Psychoanalysis Essay

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Psychoanalysis: The Study of the Unconscious Mind Psychoanalysis was a pioneering force in the study of the unconscious mind. Psychoanalytic theory is based on the concept that an individual’s behavior and emotions are controlled by unconscious factors. These factors were said to affect a person’s mood and could result in unhappiness which may lead to disturbing personality traits, difficulty in relating to others, or self-esteem issues (American Psychoanalytic Association, 1998). Treatment using psychoanalysis attempts to trace the unconscious factors to their origins and show how they have developed over time. The goal of this type of treatment is to help individuals overcome challenges they face in life whether they be internal or social (National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis, 1998). The term psychoanalysis was first coined in 1896 by an Austrian physician named Sigmund Freud. Freud stressed the idea that the unconscious mind was a strong determining factor of an individual’s personality and behavior, which is the cornerstone of psychoanalysis. Freud began writing on his ideas about the conscious (what we know) and unconscious mind (what is unknown), dream interpretation and many other topics. By 1925 the idea and practice of psychoanalysis had spread worldwide and Freud was thought of as a leading expert in the field. Much of Freud’s findings were results of individual case studies. Case studies are an in-depth study of a person. Freud would analyze nearly every aspect of a subject’s life and history in hopes of detecting patterns and causes for behavior. The idea behind this was that Freud could then use the information gathered in these case studies to generalize his findings in order to help others suffering from the same issues. Freud believed that the human mind was made up of three elements known as id, ego

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