Self-esteem and depression revisited : implicit positive self-esteem in depressed patients?
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Behaviour research and therapy. - Oxford
, p. 1017-1028
The cognitive behavioural model of depression holds that negative cognitions related to the self have etiological importance for the maintenance and relapse of depression. This has been confirmed by research using questionnaires. Recent research using the Implicit Association Test, however, showed positive implicit self-esteem in formerly depressed participants, even after negative mood induction [Gemar, Segal, Sagrati, & Kennedy (2001). Mood-induced changes on the implicit association test in recovered depressed patients. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 110, 282289]. These results are not in line with cognitive theory of depression. Since this could be an artifact of the specific procedure that was used, we investigated implicit self-esteem of currently depressed participants and healthy controls using three different paradigms: The Implicit Association Test, the Name Letter Preference Task, and the Extrinsic Affective Simon Task. The results of the three experiments are unequivocally indicative of positive implicit self-esteem in currently depressed patients. However, it remains an intriguing question what exactly these indirect measures assess.