Ash Catton

PhD Candidate, Clinical Psychology Student


A Selection of essays, reviews, and musings encompassing both psychological and philosophical topics.

Oct 15, 2021

The Suitability of Clark & Wells Cognitive Model of Social Anxiety as a Basis for Treatment Among Adolescents

Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is characterised by an intense and disproportionate fear of social situations, where the individual fears negative evaluation such that the situations are either avoided or endured with much distress (American Psychiatric ...

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Sep 9, 2021

Is E-Therapy a solution to the 'mental health crisis'?

(Opinion) Imagine a highway: a popular multi-lane highway designed many years ago to handle peak-hour traffic. Having reached its maximum capacity for peak hour traffic only a few years later, there are now long queues of cars waiting for hours just to...

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May 28, 2021

CBT for the Treatment of Emotion Regulation in Children with Suspected Autism Traits

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by deficits in social-emotional interaction, and patterns of restricted and repetitive behaviour or interests (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). While currently subsum...

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Oct 31, 2019

The Role of Interoceptive Conditioning in Intuitive Eating (IE) Interventions for Binge Eating: A Conceptual Review

(Psychology) Maladaptive eating behaviour features in a range of psychopathologies. A recent report on national attitudes towards mental health and addiction in New Zealand found widespread concern for the prevalence of eating disorders among young p...

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Oct 29, 2019

Content and Context in Kant’s Anthropology

(Psychology/Philosophy) While Kant’s Anthropology from A Pragmatic Point of View may not be immediately considered as relevant to the history of psychology, it is a notable entry into the historical canon for both its content and context. Unlike his p...

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Oct 1, 2019

Invalidating Childhood Environments as a Risk Factor for Borderline Personality Disorder

(Psychology) Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is a severe disorder with general prevalence rates as low as 1-2%, yet accounts for as much as 10% of all outpatients and 20% of inpatients (American Psychiatric Association, 2013; Biskin, 2015). BPD i...

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Jul 1, 2019

Viral Conformity: Applying a Social Identity Perspective to Moral Outrage on Social Media

(Psychology) Why does moral outrage go viral on social media? Expressions of moral outrage have become a common feature of modern life. Much of this can be attributed to the advent of Social Networking Sites (SNS) which have added new dimensions to the...

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Jun 20, 2019

Majority Rules: The Role of Institutional Decisions on Intergroup Relations Around Moral Issues

(Psychology) In 2016, the United Kingdom held a binding national referendum to determine whether or not it should leave the European Union, with the option to leave winning majority support by a small margin (Wheeler, Seddon, & Morris, 2019). In the im...

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Oct 19, 2018

Personal Identity as Fiction in Hume’s Treatise

(Philosophy) Hume’s initial conception of diachronic identity in the Treatise concludes with the claim that personal identity is a construct of the imagination and is thus a fiction. However, a reading of the subsequent worries he expresses in the appe...

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Aug 24, 2018

Descartes’ Cogito: A Discussion

(Philosophy) In his Meditations on First Philosophy, Descartes presents a possible foundation for a framework of knowledge. Rooted in subjective experience, the cogito is the first self-evident truth upon which all other truths can follow. In §1 of thi...

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Jun 8, 2018

Russell’s objections to Meinong’s Theory of Objects

(Philosophy) Bertrand Russell’s objections to Meinong’s theory concerning non-existent objects is notable for dealing what could have been a fatal blow. In this essay, I shall examine and then critically assess the objections, Meinong’s reply to the ob...

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May 17, 2018

How can social networking sites be used to influence the voting intentions of the public?

(Psychology) Until recently, studies on the influence of news media on voter intention have relied on conventional platforms such as television, newspapers, and news websites. The concept of ‘selective exposure’ was coined to refer to the deliberate an...

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Apr 27, 2018

“Logician, Heal Thyself” : A Therapeutic Reading of Wittgenstein’s Metaphilosophy

(Philosophy) In his book, Philosophical Investigations, Wittgenstein claimed that “The philosopher treats a question; like an illness”.[1] This remark aptly summarises the philosophical framework that his later period of thought advocates. In this essa...

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Mar 30, 2018

Is there an evolutionary explanation for humans’ fascination with stories about non-existent people and events?

(Psychology/Philosophy) Darwin’s theory of evolution comes with such strong explanatory power that it can be applied across a range of contexts that involve natural phenomena. Thus, evolutionary psychologists consider universal aspects of human cogniti...

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Oct 13, 2017

John Locke's Account of Personal Identity

(Philosophy) 1      Introduction Personal Identity (PI) has been the source of ongoing debate among philosophers for centuries and the matter is by no means settled. The 17th Century philosopher John Locke sought to provide an early account of dia...

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Sep 30, 2017

Trolling: Narcissism or Sadism?

(Psychology) Online trolling of social media is a phenomenon with potentially extreme consequences for its victims. Extant research suggests a relationship between trolling and the dark traits of Narcissism and Sadism, but it is not certain which can b...

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Sep 23, 2017

Cause No Harm: An Essay Concerning the Act-Omission Distinction

(Philosophy) In New Zealand, there is a legal distinction between active and passive forms of euthanasia. Passive euthanasia (PE) are forms of hastening death by withdrawing treatment or nutrition, or by sedating the patient until their terminal illnes...

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Jun 2, 2017

Cyberbullying: Deindividuation or Self-Esteem?

(Psychology) The Internet is a tool that has become entrenched in the daily lives of billions of people. It has afforded us with a means of instant communication with each other across the globe. Such Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) can be either...

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