OBJECTIVE: The authors assessed the growth of the literature on the topic of personality disorders before and after publication of DSM-III. METHOD: A MEDLINE search was conducted for journal articles concerning the personality disorders that were published from 1966 to 1995. RESULTS: Contrary to the authors’ prediction, the growth of this literature was slower after the publication of DSM-III in 1980 than it was before that date. Other areas of psychopathology, such as Alzheimer’s disease and posttraumatic stress disorder, have literatures whose growth rates since 1980 have exceeded their growth rates before publication of DSM-III. CONCLUSIONS: Over one-half of the individual personality disorders (e.g., histrionic and passive-aggressive) have either very small literatures or literatures with negative growth rates. Only three personality disorders (i.e., antisocial, borderline, and schizotypal) have modestly growing literatures.