EVALUATING THE PSYCHOANALYTIC PERSPECTIVE
Hello my part will be about evaluating the psychoanalytic perspective, with an objective to summarize psychology’s current assessment of Freud’s theory of psychoanalysis. First, I need to say that people often critique Freud from an early 21st century perspective, a perspective that itself needs revising. Freud didn’t have access to neurotransmitter or DNA studies, or to all that we have learned about human development, thinking, and emotion. Therefore, to criticize his theories by comparing them with current concept, some say, is like comparing Henry Ford’s Model T with today’s Mustang. However, Freud’s admirers and his critics agree that recent research contradicts many of his ideas. Today’s developmental psychologists see our development as life – long, not fixed in childhood. They doubt that infants’ neural networks are mature enough to sustain as much emotional trauma as Freud assumed. Some think Freud overestimated parental influence and underestimated peer influence. New ideas about why we dream dispute Freud’s belief that dreams disguise and fulfill wishes. Researchers find little support for Freud’s idea that defense mechanisms disguise sexual and aggressive impulses. History also failed to support another of Freud’s ideas – that suppressed sexuality causes psychological disorders. From Freud’s time to ours, sexual inhibition has diminished and psychological disorders have not.
Freud’s entire psychoanalytic theory rests on his assumption that the human mind often represses painful experiences, banishing them into the unconscious until with the help of a guide, we somehow uncover them, finding them intact. Under Freud’s influence, repression becomes a widely accepted concept, used to explain hypnotic phenomena, psychological disorders and lost and recovered memories of childhood traumas. (contact) Actually, contend many of today’s researchers, repression, if it ever occurs, is a rare mental response to...
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