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Aspects of narcissism can be integrated within the Circumplex of Personality Metatraits

Press release: "Seeking a common framework for research on narcissism: An attempt to integrate the different faces of narcissism within the Circumplex of Personality Metatraits"

Dr. Rogoza and his colleagues recently published an article in the European Journal of Personality entitled, “Seeking a common framework for research on narcissism: An attempt to integrate the different facets of narcissism within the Circumplex of Personality Metatraits”. Within this paper, they examine how different aspects of narcissism could be organized within the general structure of human personality. Results revealed that different narcissistic facets, originating from different theoretical models, could be organized into one, meaningful structure. The study was published in the July/August issue of the European Journal of Personality.

In the study, Rogoza and colleagues examined different factors of narcissism frequently analysed within the literature using many independent measures. Specifically, they examined such factors such as agentic (i.e., agentic self-promotion), antagonistic (i.e., antagonistic orientation), neurotic (i.e., hypersensivity), communal (i.e., communal self-promotion), and collective (i.e., excessive in-group identification) narcissism. While most parsimonious models of narcissistic personality assume only the agentic, antagonistic, and neurotic factors of narcissism, Rogoza and colleagues analysed all factors within the framework of the Circumplex of Personality Metatraits. This is a theoretical model of personality, which incorporates past research on basic personality traits and metatraits. It has been used to synthesize many other psychological constructs such as mental health, affect, values, interpersonal traits, and temperament and in the current study it was applied to scrutinize the structure of narcissistic personality.

Their results confirmed the hypothesized three-factor structure of narcissism, but also emphasized the role of communal narcissism. Overall, their results provided some evidence that narcissistic personality might be best represented by a circumplex structure built upon two orthogonal axes of Plasticity and Stability. In summary, this study demonstrates that different theoretical models of narcissism, to date not analysed jointly, can be successfully located within a single personality model. This finding indicates that in order to fully learn about narcissistic personality, when thinking about such, one cannot focus exclusively on grandiosity and/or vulnerability, as the results suggests it is theoretically a far broader construct. Research on narcissism has advanced in the last few years, however still much has to be done to fully understand narcissistic personality, as the role of communal and collective aspects of narcissism are much more less investigated than other aspects.

Correspondence about this study may be addressed to the first author, Dr. Radosław Rogoza, Institute of Psychology, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw, Wóycickiego, 1/3, 01-938, Warsaw, Poland. Dr. Rogoza can be contacted via email on r.rogoza@uksw.edu.pl. More information and resources could be found on Dr. Rogoza’s personal website.

A conversation with Andreea Sutu and Rodica Damian