of mindless but well-documented motor responsiveness that characterized behaviorism. The young psychologists who...
Article
This study evaluates fantasy play training and perceptual-motor intervention methods which temporarily increased the imaginative behavior of severely emotionally-disturbed, hospitalized children. Increases in imaginative behavior were accompanied by positive changes in body image and by affective and social gains. Implications for further developme...
Article
This research study examined ways in which exposure to a children's television show (Misterogers' Neighborhood) would enhance the spontaneous imaginative play of children after several weeks. The project, which is detailed extensively elsewhere, involved a comparison of three groups of preschool children in a day care center who either: (1) watched...
Article
This study represents part of an extended research program designed to explore the various parameters of imaginative play in children and their relationship to the later development of daydreaming and various cognitive skills or personality characteristics. The specific focus of this investigation was on role of adult intervention represented eithe...
Article
address some recent relevant theory, research methods, and findings concerning awareness of a person's own stream of conscious mental activity and of how some individuals seek to gain control of or to modify their ongoing images and thoughts / focus primarily upon the issues of control / a major thesis of the approach that we present in this chapte...
Article
Dorothy Singer is Research Scientist at Yale University and Jerome Singer is Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Psychology at Yale University. Together they are co-directors of the Yale University Family Television Research and Consultation Center. This is an edited transcription of a day-long series of talks and workshops they gave at S...

Citations

... 2.2.4 Play, private speech and self-regulation Vygotsky (1978) considers sociodramatic playas crucial for cognitive, social, and emotional development (see examples from Singer and Singer 1990;Garvey 1976Garvey ,1977Garvey , 1990Smilansky 1968) and proposes that children, when they play, actively organize stimuli into patterns that allow for understanding and regulation of behaviour in accord with social norms. Self-regulation develops in the imaginary context of sociodramatic playas children learn to separate thought and action from external stimuli and rely on ideas to guide behaviour. ...
... school lives (Beavis 2014) and promote students' creativity (Verenikina and Kervin 2011;Singer and Singer 2006). Digital games can enhance students' social skills (Apperley & Beavis 2013) and are beneficial for problem-solving skills (Li and Tsai 2013). ...
... In line with this work, several researchers have noted that the inherent schema disruption associated with impossible experiences is likely to boost creative thinking (e.g., Ritter et al., 2012;Li, 2020;Wiseman, Wiles & Watt, 2021). Indeed, some psychologists have argued that such experiences may be especially effective at enhancing creativity because they appear to violate people's fundamental assumptions about themselves and the world (e.g., Singer & Singer, 1990;Rosengren, Johnson & Harris, 2000;Subbotsky, 2010;Bulkeley, 2016). Researchers working in a diverse range of domains have carried out studies and collected anecdotal evidence relevant to this idea. ...
... Eine solche Richtung der Problemherleitung entspricht sogar besser den genetischen Prioritätsverhältnissen" (Rausch, 1982, S. 33 Ich habe diese alltäglichen Beispiele bewusst deshalb ausgewählt, weil vor allem im psychologischen und pädagogischen Bereich oft eine einseitig pathologisierende Betrachtung solcher Phänomene vorherrscht -ich erwähne nur ADHS, Asperger-Syndrom, die berühmte "gespaltene Persönlichkeit", Dissoziation und dergleichen -und dann nach Krankheitsursachen und Behandlungstechniken gesucht wird, noch bevor gut verstanden wurde, was hier überhaupt vor sich geht und womit wir es zu tun haben. Ähnliches können wir heute in Bereichen erleben, in denen aus verschiedenen Perspektiven verwandte Phänomene erforscht werden -hier führe ich die Forschungen zur "wandernden Aufmerksamkeit" (mind-wandering), zum Imaginieren und zum Tagträumen an. 3 In dem von mir vorgeschlagenen Mehr-Felder-Ansatz 4 stehen demgegenüber andere, unserer Auffassung nach grundlegendere Fragen im Mittelpunkt: 3 Siehe Tart, 1975, Singer, 1974, Pope & Singer, 1978, Smallwood & Schooler, 2006zum Mind-Wandering: Ergas, 2017, Mooneyham & Schooler, 2013Daydreaming: Hopkins, 2013; Imaginieren zur Förderung von Lernprozessen: Ludwig, 1999. 4 Zum Mehr-Felder-Ansatz siehe Stemberger, , 2009bStemberger, , 2014Stemberger, , 2015; zu verschiedenen Anwendungsbereichen des Mehr-Felder-Ansatzes siehe u.a. ...
... Seli, Risko, and Smilek (2016) found that people sometimes engage in deliberate mind wandering, but did not examine whether the people's goal was to improve their affect or whether they were successful at doing so. Much has been written about daydreaming (e.g., Klinger, 1990;Pope & Singer, 1978;Singer, 1975;Smallwood & Schooler, 2006), but little about how successful people are at intentionally using daydreams to improve their mood. McMillan, Kaufman, and Singer (2013) termed this intentional use "volitional daydreaming," and noted that there is very little research on the topic. ...
... In Canada, children spend approximately 40 h per week on screen (Picard, 2012). The average time children spend on viewing TV increases steadily during the elementary school years, and it reaches a peak of three to five hours daily at age 12 (Zuckerman, Singer, & Singer, 1980). Apparently, if children spend a minimum of seven hours at school and six hours watching television each day, they have little time for doing homework at home. ...
... However, an association with openness has previously been reported. Zhiyan and Singer [72] investigated big five correlates of three 'styles of daydreaming' identified from second-order factor analysis of responses to the Imaginal Processes Inventory [49,73]. They found that the 'positive-constructive' style (frequent, vivid, and generally enjoyable daydreams) is most strongly associated with openness; the 'guilty-dysphoric' style (mixed heroic/achievement and failure/guilt daydreams) is most strongly associated with neuroticism; and the 'poor attentional-control' style (more mind wandering, more experience of boredom, and less sense of control) is most strongly associated with less conscientiousness (and more neuroticism). ...
... As a case in point, psychologists have long been studying the processes by which individuals envision the future and correspondingly regulate their behavior to decide what path to pursue to bring a certain future about. Imagination is a process that is found in children's play (Singer, 1979), problem solving (Crandall, Klein, and Hoffman, 2006), and planning (Hayes-Roth and Hayes-Roth, 1979). Imagination involves conjecturing as well as projecting and comprises mental activities through which people get a sense of how to get from the present to an envisioned point in the future and what needs to be done to achieve this (Taylor, Pham, Rivkin, and Armor, 1998). ...
... Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire -FFMQ (Baer et al., 2006); with "Observing" factor used. (4) Embodiment Questionnaire -EQ (Aymerich-Franch et al., 2015); with "Ownership", "Self-Location" and "Agency" factors used. (5) The Sense of Body -SB (an in-house questionnaire, following Pope & Singer, 1978;Winget, & Kramer, 1979); with "Body Image", "Body Perception" and "Body Orientation" factors used. (6) The Sense of Time (ST) and Thought Speed (TS) (another in-house questionnaire, following Pope & Singer, 1978;Winget, & Kramer, 1979); with "Here and Now", "Future", "Past", "Concatenation of Thoughts", "Continuity of Thoughts" and "Speed of Thoughts" factors used. ...
... Betts, 1909; Sheehan, 1967), Marks' Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (VVIO; Marks, 1973), and Gordon's Test of Visual Imagery Control (TV!C; Gordon, 1949). Analyses of data derived from these questionnaires have yielded a number of interesting facts concerning the phenomenal experience of mental imagery (for recent reviews, see Sheehan, Ashton, & White, 1983; Tower & Singer, 1981; White, Sheehan, & Ashton, 1977). For example, there appears to be a strong get. ...