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Structure and functioning of the personality in Freudian Psychoanalytic Theory

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PSYCHOLOGY ESSAY Part a.) Structure and functioning of the personality in Freudian psychoanalytic theory. Sigmund Freud, as the creator of psychoanalytic theory, has begun his career as a neurologist, treating patients with hypnosis to cure hysteria. Because it had almost no affect on curing the patient, he discovered the method of free association, in which patients say whatever comes to their mind. By listening and noticing what patients were saying, he found some similarities in their memories of dreams and their childhood memories. For an easier understanding he compared our mind to an iceberg. One part (that is above the surface) represents our conscious mind; the other part (that is under the surface) represents our unconscious mind. The unconscious mind should not be confused with "being unconscious" and unconsciousness which is loss of consciousness. He claimed that unconscious mind affects the largest part of our thoughts and behavior and that all our emotions and actions have causes in our unconscious mind. Although many people don't agree with Freud, his idea that people react for a reason is accepted. (The Psychopathology of Everyday life - 1901). Most of our behavior is, however, led by our unsatisfied drives and unconscious wishes. ...read more.


Nursing; sucking, swallowing and biting gratify an infant. Gratification may result in trust and independence and over- gratification or frustration may result in passivity, gullibility, immaturity, unrealistic optimism and manipulative personality. The second stage is the anal stage (around 1,5 - 3 years). The focus of gratification shifts to the anal region. Pleasure comes from the process of elimination - retention and expulsion of feces. At the age of two, a child faces a major challenge: toilet training. For the child, bowel movement is intensively pleasurable. The infant experiences the conflicts between the demands of Id and the external world. The parents force the child with their demands about toilet training. The choice is between following the demands of Id or the demands of parents, who are the most important persons in a child's life. The result is either relatively traumatic or stormy and intense. If the parents are moderate, the child eventually learns that self-control and mastery is useful. If the parents are too strict this may result in over - cleanliness or messiness. As ego grows stronger, the child begins to move into the third stage - the phallic stage (3 - 5 years). ...read more.


Their fathers do not raise children, but by their uncles and boys have dreams that something has happened to the uncle. This shows that they are not jealous, but perhaps scared of powerlessness. He proved that the Oedipus complex is not universal. Freud's critics claim that Freud put together pieces of his behavior, of his own children and his patients. He was often too sure of himself. According to Eysenck, he was neurotic and he argued that his theory has to be tested by experiments and observations and its truth or falsity has to be objectively determined. Kline, for instance, thought that his theory should be seen as a collection of hypothesis and Fisher and Greenburg thought that some parts of his theory are true and they should just be reshaped. On the other side, Boring thought that Freud's genius in commonly accepted, despite of his theories. Human personality is relatively fixed. That means that we truly have inborn drives and our personality is determined by them, as well as by environmental events. We also appear from psychoanalytic theory as passive creatures. Our unconscious seems to control all what we say, do and think. And finally, as Freud noted, the goal of psychoanalysis was to ensure that "were Id was, there shall ego be."(1933) page 2 / 5 ...read more.

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