Shadows of the past and threats of the future: ISIS anxiety among grandchildren of Holocaust survivors

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The current study examined intergenerational transmission of trauma in grandchildren of Holocaust survivors. While many typically do not find evidence for such effects, careful reading of the relevant literature suggests conditions under which such effects may be obtained. Following, we made use of three factors. First, we took the number of grandparents exposed to the Holocaust into account. Second, we examined participants who were exposed to present terror and displayed posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. Third, we measured anxiety of a future ISIS threat, which in its genocidal nature is reminiscent of the Holocaust. Results reveal that grandchildren having all four grandparents who survived the Holocaust in conjunction with them directly experiencing PTSD symptoms demonstrated greater ISIS anxiety than other groups. Results are discussed in reference to various conditions that may determine the likelihood of intergenerational transmission of trauma emerging.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)220-225
Number of pages6
JournalPsychiatry Research
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd


  • Grandchildren of Holocaust survivors
  • ISIS threat
  • Intergenerational transmission of trauma
  • PTSD


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