Sigmund Freud's Perspective On Personality Development

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Sigmund Freud 's viewpoint on personality development differed entirely from social learning theory. He was a psychoanalyst and looked for unconscious motives, which influenced the behavior of the patients, he was treating. He focused on the subconscious much larger part of the mind, a storehouse of impulses, passions and inaccessible memories that affect our feelings and actions. In ancient Indian psychology this is known as "samskaras". It is believed that some of these samskaras are connected with previous lives experiences.

Freud attempted to explore the unconscious part of the mind by a method, which is called "free association" in which a person is being asked to say whatever crosses the conscious mind no matter how ridiculous, shocking or trivial it might seem. He strongly believed that early experiences in life influences adulthood and that a child goes through psychosexual stages in which distinctive areas of the body called "erogenous zones" take on specific importance.

At the Oral Stage the ego is not yet developed and the infant derives great pleasure putting anything in the mouth and sucking on it. At this stage infants get great sensual pleasure from sucking and putting things in their mouths. Infants at this stage suck anything they can put into their mouths. If the infant were not satisfied or secure during that stage, it would later be incapable of loving other people. It would continue seeking oral pleasure and treat people as objects.

At the Anal Stage
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