Sigmund Freud (1856-1939), is the founder of the psychodynamic approach. He proposed that human behaviour is influenced by unconscious thoughts, formed in early development and childhood (Gross 2005) and that all behaviour has a cause or reason, meaning the unconscious part of the mind to be constant conflict with the conscious (McLeod 2015). Freud put forward the theory that human consciousness is made up of three parts, the tripartite personality, consisting of the id, ego and super ego (Gross 2005). Freud also developed the idea of psychosexual stages of child’s development (Gross 2005). Freud formed the theory that the mind has several defence mechanisms to protect it from unpleasant experiences, such as repression and denial, pushing them into the sub-consciousness (Gross 2005).
Freud’s theories held a massive influence on western psychology, with Freudian terminology being used commonly across many psychological approaches (Gross 2005). The psychodynamic approach has been used to develop practical applications to treat mental health conditions such as therapy, the idea that talking can get to the ‘root’ of the problem (McLeod 2015). The psychodynamic approach has a massive explanatory po...
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...Its computer metaphor simplifies the human mind and makes the mediational processes simpler to study in scientific experiments producing models of behaviour, which have many broad applications to psychology and society. Even though it is reductionist and relies heavily on assumptions, its theories remain compelling.
This essay has analysed in detail the four approaches to psychology, the psychodynamic, behavioural, humanistic and cognitive. Through this analysis, each approach has unique theories on human behaviour, ranging from the highly scientific to deep hypotheses about the working of the inner mind. Each approach poses ideas in which therapies can be used to help an individual’s wellbeing, as well as more generally in society. Each approach has flaws in its evidence gathering techniques and concepts, but seen together they can explain almost all human behaviour.
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