Major Theories of Personality Disorder

Second Edition

Edited by Mark F. Lenzenweger and John F. Clarkin

November 5, 2004
ISBN 9781593851088
Price: $80.00
464 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"

Now in a fully revised and expanded second edition, this landmark work brings together in one volume the most important current perspectives on personality pathology. Chapters from leading experts have been extensively rewritten to reflect a decade's worth of significant theoretical, empirical, and clinical developments, and two entirely new chapters have been added. Coverage encompasses psychodynamic, interpersonal, attachment, ecological, psychometric, and neurobiological models, all presented in a consistent format to facilitate ready reference and comparison. The volume also explores similarities and differences among the various theories, identifies potential avenues of integration, and discusses key implications for research and clinical care.

“Tightly packed with information about the leading theories of personality disorder....Researchers in the study of personality disorders and therapists of all descriptions will find this edition a useful and substantial resource for the informed understanding of the complexities of personality function and dysfunction, as well as a comprehensive reference source.”

Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic

“The volume will appeal to a wide audience. Newcomers to the field will benefit from comprehensive introductions to major theoretical approaches to etiology, classification and treatment of personality disorder. Established researchers will find discussions of current research, framed in theoretical context. Clinicians will value the practical implications of each of the major theoretical models....The eight chapters provide a theoretically sophisticated and empirically informed grand tour of Personality Disorder. Researchers and practitioners alike will find their current thinking challenged in an intellectually stimulating way by the diverse theoretical formulations and empirical support offered by the authors. The book would also provide an outstanding backdrop for a graduate course on Personality Disorder that aims to integrate the science of personality disorder with assessment and treatment.”

Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology

“This is an impressive group of researchers, and the depth of the thinking and analysis of the current problems in theory and technique make this an important contribution to the literature. Importantly, the authors address the primary problem today in personality disorder research: how to develop a coherent and comprehensive theory of causation and treatment of personality disorders....This book articulates the key issues and questions we need to answer. It outlines the essential elements which any comprehensive multidimensional theory of personality disorders must now include.”


“This superb volume offers an up-to-date presentation of the major theoretical approaches to disorders of personality. Aside from including more recent neurobiological thinking, this edition benefits from the ability of such major theorists as Otto Kernberg and Aaron T. Beck to continue to revise their theories in the light of new data, and to present their theories concisely and with clarity.”

—Drew Westen, PhD, Department of Psychology and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University

“This second edition continues to challenge received wisdom as to what the major theories of personality are, treating both personality theory and its uses in the service of informing the practices of psychotherapy as open concepts. Psychopathologists and clinicians will find plenty to expand their horizons, and personologists will be alerted to the dynamic changes from evidence-based research in their own territory.”

—Irving I. Gottesman, PhD, Hon FRCPsych, Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota

“This second edition represents a major revision of the original, and, more importantly, it continues to distinguish this work as the authoritative reference on the topic. Lenzenweger and Clarkin have assembled many of the world’s leading authorities on personality pathology to present a superb array of theories. The contributors cover the waterfront, with models ranging from neurobiological to interpersonal. The volume remains peerless and will surely engage readers at all levels of expertise.”

—Dante Cicchetti, PhD, Mt. Hope Family Center, Rochester, New York

“Lenzenweger and Clarkin have produced a book that provides outstandingly useful information for researchers and students of personality theory and psychopathology, as well as for the clinician dealing with the personality disorders in a practical setting. They have assembled comprehensive chapters by experts in the theories concerned, together with thoughtful discussion about the directions in which future research might progress. This combination of theory, practice, and research is of critical value. It belongs on the desk of every serious student of psychopathology and personality.”

—Brendan A. Maher, PhD, DrPhil, Department of Psychology, Harvard University

Table of Contents


1. The Personality Disorders: History, Classification, and Research Issues, Mark F. Lenzenweger and John F. Clarkin

2. A Cognitive Theory of Personality Disorders, James L. Pretzer and Aaron T. Beck

3. A Psychoanalytic Theory of Personality Disorders, Otto F. Kernberg and Eve Caligor

4. Interpersonal Theory of Personality Disorders: The Structural Analysis of Social Behavior and Interpersonal Reconstructive Therapy, Lorna Smith Benjamin

5. An Attachment Model of Personality Disorders, Björn Meyer and Paul A. Pilkonis

6. A Contemporary Integrative Interpersonal Theory of Personality Disorders, Aaron L. Pincus

7. Personology: A Theory Based on Evolutionary Concepts, Theodore Millon and Seth D. Grossman

8. A Neurobehavioral Dimensional Model of Personality Disturbance, Richard A. Depue and Mark F. Lenzenweger

About the Editors

Mark F. Lenzenweger, PhD, is Professor of Clinical Science, Cognitive Psychology, and Behavioral Neuroscience in the Department of Psychology at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Binghamton and Adjunct Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York City. He also directs the Laboratory of Experimental Psychopathology at SUNY–Binghamton, where he conducts research and teaches on personality disorders, schizophrenia, schizotypy, and statistical methods.

John F. Clarkin, PhD, is Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University and Director of Psychology and Co-Director of the Personality Disorders Institute at New York–Presbyterian Hospital. His academic writing and research have focused on the phenomenology of the personality disorders and the treatment of patients with borderline personality disorder.


Aaron T. Beck, MD, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

Lorna Smith Benjamin, PhD, Department of Psychology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT

Eve Caligor, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons; Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, New York, NY

John F. Clarkin, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, Weill-Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY, and Personality Disorders Institute, The New York-Presbyterian Hospital, White Plains, NY

Richard A. Depue, PhD, Laboratory of Neurobiology of Temperament and Personality, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Seth D. Grossman, PhD, Institute for Advanced Studies in Personology and Psychopathology, Miami, FL

Otto F. Kernberg, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Weill-Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY; Personality Disorders Institute, The New York-Presbyterian Hospital, White Plains, NY; Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, New York, NY

Mark F. Lenzenweger, PhD, Department of Psychology, The State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, NY, and Department of Psychiatry, Weill-Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY

Björn Meyer, PhD, School of Psychology and Therapeutic Studies, University of Surrey Roehampton, Whitelands College, London, UK

Theodore Millon, PhD, DSc, Institute for Advanced Studies in Personology and Psychopathology, Miami, FL; Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Miami, FL; Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School/McLean Hospital, Belmont, MA

Paul A. Pilkonis, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, Pittsburgh, PA; Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA

Aaron L. Pincus, PhD, Department of Psychology, The Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA

James L. Pretzer, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH; Cleveland Center for Cognitive Therapy, Beachwood, OH


Clinicians, researchers, and students in clinical psychology, clinical social work, psychiatry, and related fields.

Course Use

Serves as a text in advanced undergraduate- and graduate-level courses in personality disorders, psychopathology, abnormal psychology, and human behavior.
Previous editions published by Guilford:

First Edition, © 1996
ISBN: 9781572306608
New to this edition: