Theory Critique

The complicated theories developed by Sigmund Freud became highly controversial especially in the era they were presented due to the fact that it involved psychosexual issues considered taboo at the time. Still, because it attracted much interest and debate, it gained a prestigious distinction in the field of Psychology to merit a great deal of influence, intensive study, modification, and application.His idea of the three systems of personality, the id, ego, and superego being in constant battle within a person makes sense to me, as I liken it to a person’s continual debate of what is right and wrong, and then behaves according to his moral decisions. Such decisions are affected by what society dictates as well as what the person truly desires for himself.Although the Freudian view of psychosexual stages of development coincides with other contemporary theories on human growth and development, I find it too degrading. It demeans a person’s capacity to make sound judgments because he is viewed as enslaved by his biological fixations and primal needs. It is as if it implies that a person is imprisoned by his past experiences and that his horrible past determines his woeful future.To survive to live with negative experiences that may have marred a person’s personality or life views, he develops defense mechanisms that aim to keep those traumatic experiences repressed in the unconscious. These defense mechanisms are usually practiced by everyone in their daily life not knowing that they are applications of Freudian thought. An example of a defense mechanism commonly used is ‘rationalization’. If a person has strived hard to reach a goal like applying for a certain job position and does not get it, he would rationalize to his family that he was not so interested in it after all. It is much like the fabled fox sour-grasping.

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