PSC 1 Lecture 2: Lecture 2: Scientific Method; Evolution and Behavior
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Lecture 2: Scientific Method; Evolution and Behavior
o Key to mental health is the 'ego'. We get psychopathology when too much of
unconscious conflict and ego gets exhausted and breaks down.
o Seduction theory (abandoned)
• Children get abused when they are little and get PTSD from that
o Inner conflict and repression
• Id has these urges that super ego tries to repress which causes conflict
o Defense mechanisms that people deploy to deal with conflict
• Reaction formation
o Conflict from repression of sexual urges is universal
o Psychopathology occurs when conflict exceeds ego strength
o To get back into better health, we need to go under psychoanalysis. The expert is
going to help the patient explore the inner workings of unconsciousness.
o Bringing the source of inner conflict into consciousness eliminates its power
o Eliminating unconsciousness conflict produces mental health
o Model: Sexual urge --> Conflict --> Anxiety --> Psychopathology
o Unconsciousness conflict is the sole reason of Psychopathology
• Problems with the Psychodynamic approach: Falsifiability
o It's not falsifiable, not subject to test by observation
• Dreams: wish fulfillment of Id through them
▪ Freud: dreams represent wish fulfillment
▪ Critics: what about nightmares?
▪ Freud: nightmares represent the wish that my theory be proven wrong
▪ Freud: all symptoms reflect unresolved sexual conflict
▪ Rat man (patient of Freud who suffered from rat nightmares) : I'm still
▪ Freud: patient is in denial
• Expression of Oedipal complex
▪ Tells people to believe him instead of their own observations
o Failure to consider alternate hypothesis
• All psychopathology is caused by repressed sexual urges
• Critics "what about PTSD?"
• Freud said that 'sexual arousal' includes arousal of 'narcissistic' and self
• "Mechanical concussion must be recognised as one of the sources of sexual
o The effectiveness problem
• If psychodynamic theory is correct then psychoanalysis is necessary and most
• But: cognitive-behavioral approaches are superior in treatment of a variety of
▪ Means that there are others things that work better than psychoanalysis.
• i.e. disorders are cured without removal of the hypothetical source of
• Hypotheses and theories:
▪ Must explain observations
▪ Must generate predications
▪ Must predict what will happen and what will not happen
• Good scientists make alternative hypotheses fight
▪ E.g. Goldberger and Pellagra
• Pellagra: Fatal disease where body falls apart.
• Goldberger's question was: What causes pellagra?
• Hypo 1: bad sanitation
• Good sanitation--> No pellagra
• Bad sanitation--> Pellagra
• Hypo 2: Bad diet
• Is it sanitation or diet?
• Method 1: Subjects Eat
• Scales from sores
• No sickness
• Method 2: