Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

2013 Edition
| Editors: Marc D. Gellman, J. Rick Turner

Hostility, Cynical

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1005-9_255
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Synonyms

Definition

Hostility is a relatively stable personality trait that is typically characterized as a multidimensional construct with significant affective (e.g., anger), cognitive (e.g., attitudes), and behavioral (e.g., aggression) components. Hostile individuals have a suspicious, mistrustful attitude and often disparaging view of others and generally have a cynical worldview of their environment and social interactions. Thus, this type of personality disposition is often referred to “cynical hostility.”

An expansive literature on personality and disease processes and health risks has developed over the past 50–60 years. Hostility has featured prominently in this literature, particularly with regard to cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk (Miller, Smith, Turner, Guijarro, & Hallet, 1996; Everson-Rose & Lewis, 2005). Though some negative studies have been reported, on balance, the available evidence from methodologically strong,...

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References and Readings

  1. Barefoot, J. C., Dodge, K. A., Dahlstrom, W. G., Siegler, I. C., Anderson, N. B., & Williams, R. B., Jr. (1991). Hostility patterns and health implications: Correlates of Cook-Medley Hostility Scale scores in a national survey contact and ability to predict survival. Health Psychology, 10, 18–24.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Barefoot, J. C., Dodge, K. A., Peterson, B. L., Dahlstrom, W. G., & Williams, R. B., Jr. (1989). The Cook-Medley hostility scale: Item contact and ability to predict survival. Psychosomatic Medicine, 51, 46–57.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Barnes, L. L., Mendes de Leon, C. F., Bienias, J. L., Wilson, R. S., Everson-Rose, S. A., & Evans, D. A. (2009). Hostility and change in cognitive functions over time in older blacks and whites. Psychosomatic Medicine, 71, 652–658.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Everson, S. A., Kauhanen, J., Kaplan, G. A., Goldberg, D. E., Julkunen, J., Tuomilehto, J., et al. (1997). Hostility and increased risk of mortality and acute myocardial infarction: The mediating role of behavioral risk factors. American Journal of Epidemiology, 146, 142–152.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  8. Kubzansky, L. D., Sparrow, D., Jackson, B., Cohen, S., Weiss, S. T., & Wright, R. J. (2006). Angry breathing: A prospective study of hostility and lung function in the Normative Aging Study. Thorax, 61, 863–868.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Miller, T. Q., Smith, T. W., Turner, C. W., Guijarro, M. L., & Hallet, A. J. (1996). A metaanalytic review of research on hostility and physical health. Psychological Bulletin, 119, 322–348.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Niaura, R., Todaro, J. F., Stroud, L., Spiro, A., 3rd, Ward, K. D., & Weiss, S. (2002). Hostility, the metabolic syndrome, and incident coronary heart disease. Health Psychology, 21, 588–593.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Shen, B. J., Countryman, A. J., Spiro, A., 3rd, & Niaura, R. (2008). The prospective contribution of hostility characteristics to high fasting glucose levels: The moderating role of marital status. Diabetes Care, 31, 1293–1298.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA