Ego psychology  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Ego psychology is a school of psychoanalysis rooted in Sigmund Freud's structural -- id-ego-superego -- model of the mind.

An individual interacts with the external world as well as responds to internal forces. Many psychoanalysts use a theoretical construct called the ego to explain how that is done through various ego functions. Proponents of ego psychology focus on the ego’s normal and pathological development, its management of libidinal and aggressive impulses, and its adaptation to reality.

Cultural influences

Criticisms of ego psychology

Jacques Lacan was opposed to ego psychology, using his concept of the Imaginary to stress the role of identifications in building up the ego in the first place. Lacan saw in the "non-conflictual sphere...a down-at-heel mirage that had already been rejected as untenable by the most academic psychology of introspection'. He took issue with the ego-psychology movement insofar as his form of psychoanalysis focuses on the unconscious - the id - rather than the ego. In retrospect, Lacan's approach constituted an arbitrary edifice that constituted a non-empirical shift into an abstract, non-clinical, metapsychology.

Ego psychologists have serious doubts about whether Lacan’s approach can ever apply to clinical work with real patients who have real illnesses, specific ego functions mediating those illnesses, and specific histories.

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Ego psychology" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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