Gordon Allport

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Gordon Allport 2 Abstract Gordon Allport (1897-1967) was one of the very first American psychologists who studied personality traits through a humanistic approach. This paper will go into further detail of Allport's concepts and theories. Articles including some of Allport's own case studies and writings were used for this paper. There is also information retrieved through articles of study on Gordon Allport's life and his work. Some questioned the work of Allport and were critical, while others pursued to find a meaning behind Allport and his work.

Gordon Allport 3 Gordon Allport and his Theories in Humanistic PsychologyGordon Allport combined psychology and social ethics in his own view of humanistic psychology. He was one of the very first American psychologists who studied personality traits and he influenced many other significant personality theorists. Allport's theories have been widely used and have been considered some of the leading theories in personality traits.

He brought on a new meaning to traits that was not regarded by other theorists previous to him. It is believed that much of his work is related to his own life experiences. His background in the field of social ethics led him to argue that although personality was psychologically constructed, character was an ethical construction (Nicholson, 1997). Allport was also strongly influenced by his religious family background and often had an eager sense of philosophical questing and religious answers. According to Nicholson (1997), Gordon Allport is seen by many as more of an eclectic or open theorist.

Allport believed that personality was an evolving structure within an individual psychophysical system that determined characteristic behavior and thought. He defined traits as structures within a person that influence behavior and he distinguished between individual traits and common traits, which he later called personal dispositions to clarify uniqueness among each...