The Science of Graphology

Our handwriting style is influenced by our physical, mental, and emotional situations. Graphology can discover and logically understand individual traits in each of these areas.

It is quite difficult to conduct a scientific study of personality using handwriting or any other method. The “projective hypothesis” is a statement in clinical psychology that maintains that personality is an organized whole and consistent, and that all human conduct is a mirror of personality.  Whether we think of personality as a collection of varied features, a collection of physical attributes, or a means of relating to people, this is a useful idea with truth. It does not imply that we reveal all of ourselves all of the time, that we do not vary our qualities of ourselves all of the time, or that our attributes and behaviors do not change. It does imply that every gesture, every word, and every action we make is linked to our core life-style, which we refer to as our personality.

Is graphology now considered a “science”? Take a look at what the dictionary says. Graphology is defined as “the study of handwriting, especially as it is assumed to reveal the writer’s character, aptitude, etc.” by Webster’s New Twentieth Century Unabridged Dictionary. So, unlike psychology, which is “the science concerned with the mind and mental processes,” Webster’s does not regard graphology to be a “science.” What, then, is Webster’s definition of a “science”? It is as follows:

1. originally, state or fact of knowing; knowledge, often as opposed to intuition, belief. 2. systematized knowledge derived from observation, study, and experimentation carried on in order to determine the nature or principles of what is being studied. 3. a branch of knowledge or study, especially one concerned with establishing and systematizing facts, principles, and methods as by experiments and hypotheses. . . .

Is graphology a good fit for this definition? Graphological data is derived from observation, study, and testing, as you’ve just seen. Graphology, on the other hand, establishes a collection of facts through hypotheses and experimentation.

Research in Graphology

Let’s take a closer look at how this works. Let’s say we wanted to establish the following hypothesis: “Alcoholism can be detected in handwriting.” “Alcoholics all share certain, identifiable handwriting qualities common only to them,” is another way of expressing our idea.

To test whether this idea is correct, we must first agree on what constitutes a “alcoholic.” We can obtain test subjects through the Alcoholics Anonymous organization if we accept the premise that people who are members of Alcoholics Anonymous are alcoholics.

We take writing examples from 1,000 certified alcoholics, and then we take writing samples from 1,000 people who aren’t alcoholics and don’t have any kind of drinking problem (a control group of “nonalcoholics”). The two sample groups are then compared to see if there are any handwriting traits shared by alcoholics that are not shared by a statistically significant percentage of the nonalcoholic population.

According to research like these, there are numerous key combinations of handwriting qualities observed in alcoholics’ writing that are not found in nonalcoholics’ writing. As a result, these characteristics are thought to be linked to alcoholism.

We try to put our hypothesis to the test to see if it works. A third party collects and submits a minimum of 1,000 handwriting samples to us on their own. There are alcoholics and nonalcoholics within these samples, whose identities and numbers are only known to the outside parties. We can only say our hypothesis works if we can reliably discern which texts belong to alcoholics and which belong to nonalcoholics.

When competent researchers perform tests like this one with various alcoholic and control groups, the results are the same. As a result, systematized knowledge rather than intuition is being used.

The empirical technique is used by graphology to prove its theories. That is the same standard that must be met when establishing chemistry, biology, or any other science’s principles.

Many of graphology’s ideas, such as “Heart disease is apparent in the handwriting,” “Dishonesty is discernible in the handwriting,” and “Mental instability is discernible in the handwriting,” can be proven or disproved because we have hospitals, prisons, and psychology professionals.

One criticism of graphology as a discipline is because it frequently makes interpretations in areas that, unlike the ones just listed, are extremely subjective. “How do we judge attributes like stubbornness, friendliness, extroversion, or anger?” questions this group of doubters. The answer is to discover persons who are thought to have the characteristic in question by a lot of people who know them, and then figure out which handwriting traits they all have in common.

These doubters, on the other hand, believe that these areas are too elusive to begin with and, as a result, are not truly measured.

Psychology, which is classified as a “science” as previously said, is in the same boat. A psychologist might state, for example, that a guy is afraid of his mother. Maybe the individual does, maybe he doesn’t, maybe he only fears his mother at family gatherings, maybe he only fears her when she’s angry, and so on. In any case, there’s no way to know for sure.

Similarly, there are gray regions if a graphologist believes a person is lovely and compassionate. Perhaps the individual isn’t always sweet and kind, or perhaps she is just sweet and nice to those she likes and knows, and so on.

There will always be a subjective aspect when describing anything other than statistics. A person can verify his age if he claims to be twenty-seven years old today. However, whether he claims that he is feeling older today, sad, furious, or any other emotion, there is no way to prove these claims. Wouldn’t you agree, though, that these subjective feelings and thoughts really exist?

A skill or art must meet three criteria in order to be classified as a science. It needs to amass a collection of methodical observations. It needs to amass a collection of methodical observations. It must extract principles from these observations that are suited to the unique characteristics of the skill in question, and it must have a high average accuracy in producing accurate detections. The science of graphology meets all of the aforementioned criteria admirably.

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