The International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis
Volume 47, Number 3 - July 1999 - English
Attentional resources in hypnotic responding
Irving Kirsch, Cheryl A. Burgess, and Wayne Braffman
Abstract: Theories of hypnotic responding differ in the role assigned to attentional processes. Predictions derived from neodissociation, dissociated control, response set, and ironic process theory were tested by administering suggestions with and without cognitive load to high suggestible participants and low suggestible simulators. Consistent with predictions from Kirsch and Lynn's (1997) response set theory, cognitive load interfered with responding to ideomotor and cognitive suggestions, but not with responses to challenge suggestions. The effect of cognitive load on suggested amnesia depended on the criteria used to assess that response. Although cognitive load decreased recall on the amnesia trial, it did so even more on recall trials before the amnesia suggestion was given and after it was canceled. These data indicate that attentional effort is required for both recall and memory suppression. Under conditions of low cognitive load, simulators displayed less recall than nonsimulating participants during suggested amnesia, and they reported smaller subjective responses to ideomotor and challenge suggestions.
Hypnotic and posthypnotic suggestion: Finding meaning in the message of the hypnotist
Amanda J. Barnier and Kevin M. McConkey
Abstract: High hypnotizable subjects were asked a question before, during, and after hypnosis and were given a suggestion before, during, or after hypnosis to rub their ear lobe when they were asked this question. In this way, the experiment placed a question that required a verbal response in contrast with a suggestion that only sometimes required a behavioral response. Subjects were more likely to respond behaviorally when the question was associated with the suggestion, but more likely to respond verbally when the question was a social interaction; further, the likelihood of subjects responding behaviorally and/or verbally shifted across the tests with the changing message of the hypnotist. The findings highlight the hypnotized subjects' attempts to interpret the hypnotist's communications and their ability to resolve ambiguity in the nexus of those messages in a way that promotes their hypnotic behavior and experience.
The creative use of unexpected responses in the hypnotherapy of patients with conversion disorders.
Franny C. Moene and Kees A.L. Hoogduin
Abstract: In a previously completed empirical study examining the use of hypnosis in a comprehensive treatment program with 85 patients who suffered motor conversion symptoms, 16 patients were reported by their therapists to have had unusual and unexpected responses during hypnosis. This article summarizes the literature on the occurrence of unintended phenomena during hypnosis and presents instances encountered in a study of conversion hysterics. The article illustrates these occurrences and their management with 6 clinical vignettes and concludes that surprising or unusual responses to hypnosis with these types of cases can be an opportunity for the patient to enhance understanding and control over their symptoms.
Finnish norms for the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Form A
Sakari P. I. Kallio and Mikko J. Ihamuotila
Abstract: Finnish norms of the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Form A (HGSHS:A) of Shor and Orne (1962) are presented. The aggregate sample of 285 subjects consisted of 3 groups (N = 129, N = 116, and N = 40) which were tested during 1996 and 1997. This sample is compared with the normative sample of Harvard students (American sample); an Australian sample; and with 3 translated versions; the Danish, German, and Spanish adaptations of HGSHS:A. In the Finnish sample, Items 2 (eye closure), 11 (posthypnotic suggestion), and 12 (amnesia) received high passing percentage in comparison with the reference data, but generally the Finnish normative data were congruent with these index studies.
The Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility and Related Instruments: Individual and Group Administrations
Frank Angelini, V. K. Kumar, and Louis Chandler
Abstract: The Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Form A; Tellegen's Absorption Scale (TAS); Dissociative Experiences Scale (DES); and Phenomenology of Consciousness Inventory (PCI) were administered either individually or in groups. Eighty students from undergraduate "Introduction to Psychology" classes were randomly assigned to 1 of the 2 administration conditions with 40 students each. Although there was a general trend of differential item difficulty levels across the 2 administration conditions, a variety of results (descriptive characteristics, reliability, validity) point to the similarity of behavioral and subjective responses to hypnosis in the 2 conditions. The TAS, DES, and PCI also produced similar results across both conditions of administration.