ماکیاولیسم، کمال گرایی صفت و خود ارائه کمال گرایی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|32604||2006||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||محاسبه نشده|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 40, Issue 4, March 2006, Pages 829–839
This study examined Machiavellianism, trait perfectionism, and perfectionistic self-presentation in a sample of 483 university students (134 men; 349 women). Socially prescribed perfectionism mediated the association between Machiavellianism and perfectionistic self-presentation for both genders. Thus, the connection between Machiavellianism and perfectionistic self-presentation operated through socially prescribed perfectionism. Overall, Machiavellianism and components of perfectionism appeared to form a theoretically appreciable and an empirically demonstrable personality configuration. Machiavellian perfectionists (a) perceive others as demanding, controlling, punitive, and hostile toward them, (b) promote an image of perfection, capability, and strength to others, and (c) conceal any hint of imperfection, vulnerability, and weakness from others. When Machiavellian individuals perceive perfectionistic demands from significant others, perfectionistic self-presentation is likely to emerge from their chameleon-like repertoire of self-presentational behaviors.
It is not essential, then, that a Prince should have all the good qualities which I have enumerated [e.g., uprightness, mercifulness, religiousness], but it is most essential that he should seem to have them; I will even venture to affirm that if he has and invariably practises them all, they are hurtful, whereas the appearance of having them is useful (Machiavelli, 1513/1999, p. 58). Personality is an interrelated constellation of traits, not a single trait existing in isolation. Certain traits are likely to co-occur and to form an identifiable personality configuration wherein one trait influences another. In this study, we argue and demonstrate that Machiavellianism (MAC) and components of perfectionism form a theoretically appreciable and an empirically demonstrable personality configuration. Although it has been noted that perfectionism and narcissism and perfectionism and obsessionality co-occur (American Psychiatric Association, 2000), researchers have not studied whether MAC and perfectionism overlap with one another. 1.1. Definitions of constructs MAC involves aloof manipulation of others, disdain for conventional morality, and viewing humankind with cynicism (Christie & Geis, 1970). Machiavellian individuals may be described as domineering, impersonal, suspicious, practical, cold, deceitful, impervious, and exploitative (McHoskey, Worzel, & Szyarto, 1998). In an emotionally charged situation involving face-to-face contact and permitting latitude for improvisation, Machiavellian individuals “manipulate more, win more, are persuaded less, [and] persuade others more” (Christie & Geis, p. 312). Trait perfectionism involves the requirement that oneself or others must be perfect. There are three distinct and stable dimensions of trait perfectionism (Hewitt & Flett, 1991): self-oriented perfectionism (i.e., inflexibly and ceaselessly demanding perfection of oneself), other-oriented perfectionism (i.e., harshly and unrelentingly demanding perfection of others), and socially prescribed perfectionism (i.e., perceiving that others are rigidly and unrealistically demanding perfection of oneself). Perfectionistic self-presentation focuses on the expressive features of perfectionism and involves promoting one’s supposed perfection to others and/or concealing one’s perceived imperfections from others (Hewitt et al., 2003). There are three separate and enduring facets of perfectionistic self-presentation (Hewitt et al.): perfectionistic self-promotion (i.e., pridefully and assertively promoting one’s supposed perfection to others), nondisclosure of imperfection (i.e., avoiding verbal disclosures of one’s perceived imperfections to others), and nondisplay of imperfection (i.e., concealing behavioral displays of one’s perceived imperfections from others). Although trait perfectionism and perfectionistic self-presentation overlap, they are empirically and conceptually distinct (Hewitt et al., 2003). Trait perfectionism centers on dispositions and attitudes associated with perfectionism (e.g., rigid self-expectations); whereas perfectionistic self-presentation focuses on how perfectionists behave in expressing their perfection to others (e.g., self-promotional behaviors). Although a desire to actually be perfect (e.g., self-oriented perfectionism [SOP]) may involve a desire to appear as perfect (e.g., perfectionistic self-promotion), the former does not invariably involve the latter (and vice versa). Finally, regression analyses support the assertion that trait perfectionism and perfectionistic self-presentation are separable (Hewitt et al.). 1.2. Objectives The purpose of this study was to provide novel evidence of the relationships among MAC, trait perfectionism, and perfectionistic self-presentation. In doing so, we aimed to elaborate the nomological network in which each construct is situated. To our knowledge, no study has examined MAC and trait perfectionism. Given the longstanding belief that achievement striving is often conducive to interpersonal manipulation and interpersonal manipulation is facilitative of personal achievement (Machiavelli, 1513/1999), the absence of research on MAC and trait perfectionism is somewhat surprising. Moreover, research has not evaluated the association between MAC and perfectionistic self-presentation. However, as suggested by our opening quote (and as discussed in more detail below), perfectionistic self-presentation may also relate to MAC. For example, actually being merciful was unimportant to Machiavelli, whereas seeming to be merciful was expedient. Analogously, actually being perfect may be unimportant to Machiavellian individuals, whereas appearing to be perfect may be expedient. 1.3. Hypotheses First, we anticipated that MAC would be associated with other-oriented perfectionism (OOP) because harshly demanding perfection of others seems congruent with Machiavellian individuals’ pattern of hostility, dominance, entitlement, exploitativeness, and other-derogation (Fehr, Samson, & Paulhus, 1992). Second, we anticipated that MAC would be related to socially prescribed perfectionism (SPP) because Machiavellian individuals’ cognitions and perceptions are generally suggestive of (and perhaps conducive to) SPP. Machiavellian individuals believe that powerful others control valued resources (Hunter, Gerbing, & Boster, 1982), perceive that their lives are governed by external forces (Mudrack, 1990), think that they are powerless (McHoskey & Hicks, 1999), and feel that others are hostile (Duffy, Shiflett, & Downey, 1977). Thus, we expected Machiavellian individuals to hold relational schemas wherein critical and powerful others are perceived as making harsh and unrealistic demands. This hypothesis is also consistent with the idea that MAC may represent an effort “to assert influence over a hostile environment” (Mudrack, p. 125). Third, we expected that MAC would be associated with perfectionistic self-presentation because actively promoting an image of strength, capability, and perfection to others (i.e., perfectionistic self-promotion) and/or defensively concealing any hint of weakness, vulnerability, and imperfection from others (i.e., nondisclosure of imperfection and nondisplay of imperfection) is in keeping with Machiavellian individuals’ aloof, dominant, narcissistic, and mistrustful interpersonal style (Gurtman, 1992). Thus, Machiavellian individuals may use perfectionistic self-presentation as an interpersonal influence tactic to enhance, maintain, and reinforce a desired image of strength and dominance. A connection between MAC and perfectionistic self-presentation is further suggested by research on perfectionistic self-presentation and self-presentational tactics. Hewitt et al. (2003) found that perfectionistic self-presentation was linked with assertive self-presentational tactics (e.g., enhancement) typical of Machiavellian individuals (McHoskey, 1995). These data also suggest that perfectionistic self-presentation may involve overt public behaviors designed to control others and to manage impressions. Fourth, we anticipated that SPP would mediate the relationship between MAC and perfectionistic self-presentation based on the following theory and evidence. The first path in our hypothesized mediational model (i.e., MAC is related to SPP) is congruent with evidence indicating that Machiavellian individuals (a) perceive others as hostile, punitive, controlling, and demanding toward them (Duffy et al., 1977) and (b) view the world as a hostile, threatening place controlled by powerful others (Prociuk & Breen, 1976). The second path in our proposed mediational model (i.e., SPP is associated with perfectionistic self-presentation) is consistent with research suggesting that one response to SPP is to attempt to present oneself as perfect to others in an effort to gain their respect and recognition and/or to avoid their censure and punitiveness (Hewitt et al., 2003). Thus, in answer to the question, “Why do Machiavellian individuals attempt to present themselves as perfect to others?” we proposed that the answer is, “Because they perceive that powerful others are hostile, punitive, controlling, and demanding toward them.” Overall, our hypothesized mediational model is consonant with Prociuk and Breen’s assertion that individuals “who believe that powerful others control reinforcements should endorse Machiavellian strategies (e.g., deception)” (p. 141). We also explored whether each aforementioned hypothesis generalized across gender. Several reasons prompted our interest in gender differences. First, past studies involving MAC (e.g., Rim, 1992) and perfectionism (e.g., Dunn, Gotwals, & Dunn, 2005) have found gender differences. Thus, collapsing across men and women may obscure findings. Second, both MAC researchers (e.g., McHoskey, 2001b) and perfectionism researchers (e.g., van Hanswijck de Jonge & Waller, 2003) have called for more investigations of gender differences in their respective areas. Third, prior research has suggested that MAC may express itself differently in each gender. Braginsky (1970), for example, argued that Machiavellian women manipulate others through self-presentation, whereas Machiavellian men manipulate others through aggressive behavior. Finally, the potential importance of gender differences is suggested by research showing that antisocial men and antisocial women exhibit a differential pattern of comorbid personality pathology (e.g., Hamburger, Lilienfeld, & Hogben, 1996).