The Awakening - Personality Developments

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PERSONALITY DEVELOPMENT 	The idea that one can understand and comprehend the development of an individual is profound and abstruse, but very few people have actually had success dealing with such a topic. From obstacles such as proper test subjects to the whole stigma of taboo attached in trying to understand the human mind, researchers and psychologists have had success. One of the most notable successes is that of Sigmund Freud, the father of modern psychology, as we know it. Freud’s in depth pioneering journey into the minds of people, and how the mind itself develops with the passing of time and events. Other modern psychologists have elaborated on Freud, including the psychologists Erik Erikson and Karen Horney. Their thoughts on the personality development of people relate directly to Kate Chopin’s book, The Awakening. In this book, the theories discussed by Freud and his successors are shown explicitly and implicitly. 	Obviously, Sigmund Freud’s work in the field of personality development was by far the most prolific and controversial. The father of modern psychology, Freud broke all barriers to expose what he thought to be the real reasons for human behavior. His theories of personality development can best start with the discussion of the conscious and the unconscious mind. The conscious mind—along with the lesser preconscious mind—is that part of the mind that one has control, or knowledge of. Ironically, this is the least part of the mind that one has control over. The so called "subconscious" mind is the part of the mind that lurks beneath the surface, filled with instincts, emotions, and unfulfilled desires (Shaffer 26). The total human mind is divided into the famous three parts of the Id, the ego, and the superego. The Id can be correlated directly to the subconscious, since it contains one’s innermost thoughts, feelings, and desires, or as Freud would call them, "wishes". The Id represents one’s innermost and primitive desires, such as food and reproduction, and it constantly drives one’s actions. The total antithesis of the Id is the superego. The superego in the case of personality development, comes directly from parents. This superego is consisted of the conscience (punishments and warnings) and the ego ideal (positive rewards and role models). Thus the superego can be defined as what keeps the Id in check, which leads to the ego. The ego is the rationalizing factor, it is the result of the superego and the Id, canceling each other out.
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