Social adversities and psychotic symptoms: A test of predictions derived from the social defeat hypothesis

Edo S. Jaya, Tania M. Lincoln

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Based on the social defeat (SD) hypothesis, this study examines the postulate that various social adversities converge into one common factor, and whether this factor has an effect on psychotic symptoms while controlling for its effect on depression and anxiety. Competing hypotheses arguing for the reverse effect were also tested. The study was a cross-sectional survey in a community sample (N =2350) from Germany (n=786), Indonesia (n=844), and the United States (n=720). Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and path analysis with structural equation modeling were used to test the hypotheses. In the CFA two factors reflecting current and past experiences of SD could be identified with acceptable fit. Path analysis indicated acceptable fit for both SD and reverse models, and both the path from current SD to psychotic symptoms and the reverse one were significant, although the former was stronger than the latter. Interestingly, the current but not the past SD factor was significantly associated with psychotic symptoms. Overall, the results indicate that postulates derived from the SD hypothesis fit the data. However, longitudinal research is needed to further confirm the postulated directionality of the associations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)466-472
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2016


  • Bullying
  • Cross-cultural
  • Etiology
  • Prevention
  • Social factors
  • Trauma


Dive into the research topics of 'Social adversities and psychotic symptoms: A test of predictions derived from the social defeat hypothesis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this