When analyzing the first half of the book “Escape from Freedom” written by Erich Fromm, I gained quite a diverse perspective towards how individuals have become constructed throughout history. Fromm had summarized, humans cannot live in freedom without consequence. Furthering this, I was able to connect similarities between Fromm’s thesis and how a man such as Adolf Hitler, came into power. With such bold statements regarding the psychology of human nature, I have both positive thoughts as well as, some opposing thoughts towards his main idea.
Within the first chapter, I gained an understanding of the concepts that lie behind Fromm’s thesis. It is not possible for the individual to completely live in freedom and to simultaneously live free of worry and anxiety. Humans are a product of their environment, and we will continue to live that way because without the structure in our lives we feel lost. Additionally, it is in my belief Fromm was providing readers with his opinion as to why humans will submit to an authoritarian leader; the authoritarian leader is easy for human’s to follow. I saw this to be a knowledgeable hypothesis as we have all been constructed throughout our lives to follow authority. From the minute the individual is born, we are raised by our parents and without that leadership human would not exist. Not only is it in our nature but also, we enjoy the simplicity of it. While living under authoritarianism, human’s have to think little for themselves, they submit to what is being told of them and with that, can bring man structure and well-being. Individuals continue to fight for freedom however, at the same time give up their individual freedom by continuously giving into our societies structures, beliefs and val...
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...ual to find freedom. If society can stop judging the differences in others, humans would be feeling most power than ever before. Consequently, if we all lived in an environment open to all differences the world would be freed of oppression and humans could be their own individuals. If one is no longer pressured to fit into the norm of society, they will be able to find freedom within them selves without anxiety or hostility.
However as a reader, I understood the author’s focus is not directed to how an individual can find freedom but more so, why the individual has yet to choose absolute freedom. Which, is why this book was quite thought provoking to read. It stated the realty of our society while also, providing the reader with an intriguing and a well-supported opinion on how such neurotic individuals like Hitler have come to gain power within our society.
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