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14. Personality 1.docx
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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYCH 1X03
Professor
T A
Semester
Fall

Description
Personality What is personality?  Difficult to define someone personality  Personality is not real, its an idea;  Hypothetical constructs: an abstract concept that we use because it seems to express or capture something important about out experiences; help us organize and understand out experiences Approaches to Personality  Each approach represents a perspective about personality with a different set of assumptions about what personality is, how it develops and how it should be studied  Type approach: assumes that there are a small number of distinct personality type  Proposed by Hippocrates, he believed that the human body was made of four “humours”: blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile, with personality determined by the balance of these four humours ex. Melancholic (black bile) personality type (sad and wistful)  Psychodynamic approach, humanistic approach, trait approach, cognitive approach Psychodynamic Approach to Personality  Sigmund Freud  Freud’s psychoanalytic theory of personality was the first modern theory of personality, and had an enormous impact on our thinking about personality and human nature  Pioneered the psychodynamic approach to personality, his theory is the first personality theory to take on this approach  The psychodynamic approach sees personality generated by internal psychic structures or process  The characteristics of internal structures in your mind, and they way the interact with each other, determine how we feel and behave  Most psychodynamic theories argue that many of these structures are unconscious, and so we are often unaware of many important aspects of our personality Freud’s Tripartite Model  In the core of his theory  Consists of three personality structures: the Id, the Ego and the Superego The Id  seek pleasure, avoid pain  source of your basic instincts and your motivational energy (libido)  responsibility to seek out water, food, air and sex  focus is to find and experience pleasure and avoid pain  selfish and impatient (wants pleasure now, does not want to wait for pleasure; disregards how that behavior would affect other people) ex. Have to do a group project and want to go to the pub, more you think about it the more you want to go and not meet up with your group  your Id is motivating you to seek out the pleasure associated with going to the pub instead od doing work Superego  focused on upholding moral principles; obeying rules and respecting values  comes into play arounf the age 5 & 6; before then is was up to the parents to teach the rules that they should obey and the valus that they should uphold through rewards and punishment  from this parental control, self-control is established to form the superego  conscience stems from superego The Ego  serves as a mediator between Id and Superego  aware of the outside realty, so its aware of what’s going on in the work outside of the individual  finds a balance between the desires of the Id and the demands of the Superego, at the same time ensuring that it’s realistically possible to do so The Conscious and Unconscious  function consciously and unconsciously  iceberg analogy  the Id functions completely in the unconscious and so we are not directly aware of what the Id is doing  the superego functions predominantly in the unconscious, but a small portion of it falls into the preconscious (just beneath the surface of awareness) and the conscious (of which we are aware)  the ego is fairly equally split into each of the 3 stages of consciousness Defense Mechanisms Development of Defense Mechanisms  Freud  our behavior results from a rocky collaboration between the id, ego and superego.  The ego tries to satisfy id impulses in ways that are safe, and that are consistent with the values of superego  Not always possible  if an id impulse is immoral, even thinking about gratifying it causes the conscious ego to feel moral anxiety; if an id impulse might lead to punishment, just thinking about it causes the conscious ego to feel neurotic anxiety  The conscious ego is protected against anxiety by defense mechanisms created by the unconscious ego  Defense mechanisms keep the conscious ego from feeling anxious by keeping unacceptable id impulses out of consciousness entirely, or by disguising id impulses so that the conscious ego doesn’t feel anxious about them if they reach consciousness Repression  Repression (Simplest defense mechanism)  unconscious ego locks id impulses from ever reaching consciousness  Repressed impulses continue to press for entry into consciousness, and keeping them out takes a lot of the ego’s available energy  Repressed impulses sometimes sneak into consciousness slips of the tongue (Freudian Slips; dream images)  Sometimes and id impulse is so strong that it cannot be kept out of consciousness; it enters the conscious ego and is acted on  if it happens, new defense mechanisms are needed to make sure that the conscious ego does not understand the real nature of what it is thinking, or what it has done, so that it will not feel anxious Denial  Denial (Similar defense mechanism)  the conscious ego engages in the anxiety-producing behavior, but the unconscious ego immediately prevents any memory of the behavior from getting back into consciousness  Although the conscious ego has actually done something dangerous or immoral, it feels no anxiety because it has no memory of the behavior  Denial  the anxiety-producing behavior begins in the conscious ego after a behavior has already occurred  Repression  is used when anxiety is generated from the unconscious id before the behavior has occurred; if successfully repressed, they do not reach consciousness Rationalization  Rationalization  The conscious ego had done something dangerous or immoral, the unconscious ego flood consciousness with plausible, non- threatening reasons for behavior (unconscious ego justifies some conscious action) o No anxiety is experienced because the conscious ego believes that it has engaged in the behavior for perfectly harmless reasons Projection  Projection  anxiety-producing thoughts of impulses are attributed to someone else, perhaps the original target of the impulse Ex. Lets say you really dislike someone and not sure why (guilty) so you may project your feelings on him and convince yourself that it is really the other person who doesn’t like you Reaction Formation  Reaction formation  the conscious ego is protected from anxiety by being filled with ideas and feels that are opposite to the actual impulse Ex. strong attraction towards someone that may not share the same feelings (causes you anxiety). Deal with it by outwardly feeling dislike and disapproval of the person. (Standard part of rom-coms) Displacement  Displacement  the unconscious ego redirects the forbidden impulse away from its original target to a consciously acceptable target, so that the conscious ego doesn’t feel any anxiety. Ex. may not like supervisor and feel aggression towards him, it would be inappropriate to act on this aggression so instead you end up arguing with your friends  Sublimation  Sexual or aggressive impulses are displaced to objects or activities that are socially acceptable  Freud belie
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