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Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Developmental Psychology (Empirical Studies of Psychoanalytical Theories)

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Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Developmental Psychology (Empirical Studies of Psychoanalytical Theories)

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Psychoanalytic theory is, in many respects, a theory of human development. In fact, a fundamental tenet of psychoanalysis is the proposition that early experiences affect later personality dynamics. Moreover, many of the core elements of psychoanalytic theory (eg. unconscious processes, ego defenses, fixation and regression) evolved partially in an attempt to explain how early life events can affect personality functioning years after those events took place. Although developmental issues have considerably influenced psychoanalytic thinking for almost a century, many important shifts in psychoanalytic models of personality development and psychopathology have taken place since the initial theoretical formulations of Freud. In one important example, the almost exclusive emphasis on infant development has given way to a more comprehensive lifespan perspective. Another fundamental theoretical shift involves the psychodynamics of the infant-caretaker relationship: whereas early theory tended to concentrate almost exclusively on the influence of parent on child, more recent theory and research has focused on the child as an active, striving entity whose temperament and behaviour are, in their own right, important determiners of parental behaviour. In short, there has been a rich interface between psychoanalytic and developmental traditions of study - an interface that is explored by the authors of this text. The empirical research reviewed here ranges across the lifespan, from the precursors of relatedness and self-identity in mother-infant interaction to the role of hostility in suicide among younger and older adults - with examinations of concepts such as attachment and creativity as cognition and affect in between. Each volume in the "Empirical Studies in Psychoanalytic Theories" series explores empirical support for selected psychoanalytic tenets and areas of study.   show more
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  • PDF | 351 pages
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  • American Psychological Association (APA)
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