Brücke was a physiologist from the strictly physicalist school that had first arisen with Freud's father's generation. Brücke and others argued that special "vital" forces were not necessary to explain life; rather, all biological phenomena could be explained by reference to basic physical laws, even if–as was certainly the case in Brücke's and Freud's time–the connection to those laws was not apparent. As a physiologist, Brücke was concerned with the function of particular cells and organs, not just with their structure. Brücke's work thus focused on the attempt to discover basic physical laws that governed the processes that took place in living systems.When Freud formulated his theories of psychoanalysis in the 1890s, he abandoned the physicalism of Brücke's position, but retained the search for universal laws and the emphasis on processes, or dynamics. ("Psychodynamic psychology" is a modern term
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