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Chapter 9

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University of Toronto St. George

CHAPTER 9- DEVELOPMENTAL STAGES & TASKS Martin Luther’s Identity Crisis • Martin Luther’s experience is that of a person having an identity crisis • Catholic monk in 20s • Began roaring like a bull one day after having read a testament about Christ`s cure of a man who could not speak • Was heard yelling ``ìch bin nit`` - I am not! I am nothing; I do not know who I am! • Occurred during Luther`s period of religious doubt • Could not answer: who am i? & how do I fit into the adult world? • Worked out an ideological solution within 4 years & later translated this solution into radical public action. Continued on to becoming a very influential man • Credited with starting massive religious and cultural mvmt (Protestant Reformation) &translated the Bible into German • Erik Erikson did a psychobiological analysis of Luther’s identity formation - “Young Man Luther” • “the fit in the choir” critical event in which he felt cut off from all that once had meaning in his life • Low point of Luther’s identity struggle • Sandwiched b/w two other key events • When walking to U of Erfurt (for law) at age 18, was nearly struck by lightning in a thunderstorm and cried out for help from St. Anne & admitted his wanting to be a monk [thunderstorm affirmed commitment to Catholic Church] -prayed, and tortured himself more often than the other monks &was obsessive over scripture nuances [was too passionate &intense – thin disguise for deeper doubt and ambivalence] -Self-doubt intensified self-observation in exaggerated obedience to demands -Doubt of authority scrutiny of authoritative books -Luther’s projection of the devil onto others devil incarnate was the Catholic Pope &church estmt he rep.d -Identified the Church as the enemy; desperately sought for a new image of self • Experienced revelation in tower of Wittenberg by the sentence “The just shall live by faith”. He envisioned a new image of God more directly accessible to the common person than more distant version by the Church. -this religious insight consolidated his new identity Refer to table 9.1, page 349 for the major events in the life of Martin Luther • Erikson: identity vs. role confusion marks the key developmental task of young adulthood • Luther continued to change and develop (w. respect to who he was &how he fit into the world) • Key incidents that stirred his identity concerns also took place later in late adolescent &early adult life when many first confront the problem of identity (Erikson) Erikson’s concept of identity a characteristic developmental adaptation; an aspect of personality that involves the resolution of important life tasks during a particular stage of dvmt (^cannot be understood outside a developmental context) • Level of individuality: high conscientiousness & neuroticism • Level of dispositional traits: hard-working, strong-willed, stubborn, obsessive, open-minded &authoritarian • Level of motives: high achievement motivation (adolescence)higher power system (early adulthood) • Social-cognitive adaptations: simple construct system (God vs. Devil) • Explanatory style: external, stable, &global forces • 2 most integrative &influential theories of dvmt found in personality: a.) Erikson’s Psychosocial dvmt *emotional &social+, 8 stages of life, birth-death • Each stage sets an agenda for psych individuality by specifying the central psychosocial concerns an individual faces during that period • *early-adult stage of identity, intimacy, & generativity-old age}bulk of h. lifespan • Ways in which ppl meet these^ challenges are most interesting & socially significant b.) Jane Loevinger’s Dvmt of the Ego *cognition & knowing]. •Loevinger: Ego is a person’s characteristic manner of making sense of experience • How ppl make sense of themselves and the world they live in • Infancy- adulthood ERIK ERIKSON’S THEORY OF PSYCHOSOCIAL DVMT • Erikson was a blond Jew; he didn’t fit in anywhere& was not accepted by his peers --outsider •Never earned a degree; wandered Europe as an artist in early 20s •Accepted a teaching position in a small school in Vienna for the children of Freud’s patients &friends; eventually undertook training in psychoanalysis •Moved to Boston (as a psychoanalyst for children); became an American citizen & changed his last name to Erikson maturation of his own identity (highly symbolic event*). DEVELOPMENTAL STAGES IN CHILDHOOD •Strongest intellectual influence = Sigmund Freud •Freud: ultimate forces behind human behaviour & experience are unconscious sexual & aggressive drives. Libido: energy derived from sexual drives (5 stages for dvmt of libido) Erogenous zone: particular zone of the body wherein the libido expresses itself •Erikson wanted to take Freud’s psychosexual stages of libido & transform them into a developmental model of psychosocial tasks •First 5 stages parallel that of Freud’s •Each stage defined by polarity in which a positive feature is pitted against a negative feature psychosocial conflict • Conflict must be addressed (though not necessarily resolved) w/in the stage before moving on *Individual’s experience = a unique question at each stage, which is asked & eventually answered through the individual’s behaviour+ Refer to table 9.2 for Erikson’s 8 Stages of Life, page 351 • In the first year of life, the baby obtains nourishment & pleasure from sucking at the breast (or bottle) –reduces the tension caused by hunger –>this feels good 1.) Oral Stage: -infant is completely dependent on caregivers for the satisfaction of basic bodily needs -when tension (produced by needs) is consistently &regularly satisfied (reduced), the infant perceives the envt as predictable healthy psychosex. Dvmt -sucking at breast/bottle becomes starting point of sexual life -the extent to which an infant feels secure/basic trust is dependent on a series of interpersonal relationships in first yr -infant will experience both trust & mistrust for healthy dvmt. Associated virtue: Hope =balance of both 2.) Anal Stage: -toddler’s sensual energy is expressed around “keeping in” and “letting out” feces -successful toilet training signals a certain degree of mastery over the sexual instinct (libido under control in social schedules) -Autonomy vs. Shame & doubt [Erikson]. Virtue: Will. -Struggle to attain a certain degree of autonomy, freedom, independence & mastery of self in order to avoid humiliation, shame, & doubt -the environment must back up the child in his/her wish "to stand on his/her own feet" unless s/he feels as though s/he has exposed themself prematurely (--> shame/doubt) -overlapping themes are independence, self-mastery, self-control, and the avoidance of humiliation 3.) Phallic Stage: - children fascinated with own sex organs -overtly curious about sexual practices among adults -unconscious wishes regarding sexuality and aggression aimed at parents (Oedipus & Electra complexes) -Erikson’s third stage questions of power. Initiative vs. Guilt. Virtue: Purpose -Basic psychosocial issue for the preschool boy or girl 1-children are beginning to take initiative in their daily lives 2-experience guilt when their aggressive attempts to make the world their own hurts others --2Major sex differences in this stage: a. Boys- intrusive mode of operation (more aggressive behaviours) b. Girls- inclusive mode of operation (teasing, demanding, grasping) - Wanted to make the world their own and be King or Queen of this world 4.) Latency Period: -libido rarely expressed in an obvious manner -children channel instinctual energy into play, schoolwork, and peer relations *elementary school period was when children internalized values and norms* - Industry vs. Inferiority. Central question: How can I be good? Virtue: competence. - Schooling begins at this time - Intended to provide young girl/boy with tools and roles of adulthood -tools: bows, arrows, knowledge of computers -roles: teacher, parent, hunter, priest, and healer -Are now expected to learn these^ tools & roles in a systematic &socially scripted way • Is now learning how to be a god worker, citizen & member of society • Learning applies to matters that are material &moral, economic &ethical THE PROBLEM OF IDENTITY • Emerging adulthood (period in life b/w late adolescence & young adulthood). It is at this time that one addresses the question “who am i?” -The past partly determines the future, but reverse is also true •young adult looks back on childhood and realizes what childhood meant: a. cannot change the past, but can change the meaning b. this meaning becomes another part of making of identity • Erikson’s Young Man Luther • “The adult is able to selectively reconstruct his past in a way that step-by-step; he seems to have planned it. In this sense, we do psychologically choose our parents, family history, history of our kings, heroes & gods. By making them our own, we manoeuvre ourselves into the inner position of proprietors, of creators.” Adolescence & Young Adulthood 5.) Genital stage: Freud said puberty marks beginning of libido’s last stage -an ending & a transformation •Erikson: end of childhood –closing of chapters of trust, autonomy, initiative, &industry - Identity vs. Role Confusion. Virtue: Fidelity. How do i fit into the adult world? -why confront identity issue first in adolescence? 3 categories that answer this: a. body (find ourselves in new adult-like bodies—very different from what we have known, but not quite sure what we are now) b. cognition (this is when we begin to be able to think of ourselves and the world in highly abstract terms. Jean piaget said this is the time when ppl develop formal operations: one is able to reason what is and what might be in terms of verbally stated and logically deduced hypotheses. - a 10 yr old is a slave to concrete facts: reality is everything. - “Who am i? How do I fit into the world?” –are catalyzed by the cognitive emergence of formal operations -adolescents begin seriously thinking about the possibilities of alternative lives and systems of living (in some cases) thus motivating them to explore new and previously unthinkable ways of experiencing the world -adolescent observes own behaviour and questions if there is a basic link among the different & conflicting ways in which s/he approaches the world.“Is there a real me behind all the roles I play?” - such a problem does not occur in the mind of a 10 yr old. “Wholeness is, thus, an ideal conceived in late adolescence; a goal which may be pursued thereafter.” c. society (shifts in society`s expectations about how the individual should be doing, thinking, and feeling). -expectations include: examining occupational, ideological, and interpersonal opportunities around them & to begin making decisions about what their lives as adults are about to be -this period is viewed as a psychosocial delay in which the individual can find a niche in society through free role experimentation - Tension b/w niche carved out by society and the individuals desire to carve out his or her own niche - Should not conform to society/family’s expectations rather, where the individual feels most comfortable—even if it means creating a niche beyond the one expected to fulfill - Relationship b/w the self and society in dvmt (development) of healthy identity=dynamic tension - “The individual and society create identity together” –Erikson Identity Statuses • Formation of identity involves 2 steps: 1. Young person breaks from childhood beliefs & views, questions assumptions about the self and the world, &begins investigating alternatives -exploration -one challenges many viewpoints they confront -questions past -moving from what is to what might have been & what might be 2. Young person makes commitments to various roles & outlooks that define how the person sees him/herself fitting into adult world -questions & doubts of exploration phase are resolved -identity is no longer a concern • Marcia et al. developed a semistructured interview to ask questions about exploration and commitment –applying to occupation & ideology •4 identity statuses (identity achievement, moratorium, foreclosure, identity diffusion) -over time, ppl move from one status to another (as identity is renegotiated &reworked) -issue: identity vs. role confusion -Identity status: Marcia’s concept referring to the extent to which a young person has explored and made commitments to different identity options, especially in the realms of occupation and ideology. i.) identity achievement: Erikson: most dvmtally advanced. Referring to the person who has explored various identity options and successfully made commitments to realistic identity goals. th th -have successfully met Erikson’s 5 stage &are ready for the 6 -strive for internalized goals and rely on own skills in meeting daily challenges -may perceive parents in balanced though somewhat ambivalent terms -are more academically inclined than those in other statuses -make decisions (especially moral ones) in an autonomous &principled manner ii.) Moratorium (identified by Marcia): Referring to the person who is currently exploring various identity options but has not yet made commitments. -these ppl are aware of the fact that they don’t know who they are. E.g. Luther -are seen as relatively “mature” in Marcia’s scheme -both identity achievers & moratiums create richer and more individuated conceptions of themselves -they both also use more mature defense mechanisms & tend adopt a more engaged and exploratory style in processing info about the world -ambivalence- relationship b/w individual and parents. Greater psychological distance =setting up rents/authority figures as negative identities (everything the young person does not want to be) …rents. “enemy”- Erikson term. -described as extremely friendly, likable, sensitive, &insightful but have relatively high levels of general anxiety iii.) Foreclosure: Referring to the person who has not explored identity options but has rather made commitments to identity goals and outcomes that arose from childhood and remained unquestioned. -person has failed to meet identity challenge -fails to explore, but makes commitments to unquestioned positions set by parents -opts for security of childhood roles, beliefs, &expectations -very close to parents (especially sons to fathers) -“best behaved” of all statuses -describe home as loving and affectionate -adopt an authoritarian outlook- traits/attitudes centered on submission to and reverence for strong authority, conventional societal values, and strict standards of right/wrong. -score low on autonomy and anxiety; show unrealistically high levels of aspiration iv.) Identity diffusion: referring to the person who has not yet explored identity options and who has not made commitments. Most perplexing. -are afloat among ambiguity (few ties to past, few commitments to the future) -best characterized by the word “withdrawal” -tend to feel out of place -saw parents as distant and misunderstanding; approach new relationships with extreme caution -fantasy & withdrawal = coping strategies for women in this status [Josselson] Josselson – longitudinal study: categorized 30 women into Marcia’s identity statuses as college seniors -evidence found for both continuity and change in identity (college-midlife). i.) pathmakers: had a sense of conviction & meaningfulness of their lives &choices; self-doubt was present but not disabling (were identity achievers in college) ii.) searchers: experienced more self-doubt & self-criticism than pathmakers; more vivid emotions & stronger spirituality; did eventually “find themselves” with same success as pathmakers (moratorium in college). iii.) guardians: more rigid and moralistic than the others; used their firm beliefs as a foundation on which to build new and interesting self-concepts; find inner aspects they had buried (foreclosures in college). iv.) drifters: life paths = checkered & complex; had most regrets; were actively exploring &revising their lives in their 30s & 40s (identity diffuse in college) Central theme: Growing into greater consciousness & control --Idethity & Intimacy th 5.) 5 Psychosocial stage- Intimacy vs. Isolation *Erikson’s 6 psychosocial stage]. Virtue: Love. Young adulthood. - Relationship = very complex -Many ppl define themselves through intimate relationships with others - Sequence for stages may be reversed (may be confronted with intimacy issues before identity issues) - Estmt. of adult self and dvmt of intimate relationships sometimes difficult to separate from each other -“a person may be unable to be truly intimate with others until he or she has first made considerable progress in addressing the identity issue” – Erikson - Following Marcia’s concept of Identity status, Orlofsky et al. Developed the parallel idea of intimacy status (a recurrent preference or desire for experiences of warm, close and communicative interaction with others. Individual differences in intimacy motivation may be assessed thru the PSE). These researchers created a semistructured interview designed to determine the quality of intimacy in a person’s life based on answers to questions about dating, friendships, and interpersonal commitments (intimate, preintimate, stereotyped relationships, and isolate) -found that male college students with relatively mature identity statuses of identity achievement and moratorium exhibited more mature intimacy statuses (intimate and preintimate). -Tesch and Whitbourne examined relation b/w identity & intimacy (48 men, 44 women mid20s)Standard identity-status and intimacy-status interviews -added a fifth intimacy status merger – one partner dominated the other found that those who had succe
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