Escapism: interdisciplinary analysis of approaches to the phenomenon and research prospects in personality psychology

[Speaker] Olkina, Oxana:1,3
[Co-author] Savchenko, Tatiana:1,2
1:Institute of Psychology RAS (Russia), 2:Higher School of Psychology (Russia), 3:Academy of Social Management (Russia)

The paper is an investigation of current tendencies of studing escapism in social sciences. Particular interpretations of the phenomenon exist in philosophy (neutral, as a universal pattern), sociology (negative, as a deviation), literature (positive, as a source of inspiration). Contrasting with early Russian psychological studies where the escapism was mentioned briefly due to issues of fantasy, nowadays it is usually associated with, or affected by, emerging technology, being studied in cyberpsychology. Most researchers highlight the negative pole of escapism and rarely take into account that it cannot be reduced to a submersion into virtual reality. It also refers to a daydreaming, immersion into illusions caused by altered states of consciousness, fantasizing while reading fantasy books, watching pieces of art etc. Thus, studies balancing the two poles of the escapism, e.g. defining it as a meta-activity aimed to decrease interpersonal conflicts, may become a prospect research line in a nowadays psychology.
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