Solitary personality type

Basic Desire/ Pleasure:* solitude
Basic Fear/ Distress: intimacy

Basic Passions of the Types

Dr. John M. Oldham has defined the Solitary personality style. The following six characteristic traits and behaviors are listed in his The New Personality Self-Portrait.

Solitude. Individuals with the Solitary personality style have small need of companionship and are most comfortable alone.

Independence. They are self-contained and do not require interaction with others in order to enjoy their experiences or to get on in life.

Sangfroid. Solitary men and women are even-tempered, calm, dispassionate, unsentimental, and unflappable.

Stoicism. They display an apparent indifference to pain and pleasure.

Sexual composure. They are not driven by sexual needs. They enjoy sex but will not suffer in its absence.

Feet on the ground. They are unswayed by either praise or criticism and can confidently come to terms with their own behavior.

Source: Oldham, John M., and Lois B. Morris. The New Personality Self-Portrait: Why You Think, Work, Love, and Act the Way You Do. Rev. ed. New York: Bantam, 1995.

Careers and Jobs for the Solitary type

Google Answers: selecting the right career for me

This list represents careers and jobs people of the Solitary type tend to enjoy doing.

strategic planning
staff development
software designer
financial analyst
college professor
systems analyst
computer programmer
data base manager

Source: U.S. Department of Interior, Career Manager - INTP.

Noteworthy Examples of the Solitary personality type

Many people (and not just those of the Solitary personality type) have schizoid traits or behave in a schizoid manner. But the traits and behaviors of the Solitary personality type are not so inflexible and maladaptive or the cause of such significant subjective distress or functional impairment as to constitute

Schizoid Personality Disorder

The noteworthy examples of the Solitary personality type are examples of a *type*, not of a disorder. It is my opinion that the ideal type which is described above is best characterized as solitary, and that the Solitary personality type represents the pervasive and enduring pattern of the personalities of the people listed below better than any other type.

Noteworthy examples of the Solitary personality type are:

Index of noteworthy examples

Isaac Asimov

Science:Biology:Evolution: Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

Bobby Fischer

Social Science:Psychology:Psychologists:Sigmund Freud (1865-1939) below

Bill Gates

Science:Physics:Physicists:Stephen Hawking(1942- )

Entertainment > Movies and Film > Filmmaking > Directing > Directors > Alfred Hitchcock

Government:Law:Cases:Theodore Kaczynski Case

Google Search: David Keirsey below

Arts > Humanities > Literature > Authors > Literary Fiction > Doris Lessing below

Arts > Humanities > History > U.S. History > By Subject > Presidency > Presidents > James Madison (1751-1836)

Social Science > Political Science > Political Theory > Marxism > Theorists and Critics > Karl Marx (1818-1883)

Google Search: Claudio Naranjo below

Science > Mathematics > Mathematicians > Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727)

Cynthia Ozick

Arts > Humanities > Literature > Authors > Poets > Ezra Pound (1885-1972)

Psychology:Psychologists:Burrhus Frederic Skinner(1904-1990)

James Watson

Humanities:Philosophy:Philosophers:Simone Weil (1909-1943)

Sigmund Freud

Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilousóto poetry. ñSigmund Freud

PTypes - Freud's quest for fame
Freud's schizoid relationship with his daughter, Anna.

Sigmund Freud disregarded psychoanalytic custom when he chose to psychoanalyze his daughter, Anna, in response to what he termed her 'father-complex'. In Why Freud was Wrong, Richard Webster explains the results of that decision and provides a insight into the schizoid form of relationship:

What is surprising, even in relation to the view of Freud which I have presented in earlier chapters, is his evident failure to understand the human implications of his own decision to take his daughter into analysis. For what he seems not to have grasped is that, in the daily psychoanalytic sessions he held with his daughter, he was steadily intensifying and deepening the very psychological predicament he was consciously seeking to resolve.

So profound was Freud's belief that psychoanalysis was a scientific technique which could be employed objectively in order to achieve medical ends, and so lacking was he in ordinary psychological insight, he appears not to have recognised that in discussing with his twenty-six-year-old daughter her supposed masturbatory fantasies, and her putative sexual fixation on him, he was entering a psychological minefield. Apart from anything else, by showing such an interest in his daughter's sexual imagination, he was clearly transgressing a powerful taboo - and doing so in a manner which evidently gratified his own sexual curiosity. Most people possessed of any degree of ordinary psychological insight would tend intuitively to judge such behaviour as misguided. In the particular circumstances which confront us here, however, it is perhaps worth considering, with rather more care than we generally take, exactly why we might come to such a judgement.

The conventional explanation might very well be that, by behaving in the manner that he did, Freud was sexualising a relationship which, for the psychological well-being of his daughter, should have been kept entirely asexual. There may be a sense in which this is true. But there is also, I believe, an important sense in which it actually inverts the truth. For, in some respects at least, the relationship between father and daughter will always tend to have a sexual dimension. One of the functions of the unwritten rules which govern such relationships is not to suppress this sexual dimension entirely but to allow it to exist, and even flourish, in an area of psychological safety. In a close relationship which is well bounded by such unwritten rules, both father and daughter may, to a certain extent, feel able to express towards one another warm affection, which is quite possibly tinged by sexual attraction, and which can be expressed physically without the danger that the relationship will ever become fully sexual. Written or unwritten rules in this area, as in many other areas of human behaviour, actually serve to safeguard a degree of relative freedom. When such rules are broken, as they evidently were in Freud's analysis of his daughter, the possibility of absolute transgression - of incest - is imaginatively opened up. Because incest is deeply threatening to most people, one of the psychological dangers of such licence is that both father and daughter, unprotected by explicit or implicit rules, will be thrown back onto the resources of the conscience. They may then feel forced to submit to the exacting and cruel demands which the conscience has a tendency to make. Unprotected by an external framework of rules, father and daughter may find themselves obsessively creating an internal framework of inhibition. In doing this there is a great danger that they may empty their relationship of the last traces of emotional warmth and physical affection in an anxious attempt to reassure themselves about their essential virtuousness. In this manner what may appear to be a dangerous attempt to sexualise a relationship, may lead to a cold and conscience-stricken desexualisation of the very bond which was once most warm and affectionate (416-17).

David Keirsey

Keirsey Temperament and Character Web Site - What's Your Personality Type?

B. F. Skinner

B. F. Skinner - Dr. C. George Boeree.

Personal statements

Oppressed Group: Schizoid A Personality Not a Disorder

FAQ of Schizoid Personality Type

Schizoid personality resource Internet Archive

Corresponding Myers-Briggs Type (see Correspondence)

INTP Mailing List Frequently Asked Questions
Copyright © 1998-2003 Dave Kelly