Mechanisms of Psychological Defense and Dominant Defense Behavior of Convicts for Terrorist and Extremist Activities

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Abstract

The aim of the study was to identify the particularities of the defense behavior mechanisms among convicted for terrorist and extremist activities. A total of 469 convicts (351-for terrorist activities, 118 - for extremist activities) participated in the study. Life Style Index was used in order to reveal the defense mechanisms. The results allow us to talk about five types of defense: 1) dominance of projection and compensation defense mechanisms as means against the awareness of the negative and unacceptable personality qualities; 2) dominance of compensation in the profile indicates the desire to overcome a strong sense of inferiority; 3) dominance of reaction formation where unacceptable unconscious content is overcome by strengthening and development of exaggerated opposite trends; 4) dominance of intellectualization, where is the real action to remedy the anxiety and fears, the individual formulates an abstract of judgment, trying to get rid of one’s frustration; 5) dominance of denial, it refers to non-recognition, rejection of reality, displacement of thoughts, feelings, emotions from consciousness. In conclusion the potential of psychotherapeutic work is discussed.

General Information

Keywords: psychological defense mechanisms, convicts, terrorist and extremist activities, defense strategy, correction

Journal rubric: Penitentiary Psychology and Penal Practice

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/psylaw.2021110207

For citation: Bovin B.G., Kazberov P.N., Bovina I.B. Mechanisms of Psychological Defense and Dominant Defense Behavior of Convicts for Terrorist and Extremist Activities [Elektronnyi resurs]. Psikhologiya i pravo = Psychology and Law, 2021. Vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 86–105. DOI: 10.17759/psylaw.2021110207. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Boris G. Bovin, PhD in Psychology, Docent, Leading Researcher, Federal State Institution Research Institute of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9255-7372, e-mail: bovinbg@yandex.ru

Pavel N. Kazberov, PhD in Psychology, Leading Researcher, Research Institute of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2233-0230, e-mail: mr.kazberov@mail.ru

Inna B. Bovina, Doctor of Psychology, Research Director, Associate Professor, Department of Clinical and Legal Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology & Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9497-6199, e-mail: innabovina@yandex.ru

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