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Freud Theory of Personality, Research Paper Example

Pages: 1

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Research Paper

introduction

Sigmund Freud was responsible for the development of the psychoanalytic theory of personality.  His theory developed personality as comprising three main components i.e. i.d, the ego and superego. When these were examined from an interactive perspective it illustrated the subject of personality within the complex field of human behavior. Freud was noted as a leading Neurologist and for most of his works conducted at the University of Vienna in Austria.  He was the founder of the Psychoanalytic School of Psychology and for his theories in the unconscious mind and the defense mechanism of repression.  Frauds significant contributions relate to that of how the human mind is organized and theories around human behavioral conditions.  He theorized that individual personality development was formed by those experiences in early childhood. This lead to a number of clinical approaches to the treatment of psychopathology. (Appignanesi, 1979)

This paper will appeal to those wishing to understand a greater perspective of Freud’s Theory of Personality in the context of psychology.  The paper asks the question of whether Freud’s Theory of Personality holds modern validity or whether it merely reflected human behavioural considerations of his era. Research will examine the threads of the three components to modern day interpretation

Theory of Personality Model by Sigmund Freud Source: Nevid (2012)

Theory of Personality | The id

This is the component that the human is associated with from birth.  Freud describes this as being entirely unconscious and the driver of psychic energy this making it the prime component in the model.  This state demands that all needs, wants and desires are satisfied immediately and failure will result in behavioural conditions depicting anxiety, tension, etc. This condition will not change until the demands are met. (Nevid, 2012)

theory of personality | the ego

Freud defined the ego as developing from the id and as such making the need become acceptable to the real world. The ego is the engine that strives to satisfy the needs of the id and can operate in all three realms of : the unconscious mind, the preconscious mind or the conscious mind.  The ego helps to reduce tension by finding appropriate objects in the real world that will fulfil the needs of the id. (Nevid, 2012)

theory of personality | the superego

The last component relates to that of the superego. Essentially this is the aspect of personality that contains those values that we retain from our parents and society. This being items like moral standards, sense of right and wrong, and our ability to make judgements Freud stated that the process began in early childhood around the age of 5. Feud divided the superego into two sub components i.e. The ego ideal –  the consideration of those rules that make up good behaviour; these being rules that are accepted by parents and authorities. Freud considered that by complying with this rules you gained a feeling of pride and accomplishment.  The conscience – being the retention of those items that are scorned upon by parents and society. These are forbidden behaviours and lack of compliance might lead towards being scolded, punishment or retention of feelings of guilt. (Nevid, 2012)

CONCLUSION

The work of Freud in this Theory of Personality still retains a great deal of validity today.  Considering all of the components of id, ego and superego, these being subject to an array of competing forces, it is easy to see how conflicts can arise between the three components.  Freud states that the key to maintaining good composure of your personality is too maintain a good equitable balance over the three components. Freud described three levels of awareness in the exploration of the human mind.  The Conscious Mind :  Is that part of the mind that focuses upon what we are doing now or at a given moment in time.  It is that part of the mind that concerns itself with awareness. The Preconscious Mind :  Relates to things that we are aware about but not paying any attention to. It relates to the point of selection or whether we chose to ignore the events or pay attention to them and as such bring into the conscious mind. The Subconscious Mind :  Those aspects that are beyond the reach of the conscious mind.  This acts independently and Freud professed that much of what we do is triggered from the subconscious. Meaning that we are largely not responsible or unable to control our behaviour patterns. Current research has concluded that the subconscious mind has even greater control that in Frauds earlier suppositions.

REFERENCES

Appignanesi, R. (New York). Freud for beginners. 1979: Pantheon.

Nevid, J. (2012). Applications, Psychology: Concepts and. In J. Nevid, Psychology: Concepts and Applications (pp. 481-482). New York : Cengage Learning.

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