Erikson Erikson's Psychosocial Human Development Theory

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Erikson Erikson’s psychosocial human development is largely concerned with how personality and behaviour is influenced after birth, not before, and especially during childhood just like Sigmund Freud. Erikson maintains that personality develops in a predetermined order and builds upon each previous stage and he called this the epigenic principle. He is interested in how children socialize and how this affects their sense of self. Erikson’s ideas were, to a large extent, influenced by Freud though it is important to mention that Freud is an id psychologist while Erikson is an ego psychologist. According to Erikson, the ego develops as it successfully resolves crises that are distinctly social in nature. These involve establishing a sense of trust in others and developing a sense of identity in society. His main focus is on the adaptive and creative characteristic of the ego. ( Erikson's first stage of the psychosocial human development theory occurs between birth and one year of age and he considers it to be the most fundamental stage in life. He refers to it as the basic trust versus basic mistrust (infancy) stage. The development of trust is based on the dependability and quality of the child's caregivers as he or she is entirely dependent. Whenever a need arises or even that which cause discomfort, the child seek security and provision from the caregiver. Should trust develop successfully, a child will feel safe and secure in the world. If caregivers become inconsistent and are not emotionally available, or even reject the child, it contributes to feelings of mistrust. Eventually the child fails to develop trust and this result in fear and a belief that the world is inconsi... ... middle of paper ... ...ther than strict age or life stage definitions. Each of the eight stages is characterized by a conflict between two opposing positions or attitudes; in other words dispositions or emotional forces. Erikson did not settle on a firm recognizable description for the two components of each stage although in later works the first disposition is now referred to as the 'adaptive strength'. Erikson suggests that there is still room for continued growth and development throughout one’s life and that personality is not exclusively formed during early childhood years. REFERENCES 1. Nash, Stoch, Harper. (1992). Human behaviour. Cape Town, South Africa, Juta 2. Shaffer, David R. (1994). Social and personality development. University of Georgia. USA 3. 4.
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