PSYCH101 Lecture Notes - Lecture 45: The Emotions, Oedipus Complex, Information Processing

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10 Aug 2016
Module 45: The Psychoanalytic Perspective
Free association: method of exploring the unconscious in which the person relaxes
and says whatever comes to mind, no matter how trivial or embarrassing
Psychoanalysis: freud’s theory of personality that attributes throughts and actions
to unconscious motives and conflicts, seeking to expose and interpret conscious
Unconscious: reservoir of mostly unacceptable thoughts, wishes, feelings and
memories. Information processing of which we are unaware
Some of these thoughts we store in preconscious area which retrieve later
into conscious awareness
Id: contains a reservoir of unconscious psychic energy that strives to satisfy basic
sexual and aggressive drives. Operates on the pleasure principle demanding
immediate gratification
Ego: largely conscious “executive” part of personality that mediates among the
demands of the id, superego and reality. Operates on reality principle satisfying the
id’s desires in ways that will realistically bring pleasure rather than pain
Superego: part of personality that represents internalized ideals and provides
standards for judgment and for future aspirations (how we ought to behave)
Psychosexual stages: childhood stages of development during which the id’s
pleasure-seeking energies focus on the distinct erogenous zones
Oedipus complex: boy’s sexual desires toward his mother and feelings of jealousy
and hatred for the rival father
Identification: process by which children incorporate their parents’ values into
their developing superegos
Fixation: lingering focus of pleasure-seeking energies at an earlier psychological
stage, in which conflicts were unresolved
Defense mechanisms: psychoanalytic theory, ego’s protective methods of reducing
anxiety by unconsciously distorting reality
Repression: basic defense mechanism that banishes anxiety arousing
thoughts, feelings, and memories from consciousness
Regression: an individual faced with anxiety retreats to more infantile
psychosexual stage where some psychic energy remains fixed
Reaction formation: ego unconsciously switches unacceptable impulses into
their opposites. People may express feelings that are the opposite of their
anxiety arousing unconscious feelings
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