Critique on Gordon Allport (Theories of Personality)

Topics: Psychology, Personality psychology, Scientific method, Clinical psychology, Sigmund Freud, Gordon Allport / Pages: 11 (2590 words) / Published: Nov 13th, 2012
Gordon Allport- theory review


Boitumelo Chantelle Mangope

Gordon Allport was truly a phenomenal personality theorist who explained what a personality is and he bent most of the rules that were set out by other theorists including the father of personality himself, Sigmund Freud and in addition to that, he considered Freud’s theory of personality as the worst theory of all time.

The Life of Gordon Allport
Gordon Allport was the first American-born personality theorist and hailed from the state of Indiana, Montezuma. He was born on 11 November 1897 and died a month before his 70th birthday (9 October 1967) due to lung cancer. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts, (majoring in Economics and Philosophy), Masters of Art in 1921 and a PhD (all three at Harvard University) at the tender age of 24. After he completed his degree, he took a gap year and taught English and Sociology at a university in Istanbul, Turkey. Gordon was lucky to have encountered an experience with Sigmund Freud for when he was returning back to the U.S to start off fellowship to do graduate work in psychology at Harvard, he stopped off at Vienna to visit one of his brothers and wrote to Freud (who was situated there) a letter asking for permission to visit him. The permission was granted and he explained there encounter as an unsuccessful on. He told Freud a story of whereby he met a young boy in a tram car ride who had a dirt phobia and he frantically told his mother not to let a dirty man sit next to him. Freud then went on to insinuate that the little boy was Allport and this caused a misunderstanding between them. This event lead to Allport having to probe further into psychology and the elements of personality because he felt that depth psychology overlooked the important truths. He developed a theory that ignored the unconscious and that was not scientifically-based thus, stating that in order for one to learn about an individual, they have to be studied and not base the

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