Chapter 15 - Chapter 15 Personality The Psychoanalytic...

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Chapter 15: Personality The Psychoanalytic Perspective Exploring the Unconscious Sigmund Freud’s treatment of emotional disorders led him to believe that they sprang from unconscious  dynamics, which he sought to analyze through free associations and dreams. Freud saw personality as  composed of pleasure-seeking psychic impulses (the id), a reality-oriented executive (the ego), and an  internalized set of ideals (the superego). Freud believed that children develop through psychosexual stages—the oral, anal, phallic, latency, and  genital stages. He suggested that our personalities are influenced by how we have resolved conflicts  associated with these stages and whether we have remained fixated at any stage. Tensions between demands of the id and superego cause anxiety. The ego copes by using defense  mechanisms, of which repression is the most basic. The Neo-Freudian and Psychodynamic Theorists Neo-Freudians Alfred Adler and Karen Horney accepted many of Freud’s ideas, as did Carl Jung. But they  also argued that we have motives other than sex and aggression, and that the ego’s conscious control is  greater than Freud supposed. Assessing Unconscious Processes Projective tests are tests that attempt to assess personality by presenting ambiguous stimuli that are  designed to reveal the unconscious. Although projective tests, such as the Rorschach inkblots, have  questionable reliability or validity, some clinicians continue to use them. Evaluating the Psychoanalytic Perspective Today’s   research   psychologists   find   some   of   Freud’s   specific   ideas   implausible,   unvalidated,   or  contradicted by new research, and they note that his theory offers only after-the-fact explanations. Many  researchers now believe that repression rarely, if ever, occurs. Nevertheless, Freud drew psychology’s 
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