Theodore Adorno et al (1950)
Facism Scale (F-Scale)
Adorno et al administered the test to a sample of 2,000 Americans. Respondents were asked their strength of agreement or disagreement with statements so that researchers could determine their attitudes towards religious and ethnic minorities, their views on politics and economics, and their moral values.
About 1/10, equally balanced between male and female, were interviewed in more depth under the supervision of Adorno's co-author, Else Frenkel-Brunswik . This sub-sample consisted of one group which had expressed the most prejudiced and authoritarian views and one group which had expressed the least such views. The males were equally balanced between high and low scorers in authoritarianism but the females were divided between 25 high and 15 low. The groups, matched on age, political and religious affiliation, and national or regional background, were compared to see which other factors seemed to give rise to the Authoritarian Personality.
The study was severely criticised by Roger Brown (1965) who thought the structure of the test invited  acquiescence responses - ie: the respondents agree with one item because they've agreed with other items.
Robert Rosenthal (1966) pointed out that the interviewers knew both the hypothesis and the interviewees' test scores. Therefore, there was more than a possibility of researcher bias influencing the process and, therefore, the results.
personality type submissive to authority figures
prone to unquestioning obedience
And hostile to those who don't obey.
treats those beneath with contempt
Adorno et al identified disguised sadism as an element in the Authoritarian Personality.
stereotypic thinking
intolerant of ambiguity Click branch for 'hidden notes'
Adorno et al postulated that the authoritarian personality projects their own unacceptable sexual and aggressive impulses onto minority groups and, thus, finds them threatening.
rigid beliefs in conventional values
childhood maltreatment by father leads to Repression and Displacement Click branch for 'hidden notes'
Frenkel-Brunswik (1942) found that authoritarian-type personalities were likely to have been strictly treated as a child and punished for disobedience.
Adorno et al's theory was that the maltreated child would repress the hostility towards his father. Consequently the child seems to idolise his parents and in later life acts in a submissive way towards authority figures.
However, there is still much hostility towards the parents lying below the surface which is displaced onto non-threatening minority groups as prejudice & discrimination.
The idea that the Authoritarian Personality developed from children's upbringing has been criticised as an explanation of Germany's embrace of the Nazis. Extreme anti-Semitism developed during the Nazi era (1932-45), a relatively short period and one deemed far too short for a large-scale change in German parenting styles.
It should be noted here that Adorno had a background in Psychoanalitic Theory which may have influenced him placing undue emphasis on unresolved childhood conflicts with parents having an unconscious influence on behaviour.