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Chapter 5 theories of Personality

Chapter 5 theories of Personality - C hapter 5 Ka ren Ho...

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Chapter 5 Karen Horney Corbis/Bettmann Chapter Outline Biographical Sketch Basic Evil, Hostility, and Anxiety Adjustments to Basic Anxiety Moving Toward, Against, or Away from People Real and Idealized Self Externalization Auxiliary Approaches to Artificial Harmony Feminine Psychology Psychotherapy Goal of Psychotherapy Self-Analysis Comparison of Horney and Freud Evaluation Summary Experiential Exercises Discussion Questions Karen Horney was trained in the Freudian tradition, and all her work was influenced by that training. In fact, while at the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute, she was psychoanalyzed by Karl Abraham and Hans Sachs, two of the most prominent Freudian analysts at that time. Early in her career, Horney even defended Freudian theory against attacks from such critics as Adler and Jung (Quinn, 1988, p. 151). As time went on, however, Horney found it more and more difficult to apply Freudian notions to her work. She completely disagreed with Freud’s notions of the Oedipus complex and his division of the mind into the id, ego, and superego. She thought Freud’s theory reflected a different country and a different time. To state it simply, Horney found that Freud’s theory did not fit the problems people were having during the Great Depression in the United States. Sexual problems were secondary to several other problems that those special environmental conditions had created. Instead of sexual problems, people were worried about losing their jobs and not having enough money to pay the rent, buy food, or provide their children with needed medical care. Horney reasoned that because such major differences exist in the types of problems that people experience from one country to another or from one time in history to another, they must be culturally rather than biologically determined, as Freud had assumed. So, although Horney was trained in the Freudian tradition and deeply influenced by that training, her theory ended up being quite different than Freud’s. To Horney, what a person experiences socially determines whether or not he or she will have psychological problems and, if so, what type they will be. The conflict is caused by environmental conditions, not by opposing components of Chapter 5 1
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the mind (id, ego, and superego) as Freud had believed. As we shall see, Horney did not abandon Freud’s theory completely but her viewpoint is much more compatible with Adler’s than with Freud’s. 126 Biographical Sketch Karen Horney (pronounced “Horn-eye”) was born Karen Danielson in a small village near Hamburg, Germany, on September 15, 1885 (the year Freud was studying hypnotism with Jean Charcot in Paris). Her father, Berndt Henrik Wackles Danielson, was a Norwegian sea captain, and her mother, Clotilde Marie van Ronzelen, was a member of a prominent Dutch- German family. Horney’s mother was 18 years younger than the captain and was his second wife. The family consisted of four children from the captain’s previous marriage as well as Horney’s older biological brother, Berndt, who was considered the darling of the family.
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