Unformatted text preview: Sigmund Freud Sigmund Freud (18561939) Civilization and its Discontents (1930) Civilization and its Discontents
Civilization and its Discontents
A good part of the struggles of mankind center around the single task of finding an expedient accommodation – one, that is, that will bring happiness – between [claims of individual liberty] and the cultural claims of the group; and one of the problems that touches the fate of humanity is whether such an accommodation can be reached by means of some particular form of civilization or whether this conflict is irreconcilable (50). Sigmund Freud
Sigmund Freud Born 1856 in what is now Czech Republic
Medical school in Vienna First law of thermodynamics Paris with Charcot Hypnosis The unconscious Development of psychoanalysis 19001920s
Fled Nazis: to London 1938, died 1939 Overview
Overview Sigmund Freud (18561939) Freud’s theory: a general overview The unconscious
Id, ego, superego
Sexuality and aggression Civilization and its Discontents (1930) What is civilization?
What are its discontents? Freud’s theory of the psyche
Freud’s theory of the psyche The id chaos, a cauldron full of seething excitations...filled with energy reaching it from the instincts, but it has no organization, produces no collective will, but only a striving to bring about the satisfaction of the instinctual needs subject to the observance of the pleasure principle. The ego (reality principle)
The superego (source of the conscience) “like a garrison in a conquered city” (84) Civilization and its Discontents (p. 77)
Civilization and its Discontents
Sexuality and aggression Besides the instinct to preserve living substance and to join it in ever larger units, there must exist another, contrary instinct seeking to dissolve those units and to bring them back to their primeval, inorganic state. Civilization and its Discontents (pp.79, 81)
Civilization and its Discontents Sexuality and aggression
I can no longer understand how we can have overlooked the ubiquity of nonerotic aggressivity and destructiveness and can have failed to give it its due place in our interpretation of life.
The inclination to aggression is an original, self
subsisting instinctual disposition in man…
that… constitutes the greatest impediment to civilization. Civilization and its Discontents
Civilization and its Discontents What is civilization? The whole sum of our achievements and the regulations which distinguish our lives from those of our animal ancestors and which serve two purposes – namely to protect men against nature and to adjust their mutual relations (42) What is civilization?
What is civilization?
Elements of civilization Mastery of nature Cleanliness, beauty, and order The organization of human relationships
the replacement of the power of the individual by the power of a community constitutes the decisive step of civilization (49) Civilization and its Discontents
Civilization and its Discontents What are its discontents? Ties of family vs. ties of community The renunciation of instinctual satisfaction “acceptable” forms of sexual gratification “Love your neighbor” Civilization and its Discontents Civilization and its Discontents (p. 69)
Men are not gentle creatures who want to be loved, and who at the most can defend themselves if they are attacked; they are, on the contrary, creatures among whose instinctual endowments is to be reckoned a powerful share of aggressiveness…. …As a result, their neighbor is for them not only a potential helper or sexual object, but also someone who tempts them to satisfy their aggressiveness on him, to exploit his capacity for work without compensation, to seize his possessions, to humiliate him, to cause him pain, to torture and to kill him…. …Homo homini lupus. (69) READINGS FOR P.S. 101
READINGS FOR P.S. 101
THE ESSENTIAL FEDERALIST AND ANTIFEDERALIST PAPERS, ED. WOOTTON (page numbers in parentheses) Antifederalists Speech of Patrick Henry (2541)
Cato 4, 5 (5865)
Brutus 6, 11 (7486) Federalist Papers 1 (140143)
85 (310316) ...
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- Fall '11
- Sigmund Freud Sigmund Freud