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2301-Neo-Freudian Theory

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Jamie Kleinman, PhD

on 1 October 2018

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Transcript of 2301-Neo-Freudian Theory

Personal and social identity
Some people may be best defined by the personal (traditional ego) perspective and some might be best defined by the social view (Briggs)

Modern Approaches
Unconcerned with biology and fixed personality structures
A hodgepodge of different ideas from different traditions
Relies on abstract or vague concepts

Neo-Analytic and Ego Approach
Eight stages
Each stage is dependent on the outcome of the previous stage
Ego crisis: conflicts within the self that must be resolved in sequence in order for optimal growth to occur
Importance of balance (e.g. want to trust, but not to be too trusting)

Erikson-Stages of Identity
Ego is more independent
Importance of individualization and mastery
Role of society
Primary needs are relational
Pervasive influence of these ideas (attachment theory)

May be viewed as relatively narrow perspectives individually

Object Relations – Strengths and Weaknesses
When alienated from the Real Self, people develop neurotic coping strategies
Moving toward
Striving to make others happy and gain love, approval, and affection
Over-identify with despised self
Moving against
Striving for power and recognition; over-identify with ideal self
Moving away
Withdrawal of emotional investment to avoid hurt; desire to overcome despised but incapable of ideal

Karen Horney
Basic anxiety: child’s fear of being alone, helpless and insecure
Driven by relationships with parents
Styles of coping with basic anxiety
Passive style: be compliant
Aggressive style: fight
Withdrawn style: don’t engage emotionally

Karen Horney – Basic Anxiety
Women develop feelings of inferiority because of how they are raised in society
Masculinity = strong, competent
Femininity = inferior, weak
Women don’t want a penis, they want the autonomy and control that comes with being male
Men may also envy feminine qualities (e.g. ability to bear children)

Karen Horney – Feminist Perspective
Highlighted importance of interactions with the environment
Stressed importance of parenting

Still focused on “drives” (like Freud)

Adler – Strengths and Weaknesses
Occupational tasks: choose and pursue a career that makes you feel worthwhile
Societal tasks: develop friendships and social networks
Love tasks: find a suitable life-partner
One’s libido (life energy) is used to pursue life goals

Alfred Adler – Social Issues
4 functions
2 attitudes
8 types (4 x 2)
Each person has a “best fit” to one type
Determined by the person’s dominant function and dominant attitude
Forms the basis of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Carl Jung
Four functions of the mind
Sensing: Is something there?
Thinking: What is it that is there?
Feeling: What is it worth?
Intuiting: Where did it come from and where is it going?
Rational vs. Irrational
Rational: involve judgment and reasoning
Irrational: conscious reasoning not involved

Carl Jung – Functions
Male element in a woman/female element in a man
Persona and Shadow
Socially acceptable front vs. dark and unacceptable side of personality
Embodiment of generativity and fertility
Hero and Demon
Strong force for good vs. cruelty and evil

Carl Jung
The personal unconscious
Contains thoughts that are not currently part of conscious awareness
Not only threatening and unacceptable material, but all non-conscious material
Unimportant vs. repressed
Contains past and “future” material
Carl Jung

The conscious part of personality
Embodies the sense of self
Developed at age 4

Carl Jung
Based on Freudian psychoanalytic approach
Theorists expanded the perspective to more broadly describe the “self”
More focused on social influences
Rejected idea personality formed by age 6
Challenged instinctual source of personality
Disliked negative tone

Neo-Freudian approach
Self-monitoring (Snyder)
Self-observation /self-control influenced by situational cues to social appropriateness of behavior
Self-presentation: doing what is socially expected

Functionalism (Snyder)
Behavior and thought evolve based on how functional they are for survival

Modern Approaches
View of free will:
Thought personality is largely determined by unconscious forces, individuals do have the ability to overcome these

Role of Conscious:
People aware of motivations and needs.

Early experiences:
Personality shaped by early experiences.
Neo-Analytic and Ego Approach
Importance of the goal-oriented nature of humans
Acknowledges impact of society and culture
Development continues throughout the life cycle
Emphasizes the self as it struggles to cope with emotions on the inside and the demands on the outside

Neo-Analytic and Ego Approach
Erik Erikson

Heinz Kohut
Fear of loss (of parent)
Narcissistic personality disorder

Object Relations Theories
Object relations theories: individual learns about self through interactions with other people
“Object” refers to mental representation of important people (usually the mother/ father)
Melanie Klein
The first significant child psychoanalyst
Developed technique of play therapy
Relational perspective

Object Relations Theories
Focus on impact of family/parenting and the role of society and culture
Recognized that psychoanalysis is not the only way to resolve internal conflict

Difficulty integrating her theory into the male-dominated field, especially at that time

Karen Horney – Strengths and Weaknesses
Real Self
Inner core of personality
Despised Self
Feelings of inferiority and shortcomings
Ideal Self
One’s views of perfection
Molded by perceived inadequacies
“Tyranny of the should”

Karen Horney – The Self
Freud: ego is servant of Id
Adler: ego is independent of Id

Freud: All behavior determined by unconscious
Adler: Conscious strivings as important as unconscious motivation

Source of behavior
Freud: psychic determinism
Adler: early recollections

Adler & Freud
Born in Vienna, Austria
Personal contributions to his theory
Childhood illness
Near death experience
Birth order

Alfred Adler
Deviated from Freud around motivation and ego
Embraced mystical/spiritual aspects

Did not utilize a scientific approach; seems to have some wisdom in it

Carl Jung – Strengths and Weaknesses
The two major attitudes of the mind:
Directs psychic energy toward things in the external world
Directs psychic energy inward

Carl Jung
A “complex” is a group of emotionally charged thoughts, feelings, or ideas that are related to a particular theme
E.g., inferiority complex
Libido: psychic energy or “value;” determines the strength of a complex
Assessed through word association task

Carl Jung

The collective unconscious
A deeper level of the unconscious
Shared with the rest of humanity
Contains archetypes
Universal emotional symbols

Carl Jung
Identity formation = lifelong process
Individuals change as they age
Experiences and relationships impact our personality
We have some responsibility for our lives

Erik Erikson – Identity Formation
Margaret Mahler
Theory of symbiosis (mother-child)
Symbiotic psychotic (no sense of self)
normal symbiotic (healthy ego)
Emphasized the importance of parenting skills

Object Relations Theories
Anna Freud
Valued influence of the social environment
Worked directly with children
Saw the ego as more proactive and independent than her father did

Heinz Hartmann--“Father of Ego Psychology”
Ego’s purpose is to help a person function
in the world
Individual is NOT just a tension-reduction pleasure-seeking organism

Other Neo-analytic Theorists
Birth order and family dynamics
First-born children
Second-born children
Last-born children

Current findings (Frank Sulloway)
First born: success and achievement
Later born: revolutionary and creative

Birth Order
The mind/psyche has three parts:

The personal unconscious
The collective unconscious

Carl Jung
Carl Jung
Alfred Adler
Erik Erikson
Karen Horney
Neo-Freudian Theories
“Psychic birth” of individual does not take place until adolescence; personality develops across the lifespan
Self-realization is a teleological process of development that involves:
Individualization and transcendence

Carl Jung-Self-Realization
The goal of psychotherapy is to reconcile unbalanced aspects of personality
Therapy involves a number of different methods
Described as a dialogue between patient and doctor, and the unconscious and conscious
Dreams have prospective and compensatory functions
Amplification method of dream interpretation
Jungian Psychotherapy
Creative self: interprets experiences of the organism and establishes a person’s style of life.
Individuals create their own personalities
Consciousness central to personality – we can understand our motives through self-examination
This view is opposite of Freud’s emphasis on the unconsciousness

Adler’s Basic Concepts
Style of life: unique way each individual seeks to cope with environment and develop superiority
Four types:
Ruling type
Getting type
Avoiding type
Socially useful type
Influenced by:
Family constellation (birth order)
Family atmosphere (quality of emotional relationships in the family)

Adler’s Basic Concepts
Striving for superiority: the drive for competence and effectiveness in whatever one strives to do
Inferiority feelings arise from childhood dependence and lead us to strive for superiority (organ inferiority)
Initially associated inferiority with femininity but later realized that society played a role in perpetuating male dominance
Suggested that exaggerated masculinity had negative impact on men and women

Adler’s Basic Concepts
Emphasized the importance of human culture and society in the development of individual personality
Social interest: urge in human nature to adapt oneself to the conditions of the social environment
Finalism: individuals are oriented towards goals that guide their behavior, many of which cannot be proven and are judged by their usefulness (fictional finalisms)

Adler’s Basic Concepts
Neuroses: unrealistic life goals (fictional finalisms)
Compensation – Overcompensation
Inferiority Complex – Superiority Complex
Mistaken Style of Life (safeguarding tendencies)
Establish contact and win confidence of patient
Aims to restore patient’s sense of reality; examine and disclose errors in goals and style of life; cultivate social interest

Adlerian Psychotherapy
Erik Erikson
Key function of ego is to create a sense of identity:
Body Ego-image of physical self
Ego Ideal-image of people you admire and emulate
Ego Identity-what you think of yourself and the roles you play
Erik Erikson-Therapy
Egalitarian relationship
Avoided labels
Difficulties normal part of life
Ego inflation
Object Relations
Learning Objectives
Discuss the work of 4 prominent Neo-Fruedians (Jung, Adler, Erikson, Horney)
Discuss Object Relations Theory as a lead-in to attachment theory
Discuss strengths and weaknesses

Three-minute essay
Full transcript