Types of Personality: A Factorial Study of Seven Hundred Neurotics

H. J. Eysenck

Summary and Conclusions

Seven hundred neurotic soldiers, unselected except for the omission of all cases in which there were signs of physical injury of illness having a bearing on the neurosis, were rated by the psychiatrists in charge on 38 traits; scores on an intelligence test were also available. These 39 variables were intercorrelated, and the resulting matrix of 741 correlations factor analysed. The following results emerged from this study:

  1. Four factors, one with positive saturations only, the other three with both positive and negative saturations, accounted for 40 per cent, of the variance.

  2. The first factor extracted accounted for 14 per cent, of the variance, and was identified as a general factor of neuroticism, instability, or lack of integration.

  3. The second, bipolar factor accounted for 12 per cent, of the variance, and was identified as a general factor of introversion, desurgency, or inhibition, dividing the patients into an hysterical and an affective group.

  4. The third, bipolar factor accounted for 8 per cent, of the variance, and was identified as a general factor of hypochondriasis or neurasthenia, dividing traits stressing preoccupation with the health of the body from traits of a more psychological type.

  5. The fourth, bipolor factor accounted for 6 per cent, of the variance, and seemed to be of little general interest. it divided the men examined into a social misfit group on the one hand, and a psychological conflict group on the other.

  6. Evidence from work on questionnaires, ratings, experimental studies and animal studies was found to corroborate the existence of the two factors of integration and inhibition; these factors were also shown to fit in will with the conceptual framework of clinical and academic psychology.