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4 Structural Theory of the Mind

Johnny K. Lokin, M.D.


University of Santo Tomas Hospital
Department of Neurology and Psychiatry
Sigmund Freud

Founder of classic psychoanalysis

Unconscious factors determine the shape of symptoms,


thoughts, feelings, and behavior

Id

Freuds Psychoanalytic Theory of Personality

Neurologist

Born on May 6, 1856 in Freiburg

Jewish wool merchant father

Taught hypnotism by Ambroise-August Liebault and


Hippolyte-Marie Bernheim

Work in Vienna with hysterical patients

Bertha Pappenheim Anna O

Treated patient with hypnosis in conjunction with cathartic


method

abreaction

Basic concepts:
o Deterministic

All behavior has meaning and a discoverable


cause
o Dynamic

Analyzes the flow of psychic energy


o Developmental

Personality develops through a series of


alterable stages

Freuds Topographical Level of the Mind

Three levels of awareness


o Conscious mind

We are aware of at any moment

Current thinking processes and attention to


objects

Constitutes a very large part of our current


awareness
o Preconscious mind

Which we can be aware of if we attend to them

Can be deliberately brought to the conscious


mind
o Subconscious or unconscious mind

We are unaware of and cannot be aware of


except under special circumstances

Process and content are out of direct reach of


the conscious mind

Thinks and acts independently

Freuds Personality Structure

Conscious
Unconscious

ID

S
U
P
E
R
E
G
O

Conscious
Unconscious

Mental agency containing everything inherited at birth and


fixed in the persons constitution
It is raw, animalistic, knows no rules
It is the biological component of the personality
It does not recognize fear or anxiety
It cannot tolerate frustration and has no inhibitions
Need for immediate gratification is known as the pleasure
principle
Reservoir of psychic energy and contains a certain amount
of this energy
It cannot tolerate increases in this energy and seeks to
reduce the level of this energy
The reduction of energy is known as pleasure
There are two ways to reduce energy levels:
1) Reflex action: automatic responses to sources of
irritation
2) Primary process: forming an image of an object
previously associated with satisfaction of a drive

Ego

Develops because primary process cant in reality satisfy


needs

Provides an interface between the id, which has no


contact with reality, and reality

Must find a match in reality for the images the id produces


in primary process

Takes into account the demands and restrictions of the


real world in an attempt to satisfy the needs of the id
o Balance the id and superego

Social rules necessary to live and socialize with other


people
o Secondary processes
(perception, recognition, judgment, and memory)
Superego

Incapable of much reality-testing

It aims to suppress the ids impulses and prevents the ego


from attempting to satisfy the id

Counterbalances the id, particularly in sex and aggression

It seeks to prevent pleasure (the expression of psychic


energy). Even the thought of an impulse can produce guilt

It seeks to persuade the ego to seek moralistic goals and


forego realistic ones
Structure of the Personality

The id is totally unconscious


while the ego resides within
both the preconscious and the
conscious. The superego
resides partially in all three
levels of consciousness.

S
U
P
E
R
E
G
O

Conscious
Ego

Preconscious
Ego
Subconscious
Id

Instincts

The law of the conservation of energy applies to the


functioning of personality.

Each person has a limited amount of energy.

Energy tends to accumulate over time, creating tension


which is unpleasant.

The release or reduction of energy is experienced as


pleasure.

The energy is shared among the various


components of the personality.
rainwater@mymelody.com || 1st semester, AY 2011-2012

The aim of an instinct is to reduce tension which produces


a momentary state of bliss.
The object of an instinct, which is not fixed and may
change over time, is any person or object that satisfies an
instinct.
Two major instincts:
o Eros (life instincts) include all forces serving to
maintain vital life processes and assure propagation
of the species

Energy is libido (e.g., sexual instincts)


o Thanatos (death instincts) underlie all manifestations
of cruelty, aggression, destructiveness, suicide, and
murder

Represent a desire to achieve an energyless


state (entropy) which is the ultimate pleasure

Represents an unconscious wish to die and


return to an energyless, inanimate state
(e.g., aggression is self-destructiveness turned
outward toward a substitute object)

Psychic Apparatus
Id

Superego
Ego

Basic Tenets of Freuds Psychoanalytic/Psychodynamic


Approach
(impact on psychiatric and psychotherapeutic practice)
Adult personality is determined by:
1. Notion of psychic determination
2. Unconscious mental activity
3. Role of childhood experience
Threefold Aspect of Psychoanalysis
1. Therapeutic Technique
2. Scientific and Theoretical Knowledge
3. Method of Investigation
Beginnings of Psychoanalysis

Joseph Breuer

Bertha Pappenheim Anna O

Treated patient with hynopsis in conjuction with cathartic


method

abreaction - remove symptoms through a process of


recovering and undertaking suppressed feelings with
which the symptoms were associated
The Conscious

Perceptions are brought to awareness

Subjective phenomenon

Communicated only by language or behavior

Attention cathexis a form of neutralized psychic energy


o A person was aware of a particular idea or feeling as a
result of investing a discrete amount of psychic
energy in the idea or feeling
The Preconscious

Mental events can be brought to awareness by focusing


attention

The repressive barrier

Censor unacceptable wishes

The Unconscious

Dynamic censorship and repression

Closely related instinctual drives

Primary process thinking


o Principally aimed at facilitating wish fulfillments and
instinctual discharge

Wishes provide motivation for dream and neurotic


symptom formation

Governed by pleasure principle


The Id

Reservoir of unorganized instinctual drives

Lacks the capacity to delay or modify instinctual drives

Not synonymous with the unconscious


Freuds Personality Factors
Three components of personality

Ego
o Must differentiate between things in the mind and
things in the real world
o It operates on the reality principle (understands
that behavior has consequences)
o It borrows energy from the id to carry out its functions
o It controls higher mental processes such as thinking,
reasoning, problem solving
o Its aim is to suspend instinctual gratification until an
appropriate object or environmental condition is
found (keep id impulses in check until it is appropriate
to satisfy them)
o Executive organ of the psyche
o Controls motility, perception and contact with reality
o Delays and modulates drive expression
o Spans the conscious, preconscious and unconscious

Conscious component

Logical and abstract thinking

Unconscious component

Defense mechanisms

Superego
o Represents values and norms
o First the parents and then society in general
o Represents the social component and operates under
the morality principle
o Develops from the system of rewards and
punishments administered to the child
o The conscience develops out of the punishments the
parents apply to the childs behavior
o The ego-ideal develops from the rewards and
approvals the parents apply to the childs behavior
o Establishes and maintains an individuals moral
conscience
o Based on the complex system of ideas and values
internalized from parents
o Heir to the Oedipus complex
o Provides ongoing scrutiny of a persons behavior,
thoughts, and feelings

Ego and the Id


o Transition from the topographical model of the mind to
the tripartite structural model of ego, id, and superego

Superego vs. Ego Ideal


o Ego Ideal

Prescribes what a person should do


o Superego

Dictates what a person should not do


rainwater@mymelody.com || 1st semester, AY 2011-2012