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Psychodynamic Views: Freud and those who followed

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Chapter 9: p335

Focus Questions

What was Freud’s basic view of personality and how it develops?

Freud’s psychoanalytic theory assumes that the core of personality is conflict—springing from a basic pleasure seeking energy call the libido. This theory was the first of what are now called psychodynamic
theories.

A key idea in Freud’s theory of personality is that all humans posses a basic energy called the libido that is directed at satisfying needs, maximizing pleasure, and minimizing pain. Many of the acts that bring pleasure, however, cause conflict as well, which Freud saw as the core of personality.

What major contributions did Freud make to the study of personality?

Freud was the first to develop a comprehensive theory of personality. Freud’s views have had a profound influence on many later Psychodynamic theorists, referred to as psychodynamic theorists.

What aspects of Freud’s psychoanalytic theory were changed by psychodynamic theorist who came after him?

The following are among Freud’s successors who made major modifications to his theory.

  1. Jung with his analytical psychology, rejected Freud’s emphasis on sexuality, introduced the concept of the collective unconscious with its archetypes, and coined the terms introvert and extrovert.
  2. Adler, with his Individual psychology, rejected Freud’s emphasis on sexuality and instead emphasized striving for superiority and social interest.
  3. Horney, with her social psychoanalytic theory, rejected Freud’s emphasis on sexuality and his views on women and introduced the concept of basic anxiety.
  4. Erickson put forth his theory of psychosocial development.
  5. Fromm emphasized social and cultural influences on personality.

Freud’s Psychoanalytic Theory

Psychoanalytic Theory holds that the human mind has three parts, or forces:

  1. the unconscious mind, which includes the id, with its pleasure principle;
  2. the conscious ego, with its reality
    principle;
  3. And the often unconscious superego, with its morality principle.

The primitive id contains the persons’ instinctive drives towards sensuality and aggression.

Freud believed that human psychosexual development takes place in five stages: oral, anal, phallic, latency, and genital.

The superego is acquired as a result of the Oedipus complex, which all children are assumed to undergo between ages 3 and 6.

The central problem in mental disorders, according to classical psychoanalytic theory is anxiety.

Id, Ego, and Superego

Freud conceived of the human personality and mind as having three major components, which he called the id, the ego, and the superego.

INTRAPSYCHIC SYSTEM

 

 

Principle 

   

Id

A basic and primitive part of the mind that is the origin of survival motives and sexual desires, as well as motives for self-destruction and aggression.

Impulses originate in biological needs, and they arouse the id to a state of excitement and tension. 

The Pleasure Principle: the demand of the unconscious id for gratification of desires.

Primary Process

The primary process works to resolve tension created by the pleasure principle. Rather than act on dangerous or unacceptable urges, the id forms a mental image of a desired object to substitute for an urge in order to diffuse tension and anxiety.

Impulses:

Eros: Driven by the Libido, orientated toward self-preservation

Thanatos: directed toward self-destruction that is often turned outward and is the force behind aggression.

Ego

The Conscious part of the mind that includes our knowledge, skills, beliefs, and conscious motives.

Primary function is to obtain objects that will gratify the id. 

The Reality Principle: the principle by which the conscious ego operates as it tries to mediate and balance the demands of the unconscious id and the realities of the environment.

Secondary Process
the secondary process discharges the tension between the ego and the id that is caused by unmet urges or needs. The secondary process functions through the ego’s action of looking for an object in the real world that matches the mental image created by the id’s primary process.

Is the real us as we think of ourselves, including knowledge, skills, beliefs, and conscious motives 

Super Ego

The often unconscious part of the mind that includes the conscience and the ego ideal

The morality Principle: the principle by which the superego tries to govern the ego in accord with the conscience and the ego ideal

The superego is acquired as a result of the Oedipus complex, which all children are assumed to undergo between ages 3 and 6.

Ego ideal: a sense of “right”

Conscience: a sense of “Wrong”


The Internal Battle

The three parts of the mind are often in conflict, and Freud regarded this Intrapsychic conflict as the essence of human personality. One result of the conflict is anxiety, which is produced in the ego. When ever the demands of the id are dangerous or the disapprovals of the superego are intense.

Anxiety arouses the ego to fight the impulses or thoughts that have created it. In one way or another—by using repression and the other defense mechanisms (see chapter 12 notes), by turning the mind’s attention elsewhere, by gratifying some other impulse of the id—the ego defends itself against the threat posed by the id or the superego and minimizes the anxiety.

 

Psychosexual Development

Freud believed that human psychosexual development takes place in five stages: oral, anal, phallic, latency and genital.

Freud’s Psychosexual Stages of Development

Stages

Time of development

 

Oral

Birth to about 18mo

Impulses to be gratified focus on the mouth and tongue; expressed in activities such as sucking and eating.

Fixation can result in an adult’s engaging excessively in oral activities, such as eating, smoking, drinking, or talking, and being overly dependent on others

Anal

18mo to 3yrs.

Impulses to be gratified focus on the anal region; expressed in activities such as eliminating or refraining from it.

Fixation can result in an adult’s being exceedingly stubborn, overly concerned with cleanliness, and meticulously orderly and concerned with minute details (the latter is probably closest to what people mean when they refer to someone as anal)

Phallic

About 3yrs to 5yrs 

Impulses to be gratified focus on the genitals. 

This is the period for resolving the Oedipus complex; fixations may affect sexual orientation

Latency

About 6yrs to 12yrs 

Sexual impulses become dormant. 

 

Genital

Puberty

Sexual impulses begin to reawaken with entrance into puberty and express themselves in adult form. 

 

 

 

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Written by Joseph Eulo

May 28, 2008 at 6:31 am

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