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A Personal Evaluation of the Psychoanalytic Approach to Psychology

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Introduction

A Personal Evaluation of the Psychoanalytic Approach to Psychology Origins and History For many centuries, the treatment applied to those suffering mental disorders was extremely barbaric. It was thought that mental diseases were caused by demons or other supernatural forces. However, real progress in solving the origins of mental illness was achieved by the Austrian mystic and physician, Franz Mesmer. He managed to show that using the power of suggestion when in a trance-like state could cure some mental disorders. Members of the Nancy School argued that suggestion could not only cure mental illness but could also cause it in the first place. The most influential psychoanalyst of recent times is Sigmund Freud. His name is referred to more than any other psychologists in psychology literature. He is well known for his theory on personality development. His fame rests largely on his position as the originator of psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis refers to a complex set of theories about human emotional development. His fame rests largely on his position as the originator of psychoanalysis. Psychoanalysis refers to a complex set of theories about human emotional development and to a form of treatment based on theoretical ideas. ...read more.

Middle

A child who has too little stimulation may become pessimistic aggressive, often depressed, talk, drink and smoke and will see other people as objects to satisfy themselves. On the other hand, children who have too much stimulation will create a child who is easily fooled and have a high opinion of him/herself and will be unable to make decisions. * The second stage, between the ages of 6 months and 3 years, is the anal stage. This stage is dominated by bowel control. The id demands immediate satisfaction (the child wants to relieve itself), however, the ego knows that the parent doesn't want this during potty training and so conflict may arise. As a result, fixation may also occur. Those who become fixated at the anal stage can become one of two types of personality. The anal expulsive personality (children who enjoy getting rid of faeces) will be overgenerous and untidy. The anal retentive personality (children who are forced to get rid of faeces) become obsessive about punctuality and tidiness and become generally miserable. * Next comes the phallic stage between the ages of 3 and 5/6 years. ...read more.

Conclusion

* Projection - assigning your own unacceptable feelings or characteristics towards someone else, for example saying "She hates me" when your true feeling is "I hate her". Personal Evaluation It is thought that psychoanalysis has many successes to its credit. Although others had suggested that mental illness could be treated by psychological means, it was Freud who was the first to develop a systematic form of treatment for neuroses. From this a number of other psychotherapies have been devised. Psychoanalytic theory also has had some successes. For example, the idea that childhood experiences play a part in determining adult behaviour is now commonplace but was revolutionary when Freud first suggested it, and the suggestion that much important activity occurs below the conscious level now has plenty of strong evidence to back it up. The major problem, however, is that we do not know yet exactly why psychoanalytic therapy is effective. It is thought that what a patient says may have more to do with what the therapist says than what the unconscious mind of the client is thinking. Another problem is that Freud's theories were presented in such unscientific ways that it is always impossible to prove or disprove his theories. Numerous studies have shown psychoanalytic theory to be true but just as many have shown inconclusive evident to support such a theory. ...read more.

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