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Lecture Two

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Western University
Psychology 2035A/B
Doug Hazlewood

PSYCHODYNAMIC AND TRAIT September 16 , 2013 Prologue: Defining Personality • Individual differences in traits and behavior that are stable over time and consistent across situations. • Question: Where do these stable and consistent individual differences come from? Part One: The Origins of Personality • Behavioral Perspectives (Pavlov, Skinner, Bandura; pages 43-50) • Humanistic Perspectives (Rogers, Maslow; pages 51-55) • Biological Perspectives (pages 55-58) Freud’s Psychodynamic Perspective (pages 35-41) • Specialized in neurology • Came into contact with patients who had hysteria o A. Hysteria: unusual symptoms (but no physical basis)  E.g., glove anesthesia (see photo, p. 452) • A person loses feeling in their hand from the wrist downwards.  Childhood sexual experiences with adults are the cause of hysterical symptoms?  Overtime he became convinced that this probably didn’t happen. • No; memories were too inconsistent of patients • A patient might first say that it was with an older uncle, but then later say that it was with her father (they should’ve remembered who abused her if it was true) • But why are they saying this?  Fantasies (patients were reporting what they wished would happen)?  Free association and the “talking cure”. • Why is free association effective? o B. The Topology of the Mind  The conscious mind: Everything we are aware of at a given moment.  The (motivated) unconscious mind: Wishes, desires, impulses that are beyond our conscious awareness. • Kept there because they are threatening or upsetting (unacceptable “sexual” or “aggressive” content).  By probing the unconscious (with free association) he could make the unconscious conscious (and cure his patients) INTERLUDE: Probing the Unconscious—A case of obsessive thinking • A 29 year old mind had an obsessive thought • Obsessive Thought (Conscious) o “If I have sexual intercourse…my niece will die” • Unconscious Thoughts • When he thought about having sex, it was linked to another thought: • “I’ll think of being married” • Which would lead to “I’ll remember that my fiancée can’t have children” • Which lead to “I’ll become jealous of my sister who can have children” • Which led to “I’ll be angry with her having a child” • Which led to “I’ll resent my niece” • Which led to “I’ll wish my niece was ill” • And that was linked to the conscious thought that “My niece will die.” • When these unconscious thoughts were brought to the surface, the conscious thought disappeared. o C. Three Structures of the Mind (page. 37)  (1) The Id (a chaos; cauldron of excitations) • Exists entirely in the unconscious, • Reflects instinctive needs (e.g., food, sex) o The basic instinct: Eros (the life instinct)  An unconscious instinct to survive and reproduce o Eros produces a “psychic energy” (Libido)  Must be released • Id operates according to Pleasure Principle (seeks immediate gratification of needs) • Id engages in Primary Process Thinking (fantasies that satisfy needs)  (2) The Ego • Operates on both conscious and unconscious levels • The Ego is an extension of the Id • Operates according to the Reality Principle (tries to satisfy the Id) o Sensitive to demands of the real world; willing to delay gratification of the Id’s needs) • Engages in Secondary Process Thinking (develops realistic plans to satisfy needs).  (3) The Superego • Reflects the moral component of the person (embodies what is right and wrong) • Both involves the conscious and unconscious • It tends to be irrational and doesn't have a good grasp on reality (develops by the age of 3) • Produces guilt when rules are broken  The 3 structures interact with each other (negotiate how libidinal energy will be used) • Ego has the toughest job (must control Id and Superego) o Has to control Superego so we aren’t consumed by guilt over actions o D. How the Ego stays in control:  1. Anxiety signals loss of control: • Threats from ID  neurotic anxiety • Threats from the Superego  moral anxiety  2. Defense Mechanisms (allow Ego to stay in control; reduce anxiety. See textbook, pages 38-39) o E. Personality Development (pages 39-41; how libidinal energy is expressed & focused as we mature)  Psychosexual Development  Controversial (kids have sexual fantasies?!)  To Freud, sex = needs & desires related to “physical pleasure” • 1 month old (sexual behavior = sucking) • 4 yea
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