Anterior asymmetry, defensiveness, and perceptions of parental caring

John P. Kline, Kelley Knapp-Kline, Gary E.R. Schwartz, Linda G.S. Russek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Perceived parental caring and relative left frontal activation (LFA) of the electroencephalogram (EEG) have been associated with salutary mental and physical health benefits. Defensiveness on the other hand, is associated with decreased self-reported and other-reported psychopathology, and physical health liabilities. Though previous work has delineated relations among some of these factors (e.g. LFA and defensiveness, LFA and immune function, parental caring and defensiveness), the interrelationship of defensiveness, LFA, and parental caring is unknown. The present study examined relationships among defensiveness, perceived parental caring, and resting anterior asymmetry of the electroencephalogram. Defensiveness and perceived maternal caring contributed significant unique variance to the prediction of relative left lateral frontal activation. Paternal caring did not correlate with left frontal activation. The results are discussed as they relate to the relevance of these factors for physical and mental health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1135-1145
Number of pages11
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number7
StatePublished - Nov 2001


  • Anterior asymmetry
  • Defensiveness
  • EEG
  • Emotion
  • Parental caring
  • Repression
  • Repressors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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