Selvhad - omdrejningspunkter og institutionelle bidrag

Studenteropgave: Kandidatspeciale og HD afgangsprojekt

  • Anders Tjørnehøj
4. semester, Psykologi, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
In this master’s thesis I seek to explore what characterizes selfhatred and what significance social
factors have in the development of self-hatred. Self-hatred seems at first glance a paradox, a harmful
hatred directed at myself from myself; a self-defeating self-relation contradicting the basic human
urge to live. Because of the contradiction to life itself selfhatred comes with substantial human costs
and can lead to self-harm, suicidal thoughts, and suicide attempts. Driven by the theoretical puzzle of
selfhatred, and the dire consequences of its existence, this project attempts to understand selfhatred
and its social origin, to better be able to prevent, counteract and remedy the effects of it.
Firstly, different theoretical takes on selfhatred, development and social influence are introduced to
develop a basic understanding of selfhatred. These perspectives also function in regard to unfolding
the accounts of the informants whose participation constitute the empirical focus of this project. The
specific theories drawn upon are made up of current research, a philosophical perspective,
developmental psychology, social psychology, and sociology.
The attempt to understand selfhatred is carried out through interviews with three women who have
been, and to some degree still is, struggling with selfhatred. The interview form used is a semistructured qualitative interview, based on a pragmatist perspective. The interviews are analyzed using
thematic analysis, an analysis that resulted in three main themes: 1) The character and agenda of
selfhatred. 2) The origin of selfhatred. 3) Specific social factors.
The main themes represent an overall understanding of selfhatred as a persecutory I-position aiming
at harming the individual. An I-position with an external cause, characterized by representing the
voices and hatred of others, internalized, and camouflaged as being my own hatred, my own voice.
The external cause of selfhatred can be manifold and varied, but some central figures in this regard
are parents, peers, teachers, and the general environment in significant social institutions.
Lastly the method, theory and analysis of the current project is discussed. It is discussed whether the
conceptualization of the self in selfhatred is justified and meaningful, and what makes up the
connection between systemic factors, specific social factors and selfhatred. It is also discussed what
risks are associated with a non-suspicious method, before the thesis is put into a wider perspective
regarding further research, prevention of, and intervention against selfhatred.
Udgivelsesdato28 maj 2021
ID: 413007646