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A Developmental Theory of Personality Producing Two Time Orientations

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This paper describes a theory of genetically determined personality development, including the development of two mutually exclusive time orientations: alphas preferentially relate to their present, often being inattentive to their past and future; betas preferentially relate to their future and past, and tend to be inattentive to their present. These time orientations or perspectives derive from two types of autobiographic memory materializing around age 6, which cause two types of personality. For example, the theory views alphas as extroverted and betas as introverted although there are significant differences between Jung's view of these traits and the theory's definitions. Beginning at birth, the amalgam of inborn motivational contexts induces a context-specific partitioning of reality. This is left intact when an alpha child's autobiographic memory, which is free of trans-contextual sequencing of memories, becomes active and the child's identity becomes therefore multi-focal (situational), as represented by Jung's personality model. By contrast, a beta child spontaneously produces a trans-contextual sequence of memories. The youngster's partitioned reality fuses, leading to a singular, monofocal identity, as represented by Freud's personality model. Self-reflection in adolescence makes both implicit identities self-conscious. The underlying genes possibly belong to the X-chromosome, the alpha gene being dominant and the beta gene recessive.


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