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Article   |    
CHRONIC OR PERSISTING IDENTITY DIFFUSION
WERNER KOENIG
Am J Psychiatry 1964;120:1081-1084.
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Adjunct, Department of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai Division, Cedars-Sinai Hospitals, Los Angeles, and The Hacker Clinic, 160 Lasky Drive, Beverly Hills, Calif.

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Abstract

This paper discusses the psychiatric examination of over 200 former concentration camp survivors in connection with their restitution claims. By extending Erikson's concept of acute identity diffusion at the end of adolescence to the concept of a chronic or persisting identity diffusion, satisfactory theoretical framework for the understanding of the characterological changes in former adolescent camp survivors was developed. The paper seeks to illustrate the theoretical issues by use of general background and direct quotations of the individuals and closes with a short comment on the therapeutic goal.

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