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The Psychodynamic Approach:

The importance/influence of the unconscious on behaviour/personality; the importance of early childhood experiences on adult personality.

Psychodynamic Approach: Key terms & definitions

Conscious: mental processes of which we are fully aware, including easily recalled memories, motivations. Pre-conscious: mental processes just below the conscious surface. Memories, motivations that can be recalled to consciousness under particular circumstances. Unconscious: mental processes that can never be recalled to consciousness:

instincts & deeply buried memories; e.g., unacceptable sexual or aggressive thoughts, fears, shameful & painful memories, irrational desires this is the largest part of personality. 2 very powerful instincts reside in the unconscious: Libido & Thanatos. Libido=life instinct that manifests itself as sexual motives & Thanatos=death instinct/wish which manifests itself in aggression & destructiveness life instincts. (NB., Iceberg analogy.) Id: Sometimes referred to as pleasure principle=1st part of personality to develop, instinctive part of personality. I will eat the whole packet of chocolate biscuits in one go.

Psychodynamic Approach: Key terms & definitions (continued)

Ego: Or reality principle, 2nd part of personality to develop, logical & rational part of personality, balances the demands of the Id & superego, acts as a de facto referee between demands to satisfy I & demands to satisfy superego. I will eat only 4 chocolate biscuits in one sitting. Superego: Or morality principle. Last part of personality to develop (I.e., last to develop in 1st 5 years of childhood). The conscience or moral part of personality that is heavily influenced by societys rules & our parents values. Psychosexual stages of development (OAPLG): The personality develops through psychosexual stages that occur in order: Oral 0-1, Anal 2-3, Phallic 36, Latent 7-11, Genital 12-18. At each stage pleasure (libido) centres around specific parts of the body (the erogenous zones): oral=mouth, anal=anus, phallic=genitals, latent=libido is dormant so no area of fixation, genital=genitals. [See HO on Psychosexual stages.]

Psychodynamic Approach: Key terms & definitions (continued)

Fixation: This is when instead of moving on to the next psychosexual stage, a psychosexual stage is not fully resolved; the libido becomes focused or fixated on the object of the previous stage, e.g., if you still suck your thumb or bite your nails you may be fixated on the oral stage. Fixation takes 2 forms: frustration & overindulgence. Frustration=when needs are not meet; overindulgence=where needs are met too much so the child does not move on: both can cause the libido to become fixated. If fixation occurs then as an adult an individual may gain satisfaction from the stage fixated in. (See psychosexual HO.) Defence mechanisms: These are methods of protecting the ego when there is conflict between the demands of the Id & the superego. We use defence mechanisms to protect ourselves from painful, frightening or guilty feelings. If

we persistently use defence mechanisms we can lose touch with reality. There are a variety of defence mechanisms: Displacement, Denial, Projection, Repression or Motivated Forgetting, Sublimation, Regression, Reaction formation. (See Defence Mechanisms HO.)

Psychodynamic Approach: Key terms & definitions (continued)

Catharsis: This is the safe release of mental energy, venting mental pressure in a safe way, e.g., when angry doing lots of exercise to release anger. Catharsis is needed because Freud saw human emotions & instincts in terms of a Hydraulic Model. The Hydraulic Model refers to Freuds notion that the mind operates like a hydraulic machine, emotions & instincts, if there are not expressed can become pent up, leading to a build up of psychic energy or mental pressure/tension, which, if not released or discharged, can cause mental health problems. Catharsis is necessary to release this pent up emotion in a safe way; psychoanalysis provides a safe environment for catharsis to occur. Oedipus/Electra Complex: This refers to the way gender identity occurs, Oedipus complex for boys, Electra complex for girls. For boys awareness of penis - sexual feelings for mother, competes with father for attention of mother, fears father as a rival (suffers castration anxiety as notices girls have no penis), represses love for mother & identifies with father to resolve conflict & castration anxiety. The Electra complex for girls, daughter notices she has no penis (penis envy), attaches feelings to father (who has penis), blames mother for her castration so fears her, substitutes desire for penis for desire for baby represses love for father & identifies with mother. (NB., daughter does not fear castration as she has already been castrated; as she has no sense of castration anxiety her identification with mother not so great as boys identification with father.)

In depth area of study: Freuds theory of personality & gender development

Psychosexual stages of

development: oral, anal, phallic, latent, genital. Conscious, pre-conscious, unconscious Defence mechanisms: Repression/motivated forgetting, Displacement, Denial, Projection, Regression, Sublimation, Reaction formation.

Gender development:
The Oedipus Complex The Electra Complex.

Psychosexual development
Oral stage: the mouth is the focus of pleasure: fixation = orally sadistic or orally erotic. Anal stage: toilet training brings focus of pleasure on the anus: fixation= anally expulsive if parents are too lenient & child gets pleasure from making a mess; anally retentive child gains pleasure from holding back. Phallic stage: the erogenous zone or focus of pleasure is centred on the genitals: fixation=overly careful or reckless, vain, self-obsessed, arrogant.

Latency stage: a resting period, libido is not fixated on any centre of pleasure, no strong erogenous zone, no repression of desire, children form same-sex friendships & focus on school & sport.
Genital stage: starts with puberty, libido focuses again on genitals, pleasure again centred around genitals. Formation of heterosexual relationships & friendships; if there is little libido energy being taken up by unresolved unconscious conflicts from previous stages, then there is enough mental energy for normal/healthy relationships to be formed in this stage. If an individual is fixated in the phallic stage in particular, difficulties with relationships due to repression & other defence mechanisms may ensue.

Freuds explanation of gender development

The Oedipus Complex: See earlier. The Oedipus complex stems from a boys natural love for his mother, but as the libido is focused on the genitals this love becomes sexual. Freud argued that the father presents a barrier to the boys feelings towards his mother. As the father is getting in the way the son feels resentment towards his father; n.b., all this happens at an unconscious level! Castration anxiety occurs at this stage because boys notice that women dont have a penis; this then translates to a fear that the father may castrate the son if the father finds out that he wants his mother all to himself. Castration anxiety is greater than the desire to possess the mother, so this desire is repressed. This conflict has to be resolved. It is the role of the ego to do this. The ego satisfies the demands of the Id (to possess the mother) & resolves castration anxiety by strongly identifying with the father. The son identifies with the father by adopting the fathers values, attitudes & beliefs & mirroring the fathers approach to social rules & norms. This process of identification with the father leads to the development of the superego (morality principle); the sons moral outlook/code reflects that of the father. The son learns to become male by identifying with the father & in some ways becoming a younger version of him. This also satisfies the demands of the Id, as by becoming like the father the son can also possess the mother, metaphorically, in some ways, without fear of castration, due to the identification & bonding with the father. NB., much of the evidence & support for the Oedipus complex theory comes from the case study of Little Hans (1909).

Freuds explanation of gender development

The Electra Complex: Girls learn their gender roles/behaviour through identification with their mothers; however, Freud was far more vague about how this occurs in females. Girls, when they discover that women do not have a penis (in the phallic stage), they blame their mothers for the castration & so fear their mothers, but they also develop penis envy. Penis envy leads to the desire for a penis substitute a child which the father can provide, but she sees her mother as a rival for her fathers affections. The daughter identifies with her mother & learns her gender role because this will enable her to possess her father & gain a penis substitute (nb., babies & penises are symbols of social power). However, Freud believed that this process is never fully resolved for girls, their identification with their mothers is not as strong as that of boys with their fathers (due to strong sense of castration anxiety for boys, girls have already been castrated). Eventually girls learn to repress their love for their fathers & identify more closely with their mothers & sublimate or redirect their sexual desire in a more socially acceptable way. The Resolution of the Oedipus & Electra complex: Sexual desire directed towards the opposite sex parent causes a great deal of unconscious conflict; to deal with this the ego employs sublimation (a defence mechanism): it re-directs this sexual desire in a more socially acceptable way. In the Latency stage these feelings are dormant & sexual energy is sublimated via school activities etc. This sexual energy reappears in the Genital stage& the feelings the child once felt towards the opposite sex parents are directed towards a more appropriate member of the opposite sex, I.e., someone closer to their own age & not related! An unresolved Oedipus complex may, for example, cause conflict with the same sex parent in later stages/life.

Evaluation of Freudian theory

Freud provided a unique of studying human behaviour & used methods that gave novel insights into the human unconscious, e.g., dream analysis, free association, Freudian slips, which he tried to apply in a rigorous, scientific contextual way. The concept of defence mechanisms seems to have strong face validity: e.g., people often use denial about bad news. There is even some research support for it: Adams et al. (1996) & reaction among homophobic men when watching homosexual pornography they become aroused watching it despite being on a conscious, outward level homophobic. Freuds methods, nevertheless, have been criticised for being subjective & having little scientific credibility: they cannot be falsified, lack validity & reliability. Also, Freud relied heavily on case studies, which are unique personal histories so are difficult to generalise from & difficult to repeat (so lack reliability). His sample, based on his clients (he was a psychiatrist), consisted mainly of upper middle-class Viennese women, few men & only 2 children, whom he met only briefly, so cannot be considered representative enough to base a whole theory of human experience.

Evaluation of Freudian theory

The notion of the Id, ego & superego seems to have good face validity, it can explain why we often seem to be pulled in different directions & feel guilty about our desires.
It encompasses the influences of instinct (biology), logic (cognitive) & the influence of other people (social), so is a comprehensive model of personality. It does seem to be the case that children develop in stages & that early relationships with our families are very important in affecting our development.

The concept of defence mechanisms is difficult to study empirically because it is difficult to test; they are unconscious responses & therefore difficult to measure, if something is unconscious, by definition, it will be difficult to analyse. Furthermore, they are responses to threatening or traumatic situations which are hard to replicate in an artificial, controlled environment.
Similarly, the notion of the Id, ego & superego are difficult to test empirically because they are unconscious, abstract constructs/concepts.

Evaluation of Freudian theory

There seems to be some evidence for the existence of personality traits linked to the psychosexual stages, e.g., the anal personality: stubbornness, orderliness & stinginess being more prominent in some people & associated with certain prevailing attitudes regarding body functions & political views (ONeill et al. 1992; Maltby & Price, 1999) The case study of Little Hans has been used as evidence for the Oedipus complex & the need for a small boy to identify with his father. Some research suggests that girls have later relationships with (or marry) males like their father, & boys go on to have relationships (or marry) females like their mother (Connor & Brown, 2007) supporting the Oedipus complex & the Freudian notion of identification.

Although his general ideas about child development might have some face validity, his overemphasis on body-parts, libido & the sexual nature of childs development negate the validity of many aspects of his theory of child development. His notion of the Oedipus complex is not wellsupported, e.g., the case study of Little Hans is deeply flawed & is only one case study. Moreover, children in single & gay parent families do not seem to have any particular issues with gender development, as would be predicted by Freuds theory. Although children in the Phallic stage (approx.3-7) are interested in their genitals, they are generally aware of their own gender at an earlier stage (Fagot & Leinback, 1993). Castration anxiety & penis envy are obviously very difficult concepts to investigate scientifically. (Why?) Feminists take issue with Freud because his theory implies women are inferior as they lack a penis & desire a penis substitute. Gender development in girls is more vague than for boys in Freuds theory. NB., Freud was a product of his time & not especially sexist for the era.

Psychodynamic, Biological & Learning explanations of gender development

Feature Methodology Nature Psychodynamic
Dream analysis, free association, case studies Instincts (Id), unconscious & development in stages: phallic stage & libido, repression, sublimation Superego: morals, conscience & gender behaviour from parents & society Not scientific, subjective, difficult to prove scientifically & measure empirically, cannot be falsified. Stages through to 18 but gender development basically fixed by end of Phallic stage 1st 5 years 1st 5 years, resolving conflicts generated in Phallic stage very important Child identifies with same sex parent, values, behaviour etc.

Genes, twin studies, scanning, DNA & Hormones Genes & hormones

Experiments/Observtions Born blank slate ignores inherited characteristics: no nature

Nurture Scientific

Experience & environment can influence genes & hormones, but generally gender is nature Very scientific, easier to quantify, operationalise & so measure

All nurture, e.g., parents, school, peers, society, role models. Experiments, so can isolate & control variables, but human behaviour still hard to measure quantifiably. Learning is continuous & lifelong through reinforcement so can explain changes over time, by culture & across generations (Why?) Early years important, lots of learning takes place then Parents usually main providers of reinforcement & role models, especially in early years.

Changes over time Early years Parental contribution

Development fixed at birth & before, but hormonal changes over time Sex given at birth, but environment can affect gender, hormonal changes throughout life Parents give genes 50% each

Psychodynamic, Biological & Learning explanations of gender development: similarities & differences (NB., sex refers to biological
differences between men & women; gender refers to psychological & social differences.)

Psychodynamic & Biological both use case studies, but in very different ways, e.g., Little Hans, & Money. Psychodynamic & biological both allow some room for nurture influencing nature (but only limited for biological). Biological & learning are both very scientific in their approach, trying to generate quantifiable data. All acknowledge influence of parents on gender development, BUT in very different ways.

Biological & learning are both far more scientific in their methodology, more objective, less interpretative, easier to falsify. Learning focuses entirely on nurture; biological focuses almost entirely on nature; psychodynamic = combination of both. Psychodynamic=gender development occurs in stages, main stages being 0-5; biological=not stages but inherited characteristics; learning=continuous reinforcement but reinforcement received in early years very important for gender development.

Studies in detail: Can you describe & evaluate:

The case study of Little Hans (1909): Freud. AND:

Dibs: Personality development in play therapy (1964). OR:

Effectiveness of psychoanalytical therapies (Bachrach et al., 1991). OR:

Identity, personality & defence mechanisms (Cramer, 1997).

The case study of Little Hans (1909)

Name: Case study of Little Hans Aim: To cure Hans phobia of horses; to provide research support for Freuds Oedipus theory. Method: Case study, incl. dream analysis, free association & clinical interview (carried out by Hans father, Freud only saw Hans once or twice & his therapeutic input was minimal). From the age of 3Little Hans had developed such an interest in his penis, or widdler, that his mother had threatened to cut it off. He had also developed a morbid fear of horses and became scared to leave the house. At this time Hans father had stopped Little Hans getting into his parents bed in the mornings. Over time Little Hans fear of horses became limited to horses with black harnesses, he also once reportedly uttered, Daddy dont trot away from me.

Generalisability: It was a case study based on one child: therefore, not able to generalise to all children. Reliability: Case studies, because of their unique nature, are difficult to replicate. Application to real life: Freud assumed that the Oedipus complex affected all children & that everyone needs to resolve the conflicts that arise in this phase; displaced resentment & fear, including phobias can affect lots of people. Freuds focus on the unconscious has lead to psychoanalysis, a humane & compassionate way o dealing with many types of clinical conditions. Validity: Lots of detail is generated by a case study such as this, and often more detail means greater validity. However, Little Hans father provided most of the data, no information came from little Hans directly; his father may not have been very objective and much of the information gathered involved a great deal of subjective interpretation.

The case study of Little Hans (1909)

Results: Really interpretation of themes in Little Hans case history. Little Hans phobia of horses ended with 2 significant dreams/fantasies: Little Hans has several imagery children with his mother, where his father is the grandfather; the other concerns a plumber visiting the house & fitting him with a bigger widdler. Conclusion: Freud interpreted Little Hans phobia of horses as an expression of the Oedipus complex. Horses, especially those with black harnesses, symbolised his father, who had a black moustache & a bigger widdler (horses are well-endowed). Little Hans displaces his resentment & fear of his father (nb., castration anxiety) onto horses. The Oedipul resentment towards his father grew stronger when his father refused to let Little Hans into the parental bed, denying free access to his mother. The unconscious conflict with his father is happily resolved when Little Hans gets a big widdler like his father & marries his mother, with his father in the role of grandfather. At the time of this resolution his fear of horses disappears.

Validity contd: For example, assuming black harnesses reminded Little Hans of his fathers moustache, or that the phrase Daddy dont trot away from me was really that significant. It is also worth noting that Little Hans mother threatened to remove his widdler, not his father, as is suggested by the Oedipus complex. Little Hans has also been scared when he saw a horse collapse in the street, and this incident (as suggested by the Learning approach) might have been the cause of horse phobia. Concepts such as the unconscious & castration anxiety cannot be scientifically tested. Ethics: Little Hans phobia was dealt with in a compassionate, sympathetic way, he was cured simply by encouraging him to talk about his dreams & feelings.

Identity, personality & defence mechanisms (Cramer, 1997)

Name: See above Aim: Whether a young person with committed goals is less likely to use defence mechanisms than a young person with no strong goals. The more anxious & in crisis a person is, the more likely they are to sue defence mechanisms, so supporting Freudian theory. Method: 91 23 yr old males & females were given a Thematic apperception test (TAT). This is where pictures are shown & participants are asked to tell/interpret the story of the picture. They were also given a Q-sort, where they were asked to sort a list of characteristics according to how they applied to them. These identity characteristics were to measure self-esteem & commitment to goals: there were 4 types: diffused (not yet reached crisis); foreclosed (adopted goals without crisis); moratorium (in crisis); and achieved (passed through crisis & adopted own goals).

Generalisability: A large sample was used. Reliability: To ensure reliability inter-rater reliability was applied to the interpretation of the TAT stories by the coders of the stories & experienced coders were used. Application to real life: Selfesteem, anxiety, defence mechanisms, goal achievement are all important to psychological well-being. Validity: Good construct validity because it was found that in the Qsort achieved & foreclosed identity were strongly correlated with high commitment; diffused & moratorium states were not: as was expected to the case of the Q-sort was valid & had construct validity.

Identity, personality & defence mechanisms (Cramer, 1997)

Results: Diffused & moratorium states showed anxiety & used denial defence mechanisms; diffused state also used projection. The achieved state showed the least use of defence mechanisms & were lowest in anxiety, presumably no unconscious conflicts occurring. Foreclosed showed positive attitudes. Self-esteem was low for both diffused & moratorium states, & high for both achieved & foreclosed states. There were no gender differences. Conclusion: Defence mechanisms are a feature of human experience, especially during a period of crisis & their use is linked to high anxiety & low self-esteem. High self-esteem, goal achievement & commitment to goals corresponds to low use of defence mechanisms.

Validity contd: However, there are still some validity issues. Defence mechanisms are unconscious mechanisms & so difficult to measure scientifically & objectively; also the interpretation of the TAT test is open to interpretation. Furthermore, the Q-sort had only 4 categories (diffused, foreclosed, moratorium, achieved); participants may have had overlapping traits but were placed in to 1 of the 4 categories, so reducing the validity. Ethics: There are no ethical issues.

Other key studies

Dibs: personality development in play therapy (Axline, 1964). Axline, a clinical psychologist, helping Dibs, a 5 year old boy with his behavioural problems. Using psychodynamic explanation, he had an overcontrolling superego & his ego could not balance the demands of his id & superego. He had a very difficult with his parents, especially his father, and displaced his resentment & anger towards his parents on other children. Through play therapy he expressed his anger, brought it to the surface, and this enabled him to build a better relationship with his parents & regulate his emotions more effectively; it also enabled his parents to examine their own parenting style & behaviour towards Dibs (a highly intelligent child). Effectiveness of psychoanalytical therapies (Bachrach et al., 1991). A meta-analysis of 1700 patients & 450 psychoanalysts. For patients with insight, depending on how improvement is measured, between 60 to 90% patients improve significantly during psychoanalysis. However, it is impossible to predict based on initial assessments, which patients will benefit. Early research into psychoanalysis was sceptical about the benefits (Eysenck, 1952). However, Eysencks research criteria have been thrown into doubt. Leichsenring & Leiberg (2007) conducted a meta-analysis with randomly allocated control groups 7 independent judgements about patients conditions. Of 24 studies, 23 showed that psychodynamic therapies are as effective as the other standard therapies. However, there is debate about whether simply having someone listen to you might itself be therapeutic; therefore, it is the psychoanalysis per se that works, or the professional psychoanalyst, but simply the feeling that someone is listening, being sympathetic and paying you attention: the treatment is a placebo (a charge also levelled at pharmaceutical treatments of depression. NB., being in psychoanalysis can be time consuming, so expensive & disruptive to patients lives when they gain insight into the supposed unconscious reasons for their problems (e.g., poor early family relations). It is also suggested that a more effective way of dealing with psychological issues is not to focus on the past, rather to focus on the present & future, as more recently developed psychological therapies do, e.g., Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

1 Key issue from the Psychodynamic approach

The effectiveness of psychoanalysis OR False memory syndrome OR Early childhood experience & sexual orientation OR Do dreams have meaning OR Explaining individual prejudice

Key issues: Psychoanalytic therapies

Psychoanalysis: events from our childhood, especially traumatic events may be buried in our unconscious, but they cause pressure to build up (nb., the hydraulic model) which can be manifested as mental illness. Our egos often use defence mechanisms to help us deal with unconscious conflict/tension; however, this is only a short term solution. Psychoanalysis can help patients (sometimes referred to as analysands) unlock unconscious feelings which are causing pressure through dream analysis, fee association, Freudian slips & clinical interview. By bringing the problem to the surface the patient can confront the issue & resolve it. The psychoanalysis provides catharsis: a safe therapeutic environment in which past trauma can be remembered, reexperienced & worked through. In psychoanalysis transference occurs, where the patient transfers their feelings of angst towards key figures in their lives onto the therapist. Counter-transference may also occur, where the therapist transfers their own feelings onto the patient.

See notes on Bachrach et al. (1991); the effectiveness of psychoanalysis has been criticised, but there is good evidence to support its effectiveness but is it a placebo? Should the focus be on the past, would it be better for therapeutic purposes to focus on present & future? Evidence form studies such as Brown & Harris (1978), a study of clinical depression in adult women; and Lemma-Wright (1995) Alex: a case study of childhood trauma, shows that negative early childhood experiences can have a profound effect on later mental health. [See links to 2000 AS syllabus & Psychodynamic approach.] Psychoanalysis only works fro neurotic conditions, I.e., where the patient has some degree of insight about their conditions, e.g., OCD, unipolar depression, not for psychotic conditions, where the patient lacks any insight about their condition, e.g., schizophrenia. Concepts from the psychodynamic approach used in psychoanalysis, such as the id, ego & superego, role of unconscious & defence mechanisms etc., are difficult to measure & investigate in a scientific way. See also Axline (1964), Bachrach et al. (1991) & Cramer (1997) above. It is retrospective, past memories may not be accurate.

Key issues: Do dreams have meaning?

According to the psychodynamic approach dreams are the royal road to the unconscious. Dreams are often a reflection of our unconscious desires, anxieties etc., they are an expression of wish fulfilment. The unconscious mind controls much of our thinking & behaviour; the ego tries to control the demands of the id through defence mechanisms, such as repression; however, through dreams our unconscious desires can often be expressed. However, even in our dreams our egos still work to protect our conscious minds from the unconscious mind: we dream in symbols. Manifest content: the literal content of the dream, what happens in the dream. Latent content: the underlying wishes contained in the dream, or the underlying meaning of the dream, which can be discovered by interpreting the symbols used in the dream & reported in the manifest content, e.g., trains going through tunnels! 3 further processes can occur in dreams: displacement (object/person causing distress/desire is replaced by another; condensation (several aspects of a situation are combined or condensed into 1); secondary elaboration (symbols used in dreams are made into a narrative).

This theory of dreaming can explain the recurring nature of many dreams; we keep thinking about the same unresolved desires/anxieties. Dreams often do reflect our conscious worries & desires, suggesting they relate to unconscious desires. Solms (2000) shows that damage to the limbic system of the brain (linked to emotion & memory processes) leads to the loss of 2 mental functions: dreaming & wishing. This seems to suggest that dreams are somehow linked to wishes. However, there are alternative physiological explanations for dreaming, e.g., activation synthesis (Hobson & McCarley, 1978); Reverse Learning theory (Crick & Mitchison, 1983) [see links with 2000 AS syllabus-Physiological approach & powerpoint presentations]. We often dream about desires & anxieties in a very literal, non-symbolic way. Dreams are often completely random & bizarre. The interpretation of dreams is very subjective, so interpretations cannot be verified. Even Freud himself famously wrote, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

Key issues: early childhood experiences & sexual orientation

The Oedipus complex suggests that in the phallic stage a male & female children resolve their conflicts over expression of the libido with the opposite sex parent by identifying with the same sex parent. If the Oedipus complex is resolved when children reach the genital stage & they become sexual again after the latency stage, when they are with other boys & girls their libidos will be expressed through normal sexual orientation. However, if the child becomes fixated in the phallic stage, i.e., for whatever reason the Oedipul conflict is not successfully resolved, then later sexual orientation may not be normal.

Evidence for the Oedipus complex is very limited & based on subjective interpretation (Little Hans, 1909). Evidence from single parent families does not show increased rates of abnormal sexual orientation. Malinwoski (1929) studied the Trobriand Islanders, where boys are raised by their uncles, not their fathers, and the uncles are responsible for enforcing discipline. According to Freudian theory the boys should still go through the same Oedipul issues, I.e., resenting their fathers because of they prevent them having unlimited access to their mothers & fearing castration. However, the boys do have normal sexual orientation and seem to resent their uncles, suggesting the resentment stems from being disciplined, not some unconscious libido issues. LeVay suggests that brain structural differences might account for differences in sexual orientation. It is probably true to say sexual orientation is due to a complex mix of biological, psychological & social factors.

Key issues: False memory syndrome

Sometimes we use defence mechanisms to keep unpleasant & traumatic experiences in our unconscious (repression/motivated forgetting). This is a way of protecting our conscious selves from these unpleasant memories. Sometimes these repressed memories can be brought back to the surface through therapy & sometimes hypnosis. HOWEVER: Recounting things previously
buried in our unconscious may actually be an example of False memory syndrome.


Through leading questions & subjective interpretation analysts might interpret things a patient might be saying in a highly inaccurate way, or may encourage them to think things have happened to them when they have not.

Ethically, false memories are potentially v.damaging to the client & others involved. Hypnosis is notorious for confabulation, suggestibility & inaccuracy; where memories are elaborated on & mixed up. Sometimes people make memory cue errors, where they forget where they acquire information & think they must have experienced it themselves, e.g., reading things in the media & years later think they know the information because they have experienced it directly. Often people who have experienced horrific events in their childhood can actually recall them when pushed, but simply chose not to think about these early experiences. Loftus showed that overhearing a story about childhood can lead to someone accepting the event featured in the story as being real; false memories have been planted in participants using experimental methods There is some research evidence which supports a repression effect, e.g., participants given free association tasks found it harder to recall the paired word if the cue word was an emotionally charged word. However, if asked to recall the paired word some days later they could, showing that it might be initial stress of thinking about the emotionally charged word that causes poor memory not repression.

Key issues: prejudice & the appeal of horror films

One explanation of prejudice is Authoritarian personality. Authoritarian traits include: political conservatism, rigid morality, strong ethnocentric bias, dislike of change, very traditional, conventional outlook. This explains prejudice as displaced resentment towards weaker, minority out-groups. Children with cold, unloving, domineering & strict parents may take out or displace their resentment & unexpressed anger towards their parents on weaker, more vulnerable groups: hence explaining prejudice. It is argued that people who score highly on measures of authoritarianism (have an authoritarian personality) tend to have the type of family background describe above. One explanation for the appeal of horror films is that watching them is a cathartic experience, they reflect our unconscious anxieties & fears & are a zeitgeist of the time. We displace our anxieties onto the characters in the film and see our fears brought to the surface in the film, hence relieving our anxieties in a safe way, through the film.

There is some research evidence to support this theory, e.g., Adorno et al., (1950); and more recent research suggesting that link between high authoritarian personality scores & prejudice towards out-groups & minority groups. However, not all people who are prejudiced come from the family backgrounds described here; also it cannot account for more generalised prejudice in the same was that Social Identity Theory can (see Social approach). Skal (1990) argues that certain film genres are popular at certain times, reflecting the unconscious & conscious anxieties of the time. E.g., Phantom of the Opera The end of WWI & horrific injuries suffered by servicemen; 1950s America UFO/alien invasion films reflecting fears of Cold WAR & communism; 1990s Fatal Attraction Aids & dangers of stranger sex & 1 night stands; 2000s environmental disaster films & films about random violence reflecting fears about global violence & global terrorism. However, films with similar themes at any particular time could simply reflect that producers copy ideas that have been successful before & films that are more topical are more likely to be made.

Research Methods/How Science Works & Practical: Case Studies

Case studies: Much of Freuds theories is based on research gathered from case studies. Case studies are detailed studies of a unique individual, or small group of people who have had a unusual experience or have unusual traits or qualities. Case studies often involve a variety of techniques, e.g., clinical interviews, psychometric tests, questionnaires, observations, experiments & Case Histories (where qualitative data in the form of the story of the individual being studied is gathered). NB., psychodynamic case studies typically involve: clinical interviews, Freudian/action slips, free/word association, dream & symbol analysis & psychoanalysis (I.e., Little Hans). Triangulation is often a feature of case studies, where all the data from various research methods is pooled to try & establish common themes & trends. Case studies tend to gather a lot of qualitative data; Freuds case studies only gathered qualitative data. To improve the interpretation & analysis of qualitative data and, therefore, its validity, triangulation is often used. This is where qualitative data from different sources is gathered & analysed for common themes & trends. Where common themes are found from different sources suggests reliability; if similar themes are confirmed by different sources this also implies greater validity the themes identified are more likely to be valid or a genuine, true reflection of the participant or behaviour being studied. If common themes can be shown to be valid & reliable through triangulation, this also suggests generalisability. However, the nature of untriangulated qualitative data means that issues of interpretation & subjectivity often negate the validity & reliability of such data, making it far less unscientific than quantitative data which can be more easily objectively & statistically analysed.

Case Studies (Continued)

Case studies are often the only means of studying a rare event or person with a unique experience, I.e., researchers cannot deliberately engineer scenarios on individuals to see how they would react. Case studies often generate a great deal of qualitative, detailed data, so are arguably highly valid. The data frequently comes directly from the persons concerned & often in their natural surroundings again making the data generated more valid. Psychodynamic Case Studies: they can be used to help the patient (analysand), as well a study them, e.g., Little Hans. Freud developed special methods/techniques to access the unconscious & to gather data from patients in complex situations with difficult psychological issues.

Due to their unique nature, case studies cannot be replicated which reduces their reliability. There is a large amount of subjective interpretation involved because of the qualitative nature of the data, affecting validity to some extent & reliability: different researchers may interpret the qualitative data differently. Also, as they are unique it is impossible to say if other individuals in the same situation would behave in the same way, i.e., they cannot be generalised. Objectivity may be undermined because the researcher often spends a lot of time with the subject of the case study. Psychodynamic Case Studies: The analyst has to do a lot of interpretation (e.g., dream & symbol analysis) & this interpretation could be highly subjective, not scientific. Concepts used in psychodynamic case studies, such as the unconsciousness & defence mechanisms etc. cannot be tested in a rigorous scientific manner.

Case Studies & Ethics:

Confidentiality & privacy are particularly relevant with regard to case

studies. (Personal details should only be used with permission; pseudonyms should be used to protect anonymity.) Masson (1989) has made specific criticisms of Freudian case studies. The interpretation of the psychoanalyst, because of their perceived expert power & salience in the patients life, can push the patient towards certain values & goals that may not be their own: so the psychoanalysis may have undue control, power & influence over the patient. (NB., respect for patients autonomy?) There appears to be a strong gender bias in Freuds work, e.g., boys are focused on far more than girls: girls have weaker identification with the same sex parent & so have weaker moral development according to Freud. (NB., respect for all individuals, treating everyone with equal respect.) There is arguably an overemphasis on sexual matters, which is not only a credibility issue (it stretches the credibility of Freuds theories); it is also an issue with regard to transference, where the patient may transfer feelings of a sexual nature, or resentment etc., onto the analyst. This too can be ethically sensitive.

Correlation studies are studies where there is no IV & DV 2 variables are measured against each other, e.g., how extrovert you are & what type of social life you have (clearly you would have to operationalise the variables carefully in order to measure & compare them). It is not suggested that 1 variable causes the other, cause & effect relationships cannot be inferred, simply that the variables are related. There is a relationship between the 2 variables but it cannot be inferred that 1 variable causes the other. Correlation studies often rely on self-report data, using rating scales. Ratings scales generate ordinal data (see later slides). Correlation studies are not repeated measures, matched pairs, or independent measures designs (see Social & Cognitive sections); they involve the same participant providing data for the two variables being measured, e.g., personality type & type of social life. Correlation designs are used to help establish if there are relationships between variables that might merit further investigation. There are 2 types of correlation (or relationship): positive & negative. A positive correlation is where when 1 variables rises so does the other; e.g., as IQ rises so does income; the longer psychoanalysis takes place, the better the outcome for the patient (Bachrach et al., 1991): of course this does not mean that psychoanalysis is necessarily the cause of the better outcome, time might be the key factor not the psychoanalysis itself spontaneous recovery over time is a feature of some clinical conditions (e.g., clinical depression). A negative correlation is where as 1 variable rises, the other falls; e.g., as IQ rises the likelihood of suffering from a mental disorder falls. A perfect correlation gives a score of : a score 0.87 would be close to 1 so indicates a v.strong correlation or relationship. One to establish the level of correlation is to gather the data for the 2 variables being compared & out them into rank order, highest to lowest. If the highest scores for 1 variable match with the highest scores for the other variable it is positive correlation; if the high scores for one variable match the lowest scores for the other, it is negative correlation. A scattergraph is used to represent correlations graphically. To establish if the level of correlation is statistically significant an inferential statistical will be used: for this course it will be Spearmans Rank or Spearmans RHO at a level of significance of p<0.05.

Correlational Designs

Correlation Designs (Continued)

In many cases there is little manipulation of variables, with variables often occurring naturally because the variables being measured are of existing situations. This means research is less contrived & fewer controls are needed, making the research more valid & realistic.
Correlations can show relationships between variables that might not be expected, therefore, highlighting an are of research that might not otherwise be explored.

Correlations simply show relationships between variables, not cause & effect. Scientific knowledge is usually based on notions of causal connections. Whereas it might be useful to know if relationships exist, it is much more useful to know the causes behind these relationships.
There are still some validity issues with correlation studies; usually at least one of the variables being measured has to be operationalised, e.g., personality or IQ. How these variables are operationalised is often quite artificial & contrived & so less valid.

Longitudinal & Cross-sectional studies

Longitudinal studies: these follow the same group of participants

over a long period of time, weeks, months or even years, employing a variety of methods to study these individuals, e.g., experiments, surveys & observations. Child of our Time on BBC1 is a good example of a longitudinal study. Cross-sectional studies: these are often regarded as the opposite of longitudinal studies. The are measures taken at one moment in time instead of over a prolonged period. A cross-section of the target population is studied, as opposed to the same group of participants, hence more than one group of participants is studied. For example, if Child of our Time was a cross-sectional study, instead of waiting every 2-3 years to study the same group of children, infants, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14 year olds etc. would be studied at the same time.

Longitudinal Studies
There are very useful for studying the developmental trends in children, or the effects of particular variables over time, e.g., media violence.
As they use the same participants it eliminates participant variables (variables between the participants taking part) so reducing bias. It also means the participants, as they are the same group will have similar experiences and cultural/social influences, e.g., Child of our Time all the children are living in & going to school in the UK being influenced by similar social & cultural phenomena (excluding social class & ethnicity).

As the research takes place over a prolonged period it is very expensive & time consuming & full conclusions can be a long time in coming.
As the research takes place over a long time participants may drop out, reducing the sample size & making it less representative & reliable. The researchers themselves may move on & new researchers may have a different relationship with the participants, possibly affecting the results.

Cross-sectional studies
Results & conclusions are much As different participants are used participant variables quicker in arriving, which has lots of can affect results. E.g., in Child of our Time if different age ranges were to be studied at the same time, how practical benefits, e.g., making the things are taught, what is taught, parenting styles, social study cheaper & easier to carry out. There are arguably more ethical because research measures are only being imposed on the participants once, rather than over a sustained period. As the research takes place only once, drop rates will be low so reliability & generalisability should remain high.
attitudes towards children etc., might all be factors affecting development which could differ between the age ranges, especially the greater the age ranges, e.g., between children raised in the 1970s/80s & children raised in the late 1990s, 2000s. All these things could affect their language skills & psychology development. It is generally harder to control & eliminate confounding variables between 2 or more groups of participants than it is if studying the same group of participants over time, e.g., if studying the same group of individuals it would be easier to control for social class & leisure interests than if studying 2 different groups at the same time, I.e., being working class in the 1970s might be quite a different experience to being working class now, similarly with leisure interests.

Types of Data: nominal, ordinal, interval & ratio

The type of data used in research determines the type of inferential statistical used to establish statistical significance. Nominal: The simplest form of data. Information, or data, is simply placed into categories & you simply count how many participants fall into each category, e.g., how many males & females; how many have passed their driving test or not; are aged 20-24, 25-30, 31-35 etc., held open a door for a stranger, did not, stopped at zebra crossing, did not etc., Ordinal: this is where data is put into order, e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc., Likert scales are examples of ordinal data, e.g., how do you rate the 6th form? very good, Good, Average, Poor, very poor. Ordinal data can be used to put things into rank order, e.g., exam results or rating of a hotel or restaurant. V.good, or A* would clearly be 1st, good or A 2nd, average or B 3rd etc. However, putting things into rank order does not tell you what the intervals are between categories, I.e., they are not necessarily the same. E.g., good is better than poor but is the gap between V.good & Good the same as the gap between Poor & Very poor? Interval: This is data that is measured on a scale which has precise & equal intervals, e.g., temperature; knowing that today was 27c & yesterday was 24c is more accurate & precise than knowing that today was very warm & yesterday was warm, or that today was hotter than yesterday. Interval data conveys much more information than ordinal data. Ratio: This is information that has all the characteristics of interval data, plus it has a true 0 point (unlike temperature where it can be 6c etc.). There are no negative values with ratio data, e.g., something cannot weigh 6grams.

Research Methods/How Science Works & Practical: The Practical

NB., you need to sampling methods for unit 2 as well as unit 1 (see Social Approach). A study from the psychodynamic approach must be some form of correlation, using variables related to this approach & using the Spearman RHO statistical test to test for significance; data must therefore be ordinal and generated through self-report methods, e.g., questionnaires, interviews, likert scales. Perhaps you could compare commitment to goals or high self-esteem with lower anxiety & use of defence mechanisms; or individual characteristics associated with anality, e.g., lack of generosity (careful, parsimony), orderliness & political views/attitudes (e.g., how traditional or right wing); anal; traits & parental strictness/permissiveness; dreams/symbols in dreams & unconsciousness wishes/anxieties (a dream diary will have to be carried out). NB., you must ensure that the research follows BPS ethical guidelines. You should avoid topics & questions that may be embarrassing, stressful or potentially distressing. To generate useful statistical information a sample of at least 20 participants is needed. Consider relevant background research to help you establish your aims & hypothesis. Operationalise your variables; e.g., how are you going to operationalise/measure self-esteem (maybe a scale relating to anxiety), or sense of commitment/purpose? Pilot your questions first to ensure that you have operationalised your variables effectively

Research Methods/How Science Works & Practical: The Practical

Writing up the practical:

Abstract: brief summary of whole study, including results & conclusion.

Introduction: background research relevant to your study. Rationale, Aims & Hypothesis: reason for conducting the study, relating to introduction & background research, what the study is going to do, what you expect to find & aims & hypothesis. Method: the study design, participant details, sampling method, apparatus, procedure, controls - what was actually done. Results: summary tables, rank order, scattergraph, results of inferential statistical tests/Spearman RHO test. Is hypothesis supported or not? Conclusion: what the results mean, your interpretation of results, is the background research supported or not? Was the study sufficiently valid, reliable, credible & generalisable? References: details of other studies cited in your research to ensure no plagiarism. Appendices: all the other information necessary to complete your study, e.g., raw data, examples of questionnaires used, questions asked, standardised instructions, debriefing notes, letters sent to ask permission where necessary etc.

The Practical
Correlation 2 self-rating questionnaires.

Is there a relationship between parenting style &

personality traits. The more authoritarian (strict) the parenting, the more anally retentive the adult Anally retentive personality traits: frugal (2), tidy (2), smart appearance(2), punctual (1), careful (1) Authoritarian traits of parents: strict (2), uncompromising (2), thorough (1), conscientious (1), traditional (1)

The Practical contd

Tick from each questionnaire the 4 which apply to you

& your parents: Anally retentive: frugal, intelligent, messy, tidy, organised, attractive, punctual, happy, smart appearance, boring, generous, successful. Authoritarian (strict) parents: relaxed, permissive, uncompromising, conscientious, traditional, kind, strict, thorough, interested, successful, generous. Alternatively, replication of Cramer (1997) study: Identity, personality & defence mechanisms