SOC SCI H1F Lecture 8: Sigmund Freud and Psychoanalysis

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LECTURE 8
February 2, 2017
Sigmund Freud and Psychoanalysis
Freud
Born: May 6, 1856 in Pribor, Czech Republic
Died: September 23, 1939 in Hampstead, United Kingdom
Lived in Vienna, Austria for most of his life
His theories are probably the best overall to capture essence of the human psychology
Introduction
Four facets of Freudian psychoanalysis can be discerned:
o A comprehensive theory of human personality
o A method for conducting psychotherapy
o An approach for the understanding of culture and politics
o An individual guide for navigating the difficulties associated with living
Basically, Freud wanted to study what people think about on a daily basis
o His emphasis was upon self-knowledge in the management of our lives
o The difference between the conscious and the unconscious mind
Long-ter eor i psholog, the uosious id to Freud
The knowledge we have not only scientific or technical, but
about our life o’t e i osiousess eause osiousess
would be overwhelmed
As long as your brain stays intact, you have those long-term
memories all of your life, always available
o If we really want to manage our lives, we have to know ourselves
Ko thself “orates
Freud was a great believer in knowing yourself
To make our lives as productive and happy as possible
Life is tough and we have to do our best to cope with it
o Freud does’t proise a utopia
o Freud is a realist
A message of pessimism
o We have to adapt to our environments, which change frequently
Psychological adaptation
(e.g.) adaptation to college life
Freud and Vienna
Freud is Jewish
As a child, moved to Vienna
o The capital city of the Hapsburg (Austro-Hungarian) Empire
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o Royal city well known for its art, literature, music, commerce, and scientific
achievements
The scientific interests of the Viennese included the study of mental illness and sexual
behavior, which began before Freud came of age
o A professor at the University of Vienna, the renowned Baron Richard von Krafft-
Ebing, defined the symptoms of the mental illness of paranoia and also provided
one of the first scientific studies of human sexual perversions
Paranoia is the suspiio that ou’re a target, that soethig e.g. the
world) is out against you
There is a difference between reality out there and the reality we
perceive
We hope that they are in sync, but many times they are not
Our minds manufacture our very own reality
o We believe our own thoughts
o If our thoughts are psychotic, we got a problem
Human sexual perversions
Outside the norm
The sexual desire in humans are so strong that there’s a ariet of
ways to express it
o Some are not condoned by society, so the’re ko as
perversions
(e.g.) having sex with dead bodies
o Freud came to know Krafft-Eig’s ork durig his tie as a edial studet
Durig Freud’s earl ad iddle adulthood, Vienna was a city slipping into crisis (given
the gradual decline of the Hapsburg Empire under the long rule of Emperor Franz
Joseph)
o A lot of chaos and tragedy within the royal family
Empress Elizabeth suffered from a variety of mental disorders and was
assassinated in 1898 while visiting Geneva
Prince Rudolf, the only son of Franz Joseph and Elizabeth, had his own
demons which led to suicide in 1889 after he murdered his mistress
Archduke
Viennese writers of the time are picking up on the trauma, reacting to the tragic lives of
the Hapsburg royalty
o They began to portray themes of life and death in their novels
o e.g. Freud’s fried, Arthur “hitzler, was one such writer
In addition, painters (such as Gustav Klimt) created scenes involving the same themes
o These thees ill assue etral iportae i Freud’s pshoaalti theor
o Sinister figures representing death
Life and death struggle
In 1897, tensions in Vienna reached a crescendo when Karl Lueger was elected mayor
running on a platform of anti-Semitism
o His administration will carry on until 1910
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