On definitions, diagnosis, and DSM-III. Academic Article uri icon


  • In a recent article, Widiger, Frances, Warner, and Bluhm (1986) evaluated the criteria for two personality-disorder categories listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III; American Psychiatric Association, 1980). Their data make apparent the necessity of carefully examining the assumptions that underlie classification systems. In this article we discuss the importance of some of the different roles of classification systems. We particularly examine the implications of two assumptions that can be made about the DSM-III: that it is designed as a collection of definitions, and that it is intended as a diagnostic guide for clinicians. 1987 American Psychological Association.

published proceedings

  • J Abnorm Psychol

author list (cited authors)

  • Morey, L. C., & McNamara, T. P.

citation count

  • 21

complete list of authors

  • Morey, LC||McNamara, TP

publication date

  • August 1987