Sigmund Freud is the subject of three major films or TV series, the first of which was 1962's Freud: The Secret Passion starring Montgomery Clift as Freud, directed by John Huston from a revision of a script by an uncredited Jean-Paul Sartre. The film is focused on Freud's early life from 1885 to 1890, and combines multiple case studies of ...
Sigmund Freud, Austrian neurologist, founder of psychoanalysis. Despite repeated criticisms, attempted refutations, and qualifications of Freud’s work, its spell remained powerful well after his death and in fields far removed from psychology as it is narrowly defined.
Mar 04, 2020 · Sigmund Freud was an Austrian neurologist who developed psychoanalysis, a method through which an analyst unpacks unconscious conflicts based on the free associations, dreams and fantasies of the ...
- 2 min
- Backdrop to His Thought
- The Theory of The Unconscious
- Infantile Sexuality
- Neuroses and The Structure of The Mind
- Psychoanalysis as A Therapy
- Critical Evaluation of Freud
- References and Further Reading
Freud was born in Frieberg, Moravia in 1856, but when he was four years old his family moved to Vienna where he was to live and work until the last years of his life. In 1938 the Nazis annexed Austria, and Freud, who was Jewish, was allowed to leave for England. For these reasons, it was above all with the city of Vienna that Freud’s name was destined to be deeply associated for posterity, founding as he did what was to become known as the ‘first Viennese school’ of psychoanalysis from which...
Although a highly original thinker, Freud was also deeply influenced by a number of diverse factors which overlapped and interconnected with each other to shape the development of his thought. As indicated above, both Charcot and Breuer had a direct and immediate impact upon him, but some of the other factors, though no less important than these, were of a rather different nature. First of all, Freud himself was very much a Freudian–his father had two sons by a previous marriage, Emmanuel and...
Freud’s theory of the unconscious, then, is highly deterministic—a fact which, given the nature of nineteenth century science, should not be surprising. Freud was arguably the first thinker to apply deterministic principles systematically to the sphere of the mental, and to hold that the broad spectrum of human behavior is explicable only in terms of the (usually hidden) mental processes or states which determine it. Thus, instead of treating the behavior of the neurotic as being causally ine...
Freud’s theory of infantile sexuality must be seen as an integral part of a broader developmental theory of human personality. This had its origins in, and was a generalization of, Breuer’s earlier discovery that traumatic childhood events could have devastating negative effects upon the adult individual, and took the form of the general thesis that early childhood sexual experiences were the crucial factors in the determination of the adult personality. From his account of the instincts or d...
Freud’s account of the unconscious, and the psychoanalytic therapy associated with it, is best illustrated by his famous tripartite model of the structure of the mind or personality (although, as we have seen, he did not formulate this until 1923). This model has many points of similarity with the account of the mind offered by Plato over 2,000 years earlier. The theory is termed ‘tripartite’ simply because, again like Plato, Freud distinguished three structural elements within the mind, whic...
Freud’s account of the sexual genesis and nature of neuroses led him naturally to develop a clinical treatment for treating such disorders. This has become so influential today that when people speak of psychoanalysis they frequently refer exclusively to the clinical treatment; however, the term properly designates both the clinical treatment and the theory which underlies it. The aim of the method may be stated simply in general terms–to re-establish a harmonious relationship between the thr...
It should be evident from the foregoing why psychoanalysis in general, and Freud in particular, have exerted such a strong influence upon the popular imagination in the Western World, and why both the theory and practice of psychoanalysis should remain the object of a great deal of controversy. In fact, the controversy which exists in relation to Freud is more heated and multi-faceted than that relating to virtually any other post-1850 thinker (a possible exception being Darwin), with critici...
1. The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud (Ed. J. Strachey with Anna Freud), 24 vols. London: 1953-1964.
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- What Are The Most Interesting Ideas of Sigmund Freud?
- The Case of Anna O
- The Unconscious Mind
- The Psyche
- Psychosexual Stages
- Dream Analysis
- Freud's Followers
- Critical Evaluation
What are the most interesting ideas of Freud?
By Saul McLeod, updated 2018 Sigmund Freud (1856 to 1939) was the founding father of psychoanalysis, a method for treating mental illnessand also a theory which explains human behavior. Freud believed that events in our childhood have a great influence on our adult lives, shaping our personality. For example, anxiety originating from traumatic experiences in a person's past is hidden from consciousness, and may cause problems during adulthood (in the form of neuroses). Thus, when we explain o...
The Case of Anna O
The case of Anna O (real name Bertha Pappenheim) marked a turning point in the career of a young Viennese neuropathologist by the name of Sigmund Freud. It even went on to influence the future direction of psychology as a whole. Anna O. suffered from hysteria, a condition in which the patient exhibits physical symptoms (e.g., paralysis, convulsions, hallucinations, loss of speech) without an apparent physical cause. Her doctor (and Freud's teacher) Josef Breuer succeeded in treating Anna by h...
The Unconscious Mind
Freud (1900, 1905) developed a topographical modelof the mind, whereby he described the features of the mind’s structure and function. Freud used the analogy of an iceberg to describe the three levels of the mind. On the surface is consciousness, which consists of those thoughts that are the focus of our attention now, and this is seen as the tip of the iceberg. The preconscious consists of all which can be retrieved from memory. The third and most significant region is the unconscious. Here...
Freud (1923) later developed a more structural model of the mind comprising the entities id, ego, and superego(what Freud called “the psychic apparatus”). These are not physical areas within the brain, but rather hypothetical conceptualizations of important mental functions. The id, ego, and superego have most commonly been conceptualized as three essential parts of the human personality. Freud assumed the id operated at an unconscious level according to the pleasure principle (gratification...
In the highly repressive “Victorian” society in which Freud lived and worked women, in particular, were forced to repress their sexual needs. In many cases, the result was some form of neurotic illness. Freud sought to understand the nature and variety of these illnesses by retracing the sexual history of his patients. This was not primarily an investigation of sexual experiences as such. Far more important were the patient’s wishes and desires, their experience of love, hate, shame, guilt an...
Freud (1900) considered dreams to be the royal road to the unconscious as it is in dreams that the ego's defenses are lowered so that some of the repressed material comes through to awareness, albeit in distorted form. Dreams perform important functions for the unconscious mind and serve as valuable clues to how the unconscious mindoperates. On 24 July 1895, Freud had his own dream that was to form the basis of his theory. He had been worried about a patient, Irma, who was not doing as well i...
Freud attracted many followers, who formed a famous group in 1902 called the "Psychological Wednesday Society." The group met every Wednesday in Freud's waiting room. As the organization grew, Freud established an inner circle of devoted followers, the so-called "Committee" (including Sàndor Ferenczi, and Hanns Sachs (standing) Otto Rank, Karl Abraham, Max Eitingon, and Ernest Jones). At the beginning of 1908, the committee had 22 members and renamed themselves the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society.
Is Freudian psychology supported by evidence? Freud's theory is good at explaining but not at predicting behavior (which is one of the goals of science). For this reason, Freud's theory is unfalsifiable- it can neither be proved true or refuted. For example, the unconscious mind is difficult to test and measure objectively. Overall, Freud's theory is highly unscientific. Despite the skepticism of the unconscious mind, cognitive psychology has identified unconscious processes, such as procedur...
- A Closer Look at Freud's Life
- Freud's Major Theories
- Freud and Psychoanalysis
- Freud's Patients
- Major Works by Freud
- Freud's Perspectives
- Psychologists Influenced by Freud
Our exploration of his legacy begins with a look at his life and time. His experiences informed many of his theories, so learning more about his life and the times he lived in can lead to a deeper understanding of where his theory came from. Discover more about his life in this brief biography and timeline of his life, discover some of his most famous quotations, or take an in-depth photo tourof his life from birth to death.
Freud's theories were enormously influential, but subject to considerable criticism both now and during his own life. However, his ideas have become interwoven into the fabric of our culture, with terms such as "Freudian slip", "repression", and "denial" appearing regularly in everyday language. One of his most enduring ideas is the concept of the unconscious mind, which is a reservoir of thoughts, memories, and emotions that lie outside the awareness of the conscious mind. He also proposed that personality was made up of three key elements, the id, the ego, and the superego. Some other important Freudian theories include his concepts of life and death instincts, the theory of psychosexual development, and the mechanisms of defense.
His ideas had such a strong impact on psychology that an entire school of thought emerged from his work. While it was eventually replaced by the rise of behaviorism, psychoanalysis had a lasting impact on both psychology and psychotherapy.
Throughout Freud's career, a number of his patients helped shape his theories and became well-known in their own right. Anna O, for example, was never actually a patient of Freud's. She was, however, a patient of Freud's colleague Josef Breuer. The two men corresponded often about Anna O's symptoms, eventually publishing a book exploring her case, Studies on Hysteria. It was through their work and correspondence that the technique known as talk therapy emerged. 1. Anna O. (aka Bertha Pappenheim) 2. Little Hans (Herbert Graf) 3. Dora (Ida Bauer) 4. Rat Man (Ernst Lanzer) 5. Wolf Man (aka Sergei Pankejeff)
Freud's writings detail many of his major theories and ideas, including his personal favorite, The Interpretation of Dreams."[It] contains...the most valuable of all the discoveries it has been my good fortune to make. Insight such as this falls to one's lot but once in a lifetime," he explained. Some of his major books include: 1. The Interpretation of Dreams 2. The Psychopathology of Everyday Life 3. Totem and Taboo 4. Civilization and Its Discontents 5. The Future is an Illusion
Freud wrote and theorized about a broad range of subjects including sex, dreams, religion, women, and culture. Learn more about some of Freud’s perspectives and how these views influenced his own theories. 1. Freud and Women 2. Freud and Religion
In addition to his grand and far-reaching theories of human psychology, he also left his mark on a number of individuals who went on to become some of psychology's greatest thinkers. Some of the eminent psychologistswho were influenced by Sigmund Freud include: 1. Anna Freud 2. Alfred Adler 3. Carl Jung 4. Erik Erikson 5. Melanie Klein 6. Ernst Jones 7. Otto Rank While Freud's work is often dismissed today as non-scientific, there is no question that he had a tremendous influence not only on psychology but on the larger culture as well. Many of his ideas have become so steeped in the public awareness that we oftentimes forget that they have their origins in his psychoanalytictradition.
- Childhood in Austria-Hungary. Sigismund Freud (later know as Sigmund) was born on May 6, 1856, in the town of Frieberg in the Austro-Hungarian Empire (present-day Czech Republic).
- Attending University and Finding Love. As his mother's undisputed favorite, Freud enjoyed privileges that his siblings did not. He was given his own room at home (they now lived in a larger apartment), while the others shared bedrooms.
- Freud the Researcher. Intrigued by the theories on brain function that were emerging during the late 19th century, Freud opted to specialize in neurology.
- Hysteria and Hypnosis. In 1885, Freud traveled to Paris, having received a grant to study with pioneering neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot. The French physician had recently resurrected the use of hypnosis, made popular a century earlier by Dr. Franz Mesmer.
Quote by Sigmund Freud. A Look on Freud's Theories. While Freud was an original thinker, his theories and studies were influenced by the works of other scholars including Breuer and Charcot. However, Freud developed his own scientific studies that were different from the theories of his colleagues.
- Freud’s death may have been a physician-assisted suicide. By the summer of 1939, Freud was frail and suffering intense pain from terminal, inoperable mouth cancer.
- His chain-smoking led to more than 30 cancer surgeries. Freud became addicted to tobacco after lighting up his first cigarettes in his twenties. His daily constitutionals always included stopovers at a local tobacco store, and after graduating to cigars, he often smoked more than 20 of them a day.
- Freud once thought cocaine was a miracle drug. In the 1880s, Freud grew interested in a little-known, legal drug being used by a German military doctor to rejuvenate exhausted troops—cocaine.
- He turned down $100,000 from a Hollywood mogul. By 1925, Freud’s fame had spread so widely that movie producer Samuel Goldwyn offered the Viennese psychoanalyst, whom he called the “greatest love specialist in the world,” $100,000 to write or consult on a film script about “the great love stories of history.”
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