Ethnicity, expressed emotion, and communication deviance in family members of patients with schizophrenia

Jennifer A. Kymalainen, Amy G. Weisman, Grace A. Rosales, Jorge C. Armesto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


This study examined the relationships among expressed emotion (EE), communication deviance (CD), and ethnicity in a sample of 57 white, Latino, and black relatives of patients with schizophrenia. A new method of assessing CD from the Five Minute Speech Sample was also developed and evaluated against an existing method (the Camberwell Family Interview; CFI). As hypothesized, high expressed emotion rated (from the CFI) was associated with higher levels of CD, and the Five Minute Speech Sample and CFI methods of assessing CD were concordant. CD statements made by white family members focused most on patient behaviors/symptoms that reflected a lack of independent functioning. CD statements of Latino and black relatives, however, focused most on patient behaviors that interfered with the family's interdependent functioning. Family members may have particular difficulty communicating coherently when discussing patients' inability to uphold important values and behaviors that are sanctioned by their ethnic background.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-396
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2006


  • Communication deviance
  • Ethnicity
  • Expressed emotion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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