Theories of Personality (PSY 225-A01)/Chapter 4

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This chapter will be focusing on the neo analytic & ego aspects of personality.

  • Role of the Ego - broader than Freud's ego (didn't give the ego independence or control over the individual): [more modern approaches: egoaspects] give ego more independence, focus more on its role & sense of self.
  • Role of Social Interactions - In family/society, how this plays a role in forming a personality?
  • Role of Unconsciousness - Neonalaytic uses psychoanalytic as foundation.

Psychologists[edit | edit source]

Carl Jung[edit | edit source]

Carl Jung was a Swiss pscyhiatrist who is the founder of analytical psychology. For this lesson, we will review his 3 concepts of the mind.

Concepts of the Mind (Jung)[edit | edit source]

  • Conscious Ego - Sense of who we are and we are concious of it
  • Personal unconscious - two types: (1) irrelevant information/memories (2) repressed/threatening memories. This can be differientated from the...
  • Collective unconscious - deep level of unconscious (made up of architypes: shared, emotional symbols and shared down throughout history). An example of this is the "mother architype", the idea is that the mother represents fertility, nurturing. The "persona architype" is like a "social mask". These themes are common in all cultures and handed down. Question: Are these inherited from our ancestors or whether they are so common in human experiences--that they are represented in all societies?

Complexes[edit | edit source]

A group of emotionally charged ideas related to common themes. They are kind of like "broken pieces" of our unconscious. Trauma took place, we break off emotions that go together and compmertalize them into a complex. A "guilty complex": someone who accidentally allowed her young daughter to die from an infection. She also was 'love' depressed and married to someone else. She is guilty because she was neglectful in protecting her daughter. Her depression would become worse as a result of this.

He would test this through a "word-association test".

He also was known for "functions and attitudes". This is where the MBTI test is from (4 main categories/16 different types). These categories are dichotomous, but today, we measure on a continous scale (spectrum, ex.) vs. types.

Jung broke off from Freud's main way of thinking, allowing other thinking processes to grow & he had a 'mystical spiritual' perspective.

Alfred Adler[edit | edit source]

Adler came up with individual psychology. He coined the term "inferiority complex" as he focused on superiority vs. inferiority.

Superiority vs. Inferiority[edit | edit source]

The idea is that we are born helpless, so we are "inferior". We respond to this by [normally] striving for superiority. We want to get control in our life. If something goes wrong [bullied, ex.], we maintain the sense of "inferioirity" --> inferiority complex. This would be partially unconscious ( want to be superior all the time = unconsciously feeding the desire of being superior).

When someone lashes out in anger over "percieved" helplessness, this is aggression drive.

If a young child insists on doing something by herself that she has not mastered, Alfred would call this the masculine protest.

"Perfection striving" is people trying to meet their fictional goals.

Birth Order[edit | edit source]

He suggested that the first child is favored until the second child is born - therefore the 1st is more independent (more likely to be a scientist). The second child is in competition and may [not] surpass their first child, therefore lowering/increasing their self-esteem (revolutionary/creative).

Later born children face multiple competition. Likely increases failure to surpass the earlier children --> may be lazy (revolutionary/creative). Recent evidence supports some of this.

Adler's Typology[edit | edit source]

Not a lot of support - but he included personality types (dichotomous types). Based on ancient Greek thinking that bodly fluids would lead to certain types (melancholy, ex.). He added social interest (low, ex.) and activity component (low, ex.).

Karen Horney[edit | edit source]

Womb envy vs. penis envy - It's not the penis that women care about, but its the benefit of the males in society. Males are actually envious of women's ability to get pregnant and be the main contributor to the next generation--men compensated for this by oppressing women in the workplace.

Basic Anxiety[edit | edit source]

The helpless state of children --> fear of being alone --> basic anxiety. May be worse if family dysfunction.

Coping Strategies[edit | edit source]

  1. Moving towards (passive, seek affection/approval, may seek out a dominating partner, co-dependency)
  2. Moving against (aggressive, striving for dominance/recognition/superiority)
  3. Moving away (withdrawing, not engaging, feeling unworthy)

The best way to deal with basic anxiety would be to use all of these types in moderation

The Self[edit | edit source]

  • Real self - Intercore, perceptions of ourselves (self-image), affected by parents
  • Despised self - Feelings of helplessness, negative thoughts of others (person who copes and "moves away", not emotionally engaging)
  • Ideal self - Perception of perfection and shaped by our regrets/shortcomings (I should've...)
  • Healthy self - Acceptance of the 'real self', not the "ideal self". Accept our shortcomings. This is the goal.

She agreed with unconscious motives from childhood. She added the importance of supportive family. Contributed to rejection of female inferiority. "Shoulds" would lead to internal conflict/self-hatred.

Anna Freud and Heinz Hartmann[edit | edit source]

Anna Freud worked directly with children (psychotherapy), as opposed to her father. Freud & Hartmann contributed to the concept of the "ego" (gave more independence) - ego was helpful for the individual's functioning & propel the user forward vs. conflict-resolver.

Objects Relation Theory[edit | edit source]

Focuses on our relationships with others. It defines our personality (object = significant other). Margaret Maller focused on...

  • Symbiosis - Mutually beneficial relationship. Three types: symbiotic psychosis [ties are so strong that the individual doesn't develop a sense of "self" (babies) | amashment = no differentiation ], lack of ties [dysfunctional relationship], normal symbiotic [healthy ties & good sense of self].

Melany Kline & Klines Cohat associated with relational perspective (extentions of object relations theory) - role of early interactions (early interactions lead to future relationships). Learning about love & understanding another's perspective. Can't identify self without social context/social identity. Good motherhood is supreme (boys need to replace their initial identification with the mother, and girls do not.).

Erik Erikson[edit | edit source]

Erikson was a neofreudian. Has a lifetime perspective: A complex needs to be resolved in each stage. He believed important conflict resolutions took place throughout life + psychosocial stage instead of psychosexual stage. See here for more. The outcome of the successful resolution of each stage (E), rather than the results of its failure (F), is central to one of the theories and not the other.

Modern Approaches[edit | edit source]

  • Is identity personal or external? (how do I see myself vs. how others see me)
  • Collective identity: Extent to which our group membership plays into our personality (religion, sports team, family)
  • Relational identity: Role that relationship plays in our identity (connected to relationships within the group membership [individuals in a family])
  • Self monitoring: How we present ourselves? Extent to which a person presents themselves with social expectations [dispositional orientation (low self-monitoring: focusing on their own disposition) vs. situational orientation (high self-monitoring: person monitors themselves differently in accordance with the situation (sensitivity to behaving in a manner that is socially appropriate to the context)] | not "either or".

Roles of Goals & Life Tasks[edit | edit source]

  • Personal projcts: Address the specific goals of an individual (Losing 20lb)
  • Personal striving: More abstract goals (I want to be healthy)
  • Life tasks: Age-related, related to the concept of having goals. Focus on the stage of life the individual is in.
  • Fulfilling one's social needs (do I seek a lot of friends? vs. do I seek really good friends?). Goals and the method towards the goals shape the person's identity.

Possible Selves[edit | edit source]

How we imagine ourselves play a role in personality. A more cognitive approach than Horney.

Actual self, ideal self, ought self, discrepancies can cause conflict.