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Personality Lecture 4

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Oren Amitay

Lecture 4 ALFRED ADLER History Experienced childhood illness and several injuries; developed fear of death Average student but rose to superior position especially in mathematics Studied medicine at the University of Vienna Was President of the International Psychoanalytic Association, but disagreed with Freuds perspectives Adlers Basic Concepts Emphasized the importance of human culture and society in the development of individual personality Social Interesturge in human nature to adapt oneself to the conditions of the social environment Finalismindividuals are oriented towards goals that guide their behaviour, many of which cannot be proven and are judged by their usefulness o We try to make sense of our lives, eg. Why are we in school? o HUGE POINT: Adler was future oriented didnt worry about the past, looked at how the person feels about their lives and how they are o Nothing is set in stoneit is how we make sense of our experienceOnly way we can make sense is by the outcome Fictional Finalism Narratives Control o Most important goal of humansMASTER THEIR ENVIRONMENT o Almost all problems in life can be traced back to a matter of Control Adlers Basic Concepts When he talked about controlcoined Superiority Complexity and Inferiority ComplexLife is about striving for something o Striving for SUPERIORITYthe drive for competence and effectiveness in whatever one strives to do o INFERIORITY feelings arise from childhood dependence and lead us to strive for superiority o Initially associated inferiority with femininity but later realized that society played a role in perpetuating male dominance: MASCULINE PROTEST (similar to Freuds Penis envy) o Suggested that exaggerated masculinity-- Adler overcame a lot of Adversityhe assumed it was normal for most people to do Peoples perceptions shape how we see the world
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