My College Class Notes

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Fromm’s Social Psychoanalytic Theory

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Fromm emphasized social and cultural influences on personality.

Erich Fromm

German-born psychoanalyst Erich Fromm believed that psychological problems often result when an individual feels isolated from society.

Erich Fromm (1900-1980), American psychoanalyst, best known for his application of psychoanalytic theory to social and cultural problems. He was born in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, and educated at the universities of Heidelberg and Munich and at the Psychoanalytic Institute in Berlin. He immigrated to the United States in 1934 and subsequently became a citizen.

Fromm was recognized as an important leader of contemporary psychoanalytic thought (see Psychoanalysis). According to his views, specific personality types are related to specific socioeconomic patterns. He broke away from biologically oriented theories to see humans as products of their culture. He also felt that attempts should be made to create harmony between the drives of the individual and the society in which the individual lives. Fromm’s many publications include Escape from Freedom (1941), Man for Himself (1947), The Forgotten Language (1951), The Sane Society (1955), The Art of Loving (1956), Sigmund Freud’s Mission (1956), Beyond the Chains of Illusion (1962), The Heart of Man (1964), and The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness (1973).


Social Psychoanalytic

The term for Jung’s approach to psychoanalytic theory. 

Fromm’s Five Basic Needs 


This need stems from the fact that human beings have lost the union with nature that other animals possess. It must be satisfied by human relationships based on productive love (which implies mutual care, responsibility, respect, and understanding)


The need to rise above one’s animal nature and to become creative. 


The need for a feeling of belonging, best satisfied by feelings of affiliation with all humanity.


The need to have a sense of personal identity, to be unique. It can be satisfied through creativity or through identification with another person or group. 

A frame of orientation

The need for a stable and consistent way of perceiving the world and understanding its events.

Written by Joseph Eulo

May 28, 2008 at 7:09 am

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