On the Various Personalities involved in the History of Psychodynamic and Analytical Psychology, along with their proposed Theories and Principles, and their Contributions to the Practice of Therapeutic Hypnosis.
An essay by Timothy Whittard.
The following essay aims to discuss and explore six of the well-known individuals (covered in detail within the course materials) who have contributed heavily to the development of psychodynamic and analytical psychology, including their proposed theories and principles.
Freud - Psychoanalysis
This theory of psychoanalysis refers to the psychological processes which occur in the unconscious mind and the therapeutic interventions which can be used to access such subconscious thoughts (Borch-Jacobsen and Shamdasani, 2012). Frued was known to apply a technique known as ‘free association’, which was intended to bring the content of the unconscious mind to the forefront of the conscious mind so that these can be examined and understood (Breuer and Freud, 1937). He also spoke of ‘defense mechanisms’ designed to repress potentially upsetting or anxiety provoking thoughts, where they can be held in the unconscious mind without causing emotional harm (Gross, 2001). Freud (1962) focuses on the different stages of sexual development which he listed into four distinct stages; the oral stage (0-2 years), the anal stage (2-4 years), the phallic stage (4-7 years) and the genital stage (from puberty into adulthood). He proposed that symptoms mental illness were the result of unfulfilled sexual needs, which when remain unresolved can bring about disturbances in the formation of personality (Eysenck and Flanagan, 2001).
Jung - Analytical Psychology
Jung did not agree with the views of Freud and found the focus on sexuality to be limiting and exclusionary of other factors (Jung, 1968; Jung, 1977). With a more open-minded approach Jung was able to lay the foundations for ‘analytical psychology’ (Jung, 1995; Gross, 2001). He explored several areas of the emerging science of psychology, giving rise to a variety of notions and concepts, which he asserted would cause each patient to possess individuality resulting from the interactions of multiple complex factors (Jung, 1977). According to Hyde and McGuinness (2004) the therapy devised by Jung consisted of four stages; catharsis, elucidation, education and transformation. Different methods of analysis which can be applied include; dream analysis, expressive methods, active imagination and amplification. The use of such methods was done so with the aim of allowing the patient to access their unconscious whilst being able to resolve problems (Jung, 1995).
Adler – Individual Psychology
Strongly rejecting the works of Freud and his fixation on stages of sexual development, Adler was more of the opinion that feelings of inferiority and low self-worth were the true origin of psychological disturbances (Adler, 1956); his views today may be deemed somewhat sexist, but in his original works he proposed that masculinity was an indicator of strength and femininity was an indicator of weakness. Bryant and Mabbutt (2006) report that Adler believed all humans develop a sense of inferiority, highlighting that this can be reinforced from early childhood, when the child is fully dependant on their primary care-giver; this can be further compounded by factors including physical ailments or defects, having older siblings and parental neglect or rejection (Adler, 1956). Adler was a proponent of the view that nurture had a greater role in the formation of the personality than nature, claiming that environmental factors had a greater impact; from this belief he was able to develop the concept of ‘individual psychology’ (Gross, 2001). It is said that he assumed the role of a teacher (Adler, 1956), and employed active-listening skills to aid the process (Antai-Otong, 1999).
Perls – Gestalt Therapy
Perls also believed that the works of Freud had many limitations and were largely out-of-date and irrelevant (Perls, 1994; Houston, 2003). He came across new theories of behaviour that challenged the Freudian view (Wertheimer, 1959); these theories proposed that individuals should be viewed as a product of their unified totality, rather than expecting to derive details of their characteristics through the summation of individual aspects, forming the bedrock for what would become known as ‘gestalt therapy’ (Thorne and Henley, 2005). Perls (1994) describes additional factors of need (biological and social) that contribute to the overall desire to achieve this (Thorne and Henley, 2005); for example, the relationship between personal characteristics and the environment. Gestalt therapy aims to integrate the fractured image of the self, spawned from the reductionist views of the medical profession into the view of a complete being comprised of thoughts, feelings, physical ability and sensory inputs (Perls, 1994; Gross, 2001).
Rogers – Client-Centred Therapy
Rogers (1956) built upon the pre-existing works of Peplau (1952) to reveal his vision of client-centred therapy, putting the patient at the centre of the therapeutic process and forging an alliance based upon the concept of ‘unconditional positive regard’ (Dexter and Wash, 1991; Egan, 1994).
Rogers (1956) proposed that human values can be based upon personal experience or can be influenced by the experiences of others; however, it is noted that it is possible for distortions to occur, which can then lead to confusion. People who have conflicting emotions between their actual self and their sense of self will likely exhibit an incongruent presentation, and it is these individuals that Rogers identified as suitable candidates for his approach to therapy (Altschul and Sinclair, 1986; Dexter and Wash, 1991); reporting that personality changes could be created with the correct psycho-therapeutic approach. The application of ‘unconditional positive regard’ has the ability to instil mutual respect and trust between the therapist and the patient based on the expression of empathy (Motyka et al., 1997).
Berne – Transactional Analysis
Berne (2001) provides a model for describing life experiences in a rational manner with a positive outlook and its applications in a wide range of therapies are noted; the personality is regarded to have three separate aspects according to this model, the parent ego, the adult ego and the child ego. The ‘parent ego’ is believed to be comprised of feelings and behaviours which have been influenced from role-models of a parental nature; the ‘adult ego’ refers to the processing of information formed from life experiences, knowledge and understanding of our environment in relation to making decisions as to how to respond to a given situation; finally, the ‘child ego’ describes the innate aspects of the personality possessed from birth, such as spontaneity and creativity, however it is stipulated that unaddressed childhood traumas can pose challenges within this aspect (Gross, 2001; Fricker and Butler; 2001; Bryant and Mabbutt, 2006).
Conclusion and Summary
In conclusion, this assignment has provided an excellent opportunity to explore the history of psychodynamic and analytical psychology, along with the seminal theories and principles in a structured an academic approach (Changing States, 2018). This has been thoroughly enjoyable and it has been a useful opportunity to familiarise with the various considerations and factors relating to this subject and of learning more about the history and development these ground-breaking works.
Adler, A. (1956) Individual Psychology. Harper & Row.
Altschul, A. and Sinclair, H. (1986) Psychology for Nurses. 6th ed. London: Baillière Tindall.
Antai-Otong, D. (1999) – It’s Not What You Say, It's How You Say It. American Journal of Nursing 99(8).
Berne, E. (2001) Transactional Analysis in Psychotherapy: The Classic Handbook to its Principles. Condor Books.
Borch-Jacobsen, M. and Shamdasani, S. (2012) The Freud Files: An Inquiry into the History of Psychoanalysis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Breuer, J. and Freud, S. (1937) Studies in Hysteria. [Translated with an Introduction by Brill, A.] Nervous and Mental Disease Monograph Series (61). New York: Nervous and Mental Disease Publishing.
Bryant, M. and Mabbutt, P. (2006) Hypnotherapy for Dummies. John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Changing States (2018) Behavioural Psychology Primer. [online] -http://www.changingstates.co.uk/behavioural_approaches.html Accessed on 31st March 2018.