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Transcript of Erik Erikson
Not too long after Erik moved to the U.S. and changed his name to Erik Erikson he got offered a teaching position at Harvard. While working at Harvard Erik also had his own private practice in children psychoanalysis.
Some Other School's Erik Worked At:
- the University of California at Berkely
- the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute
- Austen Riggs Center
- the Center for Advanced Studies of the Behavioural Sciences.
Erik noted that children develop a sense of trust when their parents/caregivers provide reliabilty, care, and affection. If the caregivers are not reliable, don't care and aren't affectionate there will be mistrust.
The Name Game
Erik as a young child.
Now that you have learnt all about Erik Erikson's life it is time for you to learn why he is one the most influential Psychologists not to mention the best.
Erik was not a good student, although he gratuated from a school were he had studied Latin, Greek, German Literature and History he was not the best. After Erik had finished highschool he spent the follwing seven years as a travelling artist and travelled around Europe. At the age of 25 Erik recieved an invitation to work at a school for English and Amercian kids. Erik accepted the invitation and taught the kids Art and History, while at his job he became acquainted with the Freud family (Sigmund & Anna). The Freud's watched Erik for a whlie and then decided that he would be an
excellent candidate for psychoanalytic training
(candidates could not apply, they were chosen).
Part of Erik's intrest in identity had sparked from his experience at school as a young child. When Erik was little he was teased for being Nordic which is tall with blonde hair and blue eyes and at one point in his life Erik had been rejected from a grammer school because he had a Jewish background.
Identity Fact 2
Erik's mother Karla Abrahamsen came from a Jewish family in Copenhagen. As for Erik's father, little is known about him other then the fact that he was danish. Erik's biological father and Karla were no longer together by the time Erik was born. But when he was born Karla had been married to a Jewish stockbroker named Valdemar Isidor Salomonsen. So when
Erik was born on June 15th 1092
in Frankfurt, Germany he was given the surname of Salomonsen. Three years after (1905) Erik was born Karla divorced and re-married to a man named Theodor Homberger. In 1908 Erik's name had been changed from Erik Salomonsen to Erik Homberger. Then in 1911 Theodor Homberger offically adopted Erik. When Erik moved to the U.S. and became an Amercian citizen (1939) he changed his last name to Erikson.
1902 - Erik Salomonsen 1905 - Erik Homberger 1939 - Erik Erikson
While he was teaching he met a woman named Joan Serson who was teaching dance at the same school Erik worked at. Erik and Joan ended up marrying and having four children (Kai, Jon, Sue and Neil) together.
After meeting the Freud family, Anna decided to become Erik's mentor and Erik became her patient. He paid her seven dollars a month and saw her everyday.
A Breif Backstory on Erik Erikson
Identity Fact 1
As you know Erik was raised by his mother and stepfather, who Erik thought was his biological dad. He was not told until later on in his life that his stepfather wasn't his real dad. This lead him to question his indentity.
Erik notes that adults need to create/nurture things that will eventually outlast them. Having children often does this because they can nurture their kid(s). He says that success will lead to a feeling of usefulness and accomplishment. Failure will only result in one thing, shallow involvement in the world
Maturity (65-Death) - Integrity vs. Despair
Teenager/Adolesence (12-18 Years Old) - Identity vs. Role Confusion
Grade-Schooler/School Age (6-11 Years Old) - Industry vs. Inferiority
Erik published many books that included his theories. They are listed below.
Childhood and Society
Insight and Responsibility
Identity: Youth and Crisis
Dimensions of a New Identity
Life History and the Historical Moment
The Life Cycle Completed
was awarded a Pulitzer Prize and a National Book Award.
Erikson's Psychosocial Stages Theory: Explaination
Erikson's theory unlike Freud's psychosexual stages theory, describes the impact of social experiences throughout one's lifespan.
Ego identity is a principle component
in Erikson's psychosocial stage theory development. Erik believes that our ego identity is
constantly changing because of new experiences and material that we get from our daily interactions with people
. In each stage Erik thought that people experienced conflict, which acts as a turning point in development.
Infancy (Birth to 18 Months) - Trust vs. Mistrust
Early Childhood/Toddler (2-3 Year Olds) - Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt
Erik believes that children (2-3) need to develop an apperciation of personal control rather than physcial skills and a sense of independence. He noted that "success leads to feelings of autonomy, failure results in feelings of shame and doubt," (http://psychology.about.com).
Preschool (3-5 Year Olds) - Initiative vs. Guilt
Erik says that children (3-5) need to start stressing control and power over the enviroment. Success at this stage should lead to a sense of purpose. Some children who try to exert too much power could possibly experience disapproval, which can result with a sense of guilt.
Erik infers that children need to learn how to handle new social and academic difficulties. He says that success will lead to a sense of competence, where as failure will result in a feeling of inferiority.
Young Adult (19-40 Years Old) - Intimacy vs. Isolation
Middle-age Adult (40-65 Years Old) - Generativity vs. Stagnation
Erik believes that teens need to develop a sense of self as well as personal identity. He pronounces that success can lead to an ability to stay true to yourself, whereas failure could possibly lead to role confusion and a weak sense of self.
Erik states that young adults need to form intimate and loving relationships with others. He believes that success will lead to a solid relationship, whereas faliure might result in loneliness and isolation
Erik thinks that adults should look back on their life and feel a sense of fulfillment/satisfaction. Success at this stage will lead to good feelings such as wisdom. Failure at this stage will only result in negative feelings such as bitterness, despair and regret.
Erik recieved a certificate from the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society. He also earned his teaching degree and a certificate in the Montessori method.
Introduction to Erikson's Psychosocial Stages Theory
Many anthropologists like Franz Boas and Margaret Mead, as well as Sigmund Freud's theories influenced Erik (not to mention is own expirences with psychoanalysis) which is why he began to formulate his own original viewpoints on childhood development. Erik was able to produce a theory of development that was universal. His theory was the
8 distinct stages of development
(in contrast to Freud's 5). Erik concluded that in order to be negotiated successfully, "the individual must find the balance of each vaule," (http://www.nndb.com/people/151/000097857/).
"The ego develops as it successfully resolves crises that are distinctly social in nature. These incolve establishing a sense of trust in others, developing a sense of identity in society, and helping the next generation prepare for the future," (http://www.simplypsychology.org/Erik-Erikson.html)
Erik's studies show that identity crises are most common in the teenage years. It's shown that individuals who succeed in resolving the crisis will be ready to face future challenges in life. But, identity crises may be recurring as the world changes and demands people to redefine themselves. Erik says that it is most common for people to experience an identity crisis when they lose "a sense of personal sameness and historical continuity," (http://www.ericberne.com/erik-erikson-biography).
Did you know that given today's rapid development in techonology and world politics, identity crises are expected to be
more common now than 30 years ago
, when Erikson formed his theory.
Although Erik Erikson only created one theory it was a very important one that had a lot of hardwork put into it. The Psychosocial Stages Theory is still revelant now which makes his work even more amazing considering he didn't know at the time if identity crises would continue on/become greater. Even though Erik had an amazing theory he was also a well rounded person that almost everyone can relate to.
Fun Fact 2!
Most people think that Erik and Joan only had three children together this is because one child, Neil, did not live with them. Neil was born with severe downsyndrome as well as psychical handicaps, and the doctors predicted that he would only live for 2 years. With the help of other people Erik and Joan made the decision to have Neil institutionalized. They told their other three children that Neil had died however the truth came out eventually. But the good news is, Neil lived for 21 years.
"Erik Erikson (1902–1994) - Career, Contribution." - Development, History,
Children, and Stage. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014.
"Erikson's Psychosocial Stages Summary Chart." Erikson's Psychosocial
Stages Summary Chart. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Oct. 2014.
"Related Materials." Erik Erikson's Psychosocial Theory of Human
Development, Eight Crisis Stages Human Life-cycle, for Teaching and
Learning, Child Development. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2014.
"Biography of Erik Erikson | Psychologist | Developed Identity Crisis." Eric
Berne MD. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014.
"Understanding Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development." About. N.p.,
n.d. Web. 05 Oct. 2014.
"What is Psychology?" Essentials. n.p.: Wadsworth
Pub, 2012. Web.
"How Erik Erikson's Own Identity Crisis Shaped His Theories." About. N.p.,
n.d. Web.01 Oct. 2014.
"Erik Erikson." Erik Erikson. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2014.
"Erik Erikson." Simply Psychology. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Oct. 2014.
Erik retired from Harvard in 1970 but he still continued to write, do research and occasionally give a lecture. But in 1980 serious health problems forced him into full retirement. Erik had developed prostate cancer and
died peacefully in his sleep in 1994 at the age of 91
By: Madison Tomlinson