Frustration

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frustration

[frəs′trā·shən]
(psychology)
The experience of nonfulfillment of some wish or need.
(solid-state physics)
In spin glasses, a phenomenon in which individual magnetic moments receive competing ordering instructions via different routes, because of the variation of the interaction between pairs of atomic moments with separation.

Frustration

 

a psychological state marked by oppressive tension, anxiety, a feeling of no way out, and despair. Frustration arises in a situation perceived by the personality as an irreversible threat to the attainment of a goal important for the satisfaction of certain needs. The degree of frustration depends both on the importance of the action being blocked and on the nearness of the goal being sought. Reaction to a state of frustration may include any of the basic types of “substituting” actions. A person might “escape” from the real situation into the realm of fantasies, dreams, and visions; in other words, there may be a transition to action in some “magical” world. Aggressive tendencies may appear, manifesting themselves in restrained forms, such as irritability, or breaking through in the form of anger. A general “regression” of behavior may be observed, including a transition to less demanding and more primitive modes of action and frequent job changes.

Frustration frequently leads to a residual lack of confidence and a fixation on the modes of action employed in the situation of frustration. Frustration is often a source of neuroses. Of special importance (primarily from the point of view of applied problems) has been the assumption in present-day psychology of the problem of a person’s “endurance” (staying power) with regard to frustration.

REFERENCES

Eksperimental’naia psikhologiia, vol. 5. Edited and compiled by P. Fraisse and J. Piaget. Moscow, 1975. (Translated from French.)
Rosenzweig, S. “An Outline of Frustration Theory.” In Personality and the Behavior Disorders, vol. 1. New York, 1946.
Frustration and Aggression. New Haven–London, 1949.
Lawson, R. Frustration. New York, 1965.

Frustration

Akaki
poor government clerk saves to buy a new overcoat, only to have it stolen. [Russ. Lit.: Gogol The Overcoat in Magill II, 790]
Angstrom, Harry “Rabbit”
former basketball star frustrated by demands of adult life. [Am. Lit.: Rabbit, Run, Magill IV, 1042–1044]
Barataria
dishes removed before Sancho tasted them. [Span. Lit.: Don Quixote]
Bundren, Addie
family continually thwarted in 9-day attempt to bury her. [Am. Lit.: As I Lay Dying]
Catch-22
Air Force captain’s appeal to be grounded for insanity not granted because desire to avoid combat proves sanity. [Am. Lit.: Joseph Heller Catch-22]
coyote
foiled in attempts to enjoy prey. [Am. Ind. Folklore: Mercatante, 77–78]
Henderson the Rain King
character’s frustration shown by his continually saying, “I want, I want.” [Am. Lit.: Henderson the Rain King]
Joseph K
accused of a mysterious crime, fails in his attempts to seek exoneration, and is executed. [Ger. Lit.: Kafka The Trial]
K
. continually hindered from gaining entrance to mysterious castle. [Ger. Lit.: The Castle]
Old Mother Hubbard
foiled at all attempts to care for dog. [Nurs. Rhyme: Baring-Gould, 111–113]
Raven, The
answer for quests of longing: “Nevermore.” [Am. Lit.: “The Raven” in Hart, 656]
Sharpless
frustrated in attempt to prepare Cio-Cio-San for disappointment. [Ital. Opera: Puccini, Madame Butterfly, Westerman, 358]
Sisyphus
man condemned to roll up a hill a huge stone which always rolls back before he gets it to the top. [Gk. Myth.: Brewer Dictionary, 1006]
Tantalus
condemned in Hades to thirst after receding water. [Gk. Myth.: Brewer Dictionary, 1062]
Three Sisters, The
sisters live dull, provincial lives, yearning to return to the gay life of Moscow. [Russ. Drama: Benét, 1005]
Watty, Mr.
bankrupt; waits years for court action. [Br. Lit.: Pickwick Papers]
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