Lüscher color test  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Lüscher color test is a psychological test invented by Dr. Max Lüscher in Basel, Switzerland.

Max Lüscher believed that sensory perception of color is objective and universally shared by all, but that color preferences are subjective, and that this distinction allows subjective states to be objectively measured by using test colors. Lüscher believed that because the color selections are guided in an unconscious manner, they reveal the person as they really are, not as they perceive themselves or would like to be perceived.

A 1984 comparison of the Lüscher color test and the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory found little agreement between the two tests, prompting the authors to urge cautious use of the former.

Use

Lüscher believed that personality traits could be identified based on one’s choice of color. Therefore, subjects who select identical color combinations have similar personalities. In order to measure this, he conducted a test in which subjects were shown 8 different colored cards and asked to place them in order of preference. Colors are divided between "basic" (blue, yellow, red, green) and "auxiliary" (violet, brown, grey, and black).

Colors Meanings
Blue “Depth of Feeling” passive, concentric, tranquility, calm, tenderness
Green “Elasticity of Will” passive, concentric, defensive, persistence, self-esteem/assertion, pride, control
Red “Force of Will” ex-centric, active aggressive, competitive, action, desire, excitement, sexuality
Yellow “Spontaneity” ex-centric, active, projective, aspiring, expectancy, exhilaration
Violet “Identification” unrealistic/ wishful fulfillment, charm, enchantment
Brown Bodily senses, indicates the body’s condition
Black Nothingness, renunciation, surrender or relinquishment
Grey Non-involvement and concealment

After subjects placed the cards in order from most liked to least liked, they were asked to evaluate the extent to which their personalities matched the descriptive statements formed by Lüscher of each color.

The results of the Lüscher-Color-Diagnostic contain indications pertaining to personal assessment and special, professional recommendations as to how psychological stress and the resulting physical symptoms can be avoided. It also offers additional information for verbal and homeopathic therapy.

Criticisms

The validity of the color test has been questioned. It may be an example of the Barnum effect, where an ostensible personality analysis (actually consisting of vague generalities applicable to the majority of people) is reported to be accurate by subjects who had completed a personality test before reviewing their 'results'. A 1984 comparison of the Lüscher color test and the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory found little agreement between the two tests, prompting the authors to urge cautious use of the former.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Lüscher color test" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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