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Psychoanalytic vs the Humanistic viewpoint

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1. Compare and contrast the psychoanalytic viewpoint and the humanistic viewpoint. Which one appeals to you more and Why?

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III. Humanistic Theory
Humanism is a reaction to the pessimism of psychoanalytic theory and the mechanism of learning theory. At its core is a new image of what it means to be human. They view human nature as inherently good and they seek ways to allow our positive potentials to emerge. They reject the Freudian view of personality as a battleground for biological instincts and unconscious forces, and they oppose the mechanical "thing-like" overtones of the behaviorist viewpoint. We are not, they say, merely a bundle of moldable responses; rather, we are creative beings capable of free choice. To a humanist, the person you are today is largely the product of all of your previous choices. The humanistic viewpoint also places greater emphasis on immediate subjective experience, rather than on prior learning. Humanists believe that there are as many "real worlds" as there are people. To understand behavior, we must learn how a person subjectively views the world --what is "real" for her or him.

l. Abraham Maslow (1908-1970). Idea of self-actualization. Studies of people living unusually effective lives. An interest in people using almost all of their talents and potentials. Albert Einstein, William James, Jane Adams, Eleanor Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, John Muir, and Walt Whitman. Then he moved on to directly study artists, writers, poets, and other creative individuals. His thinking changed radically along the way. It became clear that a housewife, carpenter, clerk, or student could live creatively and make full use of his or her potentials. His primary contribution was to draw attention to the possibility of continued personal growth. He considered self-actualization an ongoing process, not a simple end point to be attained only once.
Characteristics of Self-Actualizers:
l. Efficient perceptions of reality. Were able to judge situations correctly and honestly and were very sensitive to the face and dishonest.
2. Comfortable acceptance of self, others, nature. Were able to accept their own human nature with all its shortcomings. The shortcomings of others and the contradictions of the human condition were also accepted with humor and tolerance.
3. Spontaneity. Extended their creativity into everyday activities. They tended to be unusually alive, engaged, and spontaneous.
4. Task centering. Had a mission to fulfill in life or some task or problem outside of themselves to pursue. Humanitarians such as Albert Schweitzer or Mother Therese represent this quality.
5. Autonomy. Were free from dependence on external authority or other people. They tended to be resourceful and independent.
6. Continued freshness of appreciation. The self-actualizer seems to constantly renew appreciation of life's basic goods. A sunset or a flower will be experienced as intensely the one-thousandth time as it was the first. There is an "innocence of vision," like that of an artist or child.
7. Fellowship with humanity. Felt a deep identification with others and the human situation ...

Solution Summary

Using an array of information, this solution assists in making comparisons between the psychoanalytic and the humanistic viewpoint, as well which one is more appealing, and why. Supplemented with an infromative article on Humanism.

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