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Lezione Magistrale: George A. Bonanno

Loss, Trauma, and Human Resilience: An Elementary Approach

Lezione magistrale in lingua inglese aperta a tutti gli studenti SFU.

Psychological resilience has become a popular concept, and as a result has taken on myriad and often overlapping meanings. To be a useful framework for psychological research and theory, I have argued that the study of resilience must explicitly reference each of four constituent temporal elements: (a) baseline or pre-adversity functioning, (b) the actual aversive circumstances, (c) post-adversity resilient outcomes, and (d) predictors of resilient outcomes. To illustrate these elements, I described research from my lab using latent trajectory modeling to identity prototypical trajectories of outcome, including resilience as well as chronic psychopathology, recovery, delayed difficulties, and improved functioning. We observed these trajectories in response to a range of PTEs, including bereavement, terrorist disaster, military combat, spinal cord injury, bio-epidemic, and cancer surgery. I will also describe our research on predictors of the resilience trajectory and devote particular attention to our research on various components of flexibility in coping and emotion regulation, as well as other resilience-promoting factors.


George A. Bonanno, Ph.D. is a Professor of Clinical Psychology, Director of the Loss, Trauma, and Emotion Lab, and Director of the Resilience Center for Veterans and Families at Columbia University’s Teachers College. Professor Bonanno’s interests center on the question of how human beings cope with loss, trauma and other forms of extreme adversity, with an emphasis on resilience and the salutary role of flexible emotion regulatory processes. Professor Bonanno’s empirical and theoretical work has for over 20 years centered on defining and documenting resilience in the face of loss or potential traumatic events, including disaster, loss, terrorist attack, bio-epidemic, traumatic injury, life-threatening injuries medical events, and military deployment, and on identifying the range of psychological and contextual variables that predict both psychopathological and resilient outcomes. His research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the U.S.-Israel Binational Science Foundation, and is featured in various print, television, and radio media. His most recent book is The Other Side of Sadness (Basic Books).


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