The psychodynamic approach

  • Created by: gemshort
  • Created on: 10-11-17 15:02

The psychodynamic approach
The role of the unconscious
Freud suggested that the part of our mind that we know about and are aware of - the conscious mind - is merely 'the tip of the iceberg'. Most of our mind is made up of the unconscious, a storehouse of biological drives and instincts that has a significant influence on our behaviour and personality. The unconscious also contains threatening and disturbing memories which have been repressed. These can be accessed through dreams or through 'slips of the tongue'. Just under the surface of our conscious mind is the preconscious, which contains thoughts and memories which are not currently in the conscious awareness but which we can access if desired.

The structure of personality
Freud described personality as tripartite (composed of three parts). The id is the primitive part of our personality which operates on the pleasure principle. It is a mass of unconscious drives and instincts and throughout life it is entirely selfish and demands instant gratification of its needs. The ego works on…


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