depth psychology' as a term

“Depth psychology” is a term deriving from medical psychology, coined by Eugen Bleuler to denote that branch of psychological science which is concerned with the phenomenon of the unconscious:

PHILOSOPHICAL AND METAPHYSICAL

CONCEPT OF THE UNCONSCIOUS

(a)

As a philosophical and metaphysical concept, the unconscious occurs fairly early, for instance as “petites perceptions” in Leibniz, “eternal unconscious” in Schelling, “unconscious Will” in Schopenhauer and as the “divine Absolute” in von Hartmann

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THEORETICAL CONCEPT

OF THE UNCONSCIOUS

(b)

In the academic psychology of the nineteenth century, the unconscious occurs as a basic theoretical concept in Theodor Lipps, who defines it as the “psychic reality which must necessarily be thought to underlie the existence of a conscious content;” and in F. H.W. Myers and William James, who stress the importance of an unconscious psyche. With Theodor Fechner, the unconscious becomes an empirical concept. Nevertheless, the empirical approach to the unconscious may properly be said to date from quite recent times, since up to the turn of the century the psyche was usually identified with consciousness, and this made the idea of the unconscious appear untenable (Wundt)

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UNCONSCIOUS AS THE `ID'

(c)

Freud later expanded the concept of the unconscious by calling it the “id” in contradistinction to the conscious ego. (The term derives from Groddeck.) The id represents the natural unconscious dynamism of man, while the ego forms that part of the id which is modified under the influence of the environment or is replaced by the reality principle. In working out the relations between the ego and the id, Freud discovered that the ego contains not only conscious but also unconscious contents, and he was therefore compelled to frame a concept to characterize the unconscious portion of the ego, which he called the “super-ego” or “ego-ideal.” He regarded this as the representative of the parental authority, as the successor of the Oedipus complex, that impels the ego to restrain the id. It manifests itself as conscience, which, invested with the authority of collective morality, continues to display the character of the father. The super-ego accounts for the activity of the censor in dreams

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ALFRED ADLER'S SCHOOL OF

INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGY

(d)

Although Alfred Adler is usually included among the founders of depth psychology, his school of individual psychology represents only a partial continuation of the line of research initiated by his teacher Freud. Confronted with the same empirical material, Adler considered it from an entirely different point of view. For him, the primary aetiological factor was not sexuality but the power-drive. The neurotic individual appeared to him to be in conflict with society, with the result that his spontaneous development was blocked. On this view the individual never exists for himself alone; he maintains his psychic existence only within the community

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ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS AS POSSIBLE

CAUSES OF NEUROSIS

(e)

In contrast to the emphasis Freud laid on instinctual strivings, Adler stressed the importance of environmental factors as possible causes of neurosis. Neurotic symptoms and disturbances of personality were the result of a morbidly intensified valuation of the ego, which, instead of adapting to reality, develops a system of “guiding fictions.” This hypothesis gives expression to a finalistic viewpoint diametrically opposed to the causal-reductive method of Freud, in that it emphasizes the direction towards a goal

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BASIC PATTERNS FOR THE ORGANIZATION

OF ALL PSYCHIC CONTENTS

(f)

Each individual chooses a guiding line as a basic pattern for the organization of all psychic contents. Among the possible guiding fictions, Adler attached special importance to the winning of superiority and power over others, the urge “to be on top.” The original source of this misguided ambition lies in a deep-rooted feeling of inferiority, necessitating an over-compensation in the form of security. A primary organ-inferiority, or inferiority of the constitution as a whole, often proves to be an aetiological factor. Environmental influences in early childhood play their part in building up this psychic mechanism, since it is then that the foundations are laid for the development of the guiding fiction. The fiction of future superiority is maintained by tendentiously distorting all valuations and giving undue importance to being “on top” as opposed to “underneath,” “masculine” as opposed to “feminine,” a tendency which finds its clearest expression in the so-called “masculine protest”

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JUNG BECAME PERSONALLY

ACQUAINTED WITH FREUD

(g)

In 1907 Jung became personally acquainted with Freud, and derived from him a wealth of insights, particularly in regard to dream psychology and the treatment of neurosis. But in certain respects he arrived at views which differed from those of Freud. Experience did not seem to him to justify Freud's sexual theory of neurosis, and still less that of schizophrenia. The conception of the unconscious needed to be broadened, inasmuch as the unconscious was not just a product of repression but was the creative matrix of consciousness

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UNCONSCIOUS CAN NOT BE EXPLAINED

IN PERSONALISTIC TERMS

(h)

Equally, he [Jung] was of the opinion that the unconscious could not be explained in personalistic terms, as a merely personal phenomenon, but that it was also in part collective. Accordingly, he rejected the view that it possessed a merely instinctual nature, as well as rejecting the wish-fulfillment theory of dreams. Instead, he emphasized the compensatory function of the unconscious processes and their teleological character

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DEVELOPMENT OF PERSONALITY AND CONSCIOUSNESS

SUBSTITUTED FOR WISH-FULFILMENT THEORY

(i)

For the wish-fulfillment theory he substituted the concept of development of personality and development of consciousness, holding that the unconscious does not consist only of morally incompatible wishes but is largely composed of hitherto undeveloped, unconscious portions of the personality which strive for integration in the wholeness of the individual

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CONFLICT BETWEEN MATURE AND INFANTILE

SIDES OF PERSONALITY IN NEUROTIC

(j)

In the neurotic, this process of realization is manifested in the conflict between the relatively mature side of the personality and the side which Freud rightly described as infantile. The conflict has at first a purely personal character and can be explained personalistically, as the patients themselves do, and moreover in a manner which agrees both in principle and in detail with the Freudian explanation. Their standpoint is a purely personal and egoistic one, and takes no account of the collective factors, this being the very reason why they are ill

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COLLECTIVE CONTENTS OF UNCONSCIOUS

PREDOMINATE AS MYTHOLOGICAL MOTIFS

(k)

In schizophrenics, on the other hand, the collective contents of the unconscious predominate strongly in the form of mythological motifs. Freud could not subscribe to these modifications of his views, so Jung and he parted company

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