Lecture 4 - The Crisis of Meaning

Lecture 4 - The Crisis of Meaning - The Crisis of Meaning:...

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The Crisis of Meaning: Sigmund Freud I) Introduction: Freud and the Divided Self: crucial thinker. Deeply explored the human psyche. Defined this terrain as the unconscious. He tried to figure out how to map that territory-sought to understand that unconscious so as better to control it. Was not going to give up the rational side of human nature. Was a paradoxical thinker. Was a divided self: torn between rational and irrational. Surrealists in particular are indebted to Freud. A lot of their paintings are to explore the unconscious part of the personality. Ideal condition: community of men who had subordinated their in ticket wall life to the dictatorship of reason. II) The Impact of WWI: From Psychologist to Sociologist-used data that he gathered from his patients to apply later in his life to society at large. Many factors contributed from his move from psychology to sociology. One of turning points: WWI. Plays pivotal role. The ideas in his mind are confirmed by the war itself. He thought his own ideas and new science was going to be helpful in explaining that paradox. Primitive evil impulses of mankind have not vanished in any individual but continue to exist in a repressed state. Psychoanalysis has been right in both its assertions. The war convinced him that he was on to something. Shift from the study of individuals to the study of society as a whole. War exposes this paradox in western civilization. A) Letter to Einstein (Reader, p.29) III) The Origins of Freud’s Ideas: From Neurologist to Psychologist-studies mental illness that don’t have a physiological basis. Learns that under hypnosis patients reveal traumatic stories that they cant access when they aren’t under hypnosis. Has a cathartic effect that relieves their illness. Uses techniques such as free association: lie on couch, let
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This note was uploaded on 01/03/2011 for the course MMW 6 taught by Professor Chang during the Spring '08 term at UCSD.

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Lecture 4 - The Crisis of Meaning - The Crisis of Meaning:...

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