Maslow: Holistic-Dynamic Theory
After reading Chapter 10, you should be able to:
List and explain Maslow's five assumptions regarding motivation.
List and explain the five needs in Maslow's hierarchy of needs.
Distinguish between conative, aesthetic, cognitive, and neurotic needs.
Define instinctoid needs.
Describe Maslow's criteria for identifying self-actualizers.
List and describe the characteristics of self-actualizing people.
Describe the Jonah complex.
Discuss Maslow's philosophy of science.
Discuss Maslow's concept of humanity.
Explain the implications of Maslow's theory for psychotherapy.
Summarize research on self-actualization.
Overview of Maslow's Holistic-Dynamic Theory
Maslow's holistic-dynamic theory assumes that people are continually motivated by one or more needs, and that under the proper circumstances, they can reach a level of psychological health called self-actualization. II.
Biography of Abraham H. Maslow
Abraham H. Maslow was born in New York City in 1908, the oldest of seven children of Russian Jewish immigrants. After 2 or 3 mediocre years as a college student, Maslow improved in his academic work at about the time he was married. He received both a bachelor's degree and a PhD from the University of Wisconsin, where he worked with Harry Harlow conducting animal studies. Most of his professional career was spent at Brooklyn College and Brandeis University. Poor health forced him to move to California, where he died in 1970 at age 62. III.
Maslow's View of Motivation
Maslow's theory rests on five basic assumptions about motivation: (1) the whole organism is motivated at any one time; (2) motivation is complex, and unconscious motives often underlie behavior; (3) people are continually motivated by one need or another; (4) people in different cultures are motivated by the same basic needs; and (5) the basic needs can be arranged on a hierarchy.
Hierarchy of Needs
Maslow held that lower level needs have prepotency over higher level needs; that is, lower needs must be satisfied before higher needs become motivators. Maslow's hierarchy includes: (1) physiological needs, such as oxygen, food, water, and so on; (2) safety needs, which include physical security, stability, dependency, protection, and freedom from danger, and which result in basic anxiety if not satisfied; (3) love and belongingness needs, including the desire for friendship, the wish for a mate and children, and the need to belong; (4) esteem needs, which result from the satisfaction of love needs and which include self-confidence and the recognition that we have a positive reputation; and (5) self-actualization needs, which are satisfied only by the psychologically healthiest people. Unlike other needs that automatically are activated when lower needs are met, self-actualization needs do not inevitably follow from the satisfaction of esteem needs. Only by embracing such B-values as truth, beauty, oneness, justice, etc., can people achieve self-actualization. The five needs on Maslow's hierarchy are conative needs. Other categories of needs include aesthetic needs, cognitive needs, and neurotic needs.
Aesthetic needs include a desire for beauty and order, and some people have much stronger aesthetic needs than do others. When people fail to meet their aesthetic needs, they become sick.
Cognitive needs include the desire to know, to understand, and to be curious. Knowledge is a prerequisite for each of the five conative needs. Also, people who are denied knowledge and kept in ignorance become sick, paranoid, and depressed.
Neurotic needs include a desire to dominate, to inflict pain, or to subject oneself to the will of another person. With conative, aesthetic, and cognitive needs, some type of illness results when they are...
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