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Lecture

PSY751 Lec 8

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSY 751
Professor
Mark Cole
Semester
Winter

Description
Lecture #8 (03/02/2009) Humanistic Perspectives Remember cognitive theorists from last week. One of the advances the cognitive theorists were making over and above the behaviorists and psychoanalysts is that they considered the idiosyncratic ways in which people interpret their environment and their internal states. Emphasis on what constructs or what attributes, people put the most value upon, or ruminated the most about in their own lives. Humanistic Psychology • “Third force” in psychology (Maslow) (between psychoanalysis and radical behaviorism) [kind of like a 3 way of doing it]. • Psychoanalysist were focused on drive states and internal states and inherent tendencies.  so they focused on biological determinism. • And behaviorist focused more on consequences of behavior, passive and active learning.  so they focused on environmental determinism Humanistic Psychology tends to focus on the role of the self and orienting and directing behavior. So looking at the self and ones interaction with the environment and also in interactions with what one achieves. Some people viewed the self as an unnecessary hold over from the philosophical psychology. • Derives from phenomenological philosophy (phenomenal philosophers emphasized the study of study of consciousness as experienced from “first-person” perspective) [from a unique individualistic perspective.] {that reality was what is experienced.} – Emphasizes study of consciousness as experienced from “first-person” perspective • Focuses on conscious awareness of needs, personal autonomy, choice and responsibility A lot of other theorists focused on unconscious. So humanists tend to put primary focus on individual’s needs, individual’s will power and focusing on the decisions that they make and the ideas that they are attempting to satisfy and really putting primacy on autonomy. And this is one way that they can be criticized. Humanistic psychology  you can say it is a very American psychology, diff cultures put dif values on autonomy and growth of self versus collective responsibility. So maybe humanists are focusing on living well according to one culture’s standards of living well. Abraham Harold Maslow (1908-1970) Started off interested in behaviourism and more biological forms of psychology. And then he changed, after birth of 1 child. “Can I really account for the wonder of the development of my own child by making it under the power of the same forms of learning that govern pigeons and rats?” People have Hobbies (waste time and money)... so why do people do it? Cuz they enjoy it. And for humanists this is one phenomenon worth studying in its own right. So they focus on why people do things on their own terms rather than trying to understand the influence from an externally imposed framework. Maslow was influenced by WW2. Others such as Freud focused on “how could people do such horrible things” Maslow is like “ok ppl are capable of doing bad things” and put effort into trying to understand why people do good things like “why would people make sacrifices to educate their children, or give money or charities” The Hierarchy of Needs (Maslow) • Some needs seen as coming from a personal drive to grow rather than to remedy a deficit – Thus differs from Freud, Murray, McClelland, etc. Other people saw needs as drive states, to remedy a deficit. And these theories had a negative feedback loop.. You have a drive and then you perform a behavior to quell the drive and then the drive disappears. Do something and it reduces the drive. Humanistic perspective on needs also focuses on behavior motivated by the desire to grow and develop and attain one’s potential. • “Lower” needs have developmental primacy  Means they emerge first, these are basic needs, possibly cuz we share these with our evolutionary ancestors. • “Lower” needs must be satisfied first (Maslow does argue that people have a need to fulfill basic needs first and then once those are done they pursue higher needs.) – Exceptions to this general rule? At the bottom, we have physiological needs. These are basic needs for life. And once we have satisfied basic needs we can look for higher up needs. As we start going up the pyramid we can see that some of these needs involve other people. Safety+Security  person wants stable, predictable, organized environment. Love + belonging  feel psychological intimacy First four are deficiency needs  trying to fulfill a deficiency. Being/Growth Motives  basically he thought that everyone had untapped potential that can be achieved if everything else below it on the hierarchy of needs was satisfied. Key here is that the person has to choose to do so. Choice occurs here, self-actualization doesn’t just happen, a person has to make an effort to achieve it. The other needs are obvious and demand satisfaction if we are not attempting to do it. Some people commit their self to a life of poverty to achieve a higher goal. Gandhi didn’t eat for a bigger cause. Don’t need to satisfy lower needs in order to achieve higher needs. But ideally, according to Maslow, these people would have the deficiency motives satisfied before attempting to indulge in these Being/Growth motives. In order to achieve self-actualization, there is no external standard
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