History & Systems of Psychology
Chapters 16 & 17 – Psychodynamic Theories
Because of emphasis on unconscious mind, very different from experimental & behavioral psychologies
Did not come from academic or experimental field – came from clinical practice
Also different from medical practice because stressed psychological causes
Idea of unconscious mind & irrational forces/internal conflict present in literature & philosophy (especially existential philosophy)
Incorporated by Freud into a view of human nature and the causes of distress
Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)
1895 Studies in Hysteria with Breuer – major idea of psychoanalysis: hysteria caused by trauma & is manifested in physical symptoms
Hysteria as “symbolic representation” of “repressed” experience
Repression may also be caused by conflict.
Believed trauma underlying hysteria was always sexual – based on reports by his patients of childhood sexual abuse
This was called the “seduction theory.”
Later abandoned theory because of hostile reaction – said the sexual activity was imagined.
Freud - Theories
Structure of personality – id, ego, superego
Governing principle of 3 parts – pleasure, reality, perfection
Anxiety – especially
neurotic anxiety (id vs. ego, hedonistic impulses) and
moral anxiety ( superego vs. ego, guilt)
Freud - Theories
Ego defense mechanisms protect against anxiety by unconsciously distorting reality.
Psychoanalysis - Techniques
Goal of treatment is to bring repressed material to consciousness so that the symptoms associated with it disappear.
Breuer called this the cathartic method. It has also been called the talking cure.
Major techniques are free association, dream analysis, & analysis of transference.
Post-Freudian Thought: Carl Jung (1875-1961)
Protégé of Freud, who was like a father figure to him, falling out led to Jung’s 3-year depression and own self-analysis.
School of thought – “analytic psychology”
Personal unconscious (like Freud) and collective unconscious
Archetypes in collective unconscious are primordial images inherited from our ancestors about universal topics
Wise Old Man
Dreams – a means of giving expression to underdeveloped aspects of the psyche
Self-Realization/Self-Actualization major goal in life
Requires assimilation of unconsciousness into total self
Process of integrating opposites into a harmonious self
Post-Freudian Thought: Alfred Adler (1870-1937)
Another important figure who had an ugly falling out with Freud
Emphasis on social interest – natural capacity to identify with goals of society to achieve a common good. Psychology should foster the development of social interest.
“creative self” – free to choose own destiny (vs. Freud’s pessimism & determinism)
All behavior is goal-directed.
Fictional final goals – may not be realistic
Style of life – unique behaviors moving us toward our goals
Inferiority as a source of motivation
Inferiority complex & compensation
Post-Freudian Thought: Karen Horney (1885-1952)
Trained in psychoanalysis but disagreed with Freud re cause of problems.
Worked with people in US during the Great Depression, dealing with practical life issues.
Came to believe that social interactions were key in cause of problems, thereafter focused on relationships.
Every child has 2 basic needs: safety and having biological needs met.
If needs are not met, the child develops basic hostility, which is repressed and then leads to basic anxiety.
Basic anxiety: a feeling of being alone and helpless in the world
Basic anxiety leads to 1 of 3 unconscious adjustments:
Compliant type moves toward others
Hostile type moves against others
Detached type moves away from others
Result is a fictitious “idealized self” that substitutes for the “real self” and causes blind spots re the discrepancy
Disagreed with Freud’s “anatomy is destiny”
Said women are culturally inferior, not biologically (naturally) inferior
Thought, based on her patients, that men actually envy female anatomy because of ability to bear children and nurse them