An interpersonal perspective is essential for understanding personality disorders, or maladaptive and inflexible patterns of perceiving and relating to oneself and one's environment. This chapter reviews current theories of personality disorders, including their relationship to major theories of normal personality (especially interpersonally oriented perspectives, such as object relations and attachment theories). We discuss the development, longitudinal course, and taxonomies of personality disorders. In addition, the chapter describes fundamental disturbances of personality in the domains of understanding of self and others that seem to relate to personality disorders and psychotherapeutic treatment of personality disorders that targets these areas of dysfunction. © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.
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