Images of Disintegration and Integration in Psychosis and Schizophrenia

  • Vija Bergs Lusebrink
Part of the Emotions, Personality, and Psychotherapy book series (EPPS)


Visual expressions in schizophrenia reflect disturbances both in form and cognitive processes. They also represent regression to earlier and more primitive modes of expression. The cognitive secondary elaborations give way to direct expressiveness of the elementary forms of perception and the process of imagery formation. The disconnection between the different levels of information processing and representation is distinct and often irreversible in schizophrenia, whereas the transition between levels is rapid in the acute phase of the schizophreniform disorder. The spontaneous visual expressions in schizophreniform disorder and schizophrenia become a rich source for observing the structure and functions of imagery. A study of the verbal reports of imagery indicated that the imagery distortion is significantly higher in subjects with schizophrenic characteristics as compared to psychopathological nonschizophrenics and normal control subjects. Imagery distortions were defined as the occurrence of an unexpected spontaneous addition or change in the image, surprising the individual (Lanyon & May, 1979).


Body Image Schizophrenic Patient Symbolic Meaning Paranoid Ideation Visual Expression 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vija Bergs Lusebrink
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA

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