Abraham Maslow, an American psychologist and at the forefront of the humanist movement in psychology, proposed a theory concerning basic human motivations that are based upon a hierarchy of needs. (Boeree 1998, 2006) Often described or pictured as a pyramid, basic physiological drives like thirst, hunger and sleep, as well as the need for safety, shelter and some feeling of security are the motivational needs that occupy the bottom tiers of the pyramid.. They provide the foundation for higher levels of needs to become present and available that the individual is aroused or driven to attain. Once those physiological and safety needs are met then the individual looks to love and be loved, to belong and be accepted by peers and to become members of groups that they identify with, and a viable part of society as a whole. Once accepted and the need for belonging is fulfilled, one looks to improve their self-esteem and garner the respect and esteem of their peers and the groups to which they belong. Finally an individual is aroused by the need to become self-actualized, to achieve all that one has the potential of becoming. ( Boeree 1998, 2006)
Each higher order of motivational need is built upon, or made available by, the fulfilling of the more basic needs below it. One is not driven to meet the higher level needs, in fact may not even be cognizant of such needs, if the needs of the lower tiers of the hierarchy are not fulfilled. The needs of the lower tiers will almost always take precedence. Should a lower tier need, particularly the physiological need, ever become the driving motivation, then the person will quickly regress, abandoning the attempt to fulfill a higher tier need in order to ...
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... can be argued that Freud was an actualized individual.
In conclusion it is hoped that a better understanding of Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs and the motivations it presents to the individual has been gained. And while admittedly woefully lacking in detail and barely scratching the surface of the person that is Sigmund Freud perhaps some knowledge of the man has been attained.
PoV Paper 2
March 24, 2010
Jones, Ernest (1953) The Life and Work of Sigmund Freud Lionel Trilling & Steven Marcus (Ed.)
New York, NY, Basic Books, Inc.
Storr, Anthony (1989) Freud New York, NY, Oxford University Press
Boeree, Dr. C. George (1998, 2006) Abraham Maslow 1908-1970 Retrieved from
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