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Rubin, T.I. (1990). The Transitional Personality: Dislocation as a Major Character Dynamic. Am. J. Psychoanal., 50(1):1-10.

(1990). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 50(1):1-10

The Transitional Personality: Dislocation as a Major Character Dynamic

Theodore Isaac Rubin, M.D.

Our species is capable of a vast range of adaptational inventions necessary to survive environmental demands. These changes include personality structure and its myriad values, pride investment, relating methods, and various coping mechanisms and systems. Pride investments and the images they support have a capacity for radical shifts.

Since Karen Horney first conceptualized a neurotic personality of her time, vast changes affecting the human condition have taken place. Indeed, some fifty years ago it would have been impossible to predict the extraordinary rate of change as well as the resultant quantum changes that have taken place.

Additionally, the birth of almost entirely new cultural or environmental influences have made for interesting and important accommodations and adaptations in terms of human personality. Perhaps one of the most significant adaptive needs has been to accommodate to rapid change itself or to process rather than to traditional institutions, systems, and stasis of any kind.

In the last fifty to seventy-five years I believe a kind of ever-shifting or kinetic personality has been evolving. This personality type will, in significant part, eventually replace previous personality types and will be sustained for many years.

It is entirely possible that the roots of this manifestation can be found in the beginning days of the industrial revolution or even earlier. I believe that the process of its development speeded up considerably at about the time of America's emergence as an industrial power in the mid-1800s. But real quantum leaps in cultural influences and personality changes have probably occurred since Horney wrote her great book, The Neurotic Personality of Our Time.

In this paper I want to introduce the transitional personality. In subsequent papers I will attempt to extend our understanding of description, origin, dynamics, and possibilities for special treatment when necessary. The transitional personality is of course a product of our culture and produces its own culture and values as it evolves.

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