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Chapter 13

PSY100 Chapter 13.docx

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University of Toronto St. George
Dan Dolderman

Chapter 13Personality INTRODUCTIONPersonality consists of the characteristic thoughts emotional responses and behaviours that are relatively stable in an individual over time and across circumstances o The dynamic organization within the individual of those psychophysical systems that determine his characteristic behaviour and thought o Dynamic in that it is goal seeking sensitive to context and adaptive to environment PSYCHODYNAMIC THEORIES EMPHASIZE UNCONSCIOUS AND DYNAMIC PROCESSESPsychodynamic theory of personality is that unconscious forces influence behaviour such as wishes and motives o Referred to these psychic forces as instincts defining them as mental representations arising out of biological or physical need o Example people satisfy the life instinct by following the pleasure principle which directs people to seek pleasure and to avoid pain A TOPOGRAPHICAL MODEL OF MINDFreud believed that most of the conflict between psychological forces occur below the level of conscious awareness o Topographical model he proposed that the structure of the mind or its topography is divided into three zones of mental awarenessAt the conscious level people are aware of their thoughtsThe preconscious level consists of content that is not currently in awareness but that could be brought to awareness it is roughly analogous to longterm memoryThe unconscious level contains material that the mind cannot easily retrieve o Unconscious level contains wishes desires and motives and they are associated with conflict anxiety or pain to protect the person from distress they are not accessibleSometimes this information leaks into consciousness such as occurs during a Freudian slip in which a person accidentally reveals a hidden motive DEVELOPMENT OF SEXUAL INSTINCTSEarly childhood experiences have a major impact on the development of personality o At each psychosexual stage libido is focused on one of the erogenous zones the mouth the anus or the genitalsThe oral stage lasts from birth to 18 months during which time pleasure is sought through the mouth hungry infants experience relief when they breastfeed and thus associate pleasure with suckingAnal phase toilet training leads them to focus on the anus learning to control the bowels is the focusPhallic stage and direct their libidinal energies toward the genitals o Oedipus complex the samesex parent is considered a rival children develop hostility toward the parent in order to claim the other parent and resolve this conflict through identification with the samesex parent taking on many of that parents values and beliefs o Children enter a brief latency stage in which libidinal urges are suppressed or channeled into doing schoolwork or building friendships o Genital stage adolescents and adults attain mature attitudes about sexuality and adulthood centred on the capacity to reproduce and contribute to society STRUCTURAL MODEL OF PERSONALITYFreud proposed an integrated model of how the mind is organized consisting of three theoretical structures that vary in degree of consciousness o At the most basic level and completely submerged in the unconscious is the id which operates according to the pleasure principle acting on impulses and desiresThe innate forces driving the id are sex and aggression o Acting as a brake on the id is the superego the internalization of parental and societal standards of conductDeveloped during the phallic phase the superego is a rigid structure of morality or conscience o Mediating between the superego and id is the ego which tries to satisfy the wishes of the id while being responsive to the dictates of the superegoEgo operates according to the reality principle which involves rational thought and problem solving o Conflict between the id and superego lead to anxiety which the ego copes with through various defence mechanisms unconscious mental strategies that the mind uses to protect itself from distressPeople often rationalize their behaviour by blaming situational factors over which they have little controlReaction formation occurs when a person wards off an uncomfortable thought about the self by embracing the opposite thoughtMany neoFreudians rejected Freuds emphasis on sexual forces and instead focused on social interactions especially childrens emotional attachments to their parents o This focus is embodied in object relations theory in which the object of attachment is another person such as parent or spouse HUMANISTIC APPROACHES EMPHASIZE INTEGRATED PERSONAL EXPERIENCE
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