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Trajectories of Resilience, Resistance, and Distress During Ongoing Terrorism: The Case of Jews and Arabs in Israel

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Hobfoll, S.E., P.A. Palmieri, Robert Alan Johnson, D. Canetti-Nisim, B.J. Hall, and Sandro Galea. 2009. "Trajectories of Resilience, Resistance, and Distress During Ongoing Terrorism: The Case of Jews and Arabs in Israel." Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 77(1): 138-148.

This is the 1st longitudinal examination of trajectories of resilience and resistance (rather than ill-being) among a national sample under ongoing threat of mass casualty. The authors interviewed a nationally representative sample of Jews and Arabs in Israel (N = 709) at 2 times during a period of terrorist and rocket attacks (2004-2005). The resistance trajectory, exhibiting few or no symptoms of traumatic stress and depression at both time points, was substantially less common (22.1%) than has previously been documented in studies following single mass casualty events. The resilience trajectory, exhibiting initial symptoms and becoming relatively nonsymptomatic, was evidenced by 13.5% of interviewees. The chronic distress trajectory was documented among a majority of participants (54.0%), and a small proportion of persons were initially relatively symptom-free but became distressed (termed delayed distress trajectory; 10.3%). Less psychosocial resource loss and majority status (Jewish) were the most consistent predictors of resistance and resilience trajectories, followed by greater socioeconomic status, greater support from friends, and less report of posttraumatic growth.

DOI:10.1037/a0014360 (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC2813144. (Pub Med Central)

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Country of focus: Israel.

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