Classical psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, Psychoanalysis as a...

Classical psychoanalysis

Sigmund Freud

Integrated goal: to know

• the main provisions of the Freudian doctrine;

• what constitutes psychoanalysis as one of the directions of world psychology;

be able to

• conduct counseling work with patients in the spirit of classical psychoanalysis;


• skills in diagnosing neuroses in working with patients.

Psychoanalysis as a direction of world psychology

The word psychoanalysis belongs to the Austrian physician and psychologist Sigmund Freud (1856-1939). He first used this concept in his work on the origin of neuroses, which was published in French in 1896. In introducing this term, Freud pointed to a fundamentally new understanding of mental processes and methods for their study.

The concept of psychoanalysis is used in three meanings. First of all, this is a new philosophical trend. At the turn of two centuries, various philosophical currents developed in European philosophy, including the philosophy of life, pragmatism, positivism, and philosophical anthropology. Existential and hermeneutic thinking was born.

The words Freudianism and psychoanalysis are often used as synonyms. However, it should be borne in mind that it was Freudianism that elevated the position of psychoanalysis to the rank of philosophical-anthropological principles. The new philosophical direction was not only a set of mutually related hypotheses about the structure and functions of the mental apparatus as a whole. Psychoanalysis has put forward many new philosophical ideas related to the understanding of the philosophy of man, psyche, culture, etc.

The second meaning of the word psychoanalysis is associated with the technique of psychoanalysis as a method of psychological investigation of unconscious mental processes. In this sense, there were opportunities for in-depth study of the psyche, its unconscious layers of investigation of those intimate, intimate, "closed" phenomena of the psyche that were not previously available to the researcher. We are talking here about psychoanalysis as a metapsychological doctrine that allowed us to plunge into the depths of the psyche and give them a specific psychological interpretation.

The third meaning of the word psychoanalysis - a special method of psychotherapy, the study and treatment of mental disorders. With psychoanalytic theory, it is possible to help patients in the removal of neuroses, mental trauma, which have an impact on human behavior. We are talking, therefore, about psychoanalysis, referring to clinical care for those who need it, opportunities for personal growth, mental health.

The concept of Freud was influenced by the observations of the Viennese physician J. Breuer. Trying to help Anne O., Freud and Breyer developed a cathartic method of treating neuroses, based on the detection of unconscious mental trauma by hypnosis.

Catharsis (Greek letters, "cleansing") - a healing psychological explosion, purification of the soul. Originally - the term of antique aesthetics, expressing the depth of the impact of art on man. In ancient Greek usage - the liberation of the soul from the "foul", the body - from harmful substances. Pythagoreans, followers of the ancient Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras (about 570 - about 498 BC), believed that the soul suffers from harmful impurities, from harmful passions. To such they referred anger, lust, love of power, fanaticism, fear, jealousy. Cleansing the soul of these affects is, according to the Pythagoreans, specially selected music. Pythagoras, according to legend, healed melodies not only spiritual, but also physical ailments.

Catharsis - the most important moment of the development of the action in the ancient tragedy, implying an emotional discharge. Tragedy is not a simple description of sad events and terrible murders. Not the number of drams and the number of deaths creates a genre. Heroes of tragedy seek excuses for their actions. At some point, they seem to be in a desperate situation, when they have to fully comprehend their own destiny, their choice, when any decision may seem catastrophic. And the hero conquers the situation, but more often - at the cost of his own death. But that's strange. The hero of the ancient tragedy perished, and the spectators, wiping out tears of pity, parted with an enlightened soul and heart, ready for the most difficult trials. So the Greeks discovered the great mystery of the dramatic action - the mystical purification of the soul from the dirt of sensuality and corporeality. This became the property of all theaters of the world of all eras.

In the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 BC) we find the aesthetic definition of catharsis. In Policy he wrote that under the influence of music and hymns the human psyche begins to change. It creates strong feelings - pity, fear, enthusiasm, empathy. So, listeners get some clarification and relief, connected with pleasure. In Poetics Aristotle showed the cathartic effect of tragedy, defining tragedy as a special kind of imitation through not a story, but an action in which, thanks to compassion and fear, a shift of such affects occurs. The goal of the tragedy is to perform the catharsis of the soul, "cleansing of passions."

The tragedies of the great ancient Greek tragedians (V-IV centuries BC) Euripides, Aeschylus and Sophocles end with the death of the heroes and the most seemingly hopeless denial of life. However, the tragedy does not inspire despair in us, but, on the contrary, purifies the soul and reconciles it with life. How, how is the ugly and disharmonious, the content of the tragic myth, reconciled with life? Is this achieved by the mysterious power that is hidden in art, the silon that transforms the horror of life into beauty and makes it the object of our aesthetic pleasure? According to Aristotle ("Poetics", Chapter VII), the viewer, following the events of the tragedy, experiences emotional excitement: compassion for the hero, fear for his fate. This excitement leads the viewer to catharsis - clears his soul, elevates, educates him.

So, the concept of catharsis was first used in ancient Greek culture to characterize certain elements of the mysteries and religious festivals. It was inherited by ancient Greek philosophy and was used in it in various meanings (magical, mysterious, religious, physiological, medical, ethical, philosophical, etc.).

In the Newest Time, the concept of "catharsis" was widely spread in psychology and psychotherapy, which was due to its use in the theory and psychotherapeutic practice of Breuer and Freud and their achievement of a real cleansing of patients' psyche from pathogenic information and alleviation of their suffering.

Note that in psychoanalysis, catharsis is understood as the pleasure that a person experiences during a performance from his own emotions, transmitted from the emotions of another person (actor), and also as a pleasure from feeling a part of his past I (it takes the form of another person), providing security. Currently, there are several psychotherapeutic techniques and techniques designed to achieve catharsis.

However, not every emotional relief is associated with catharsis. In psychoanalysis, most often we are talking about the change of mental states, the therapeutic transition from melancholy to joy, from grief to pleasure. But this is most likely sublimation (psychological switching), rather than catharsis. Researchers note that the state of catharsis can be achieved by man using art (GI Uspensky's story "Straighten") and without the help of mystery, art or philosophy. It is possible in the event that a person can learn to learn independently from personal destiny, especially if in the real content of this fate there are also truly tragic events.

The psychotherapeutic method of Breuer and Freud was designed to treat neuroses. Z. Freud and his colleague proceeded from the fact that the pathogenic symptoms of sick people are due to unintentional mental traumas. These forgotten events of their life in their time deeply shocked them. Such symptoms correspond to an abnormal connection of a certain amount of unresolved, unexpended excitation energy. What is the essence of the treatment? In order to defuse pathogenic effects and unconscious impulses. To do this, it is enough to induce the patient to recall, reproduce and relive (but under the control of consciousness) those events that have traumatized his psyche. So, therefore, you can achieve catharsis and provide the desired psychotherapeutic effect.

The catharsic method exists in two forms, which differ from each other in the way they achieve catharsis. The first is called hypnotic (hypnotics), the second is associative. As a method of psychotherapy, the cathartic method was created exclusively using hypnosis. J. Breyer remained a supporter of hypnotics.

H. Freud replaced hypnosis by the method of free association. He believed that the cathartic method was a preliminary step in psychoanalysis.

The method of free associations. So, Freud replaced hypnosis with a new method, which formed the basis of psychoanalysis. As a result, it turned out that traumatic events, affective experiences, unfulfilled dreams only seem to disappear from the psyche. In fact, they are subjected to displacement - active removal from consciousness into the sphere of the subconscious.

This method involves the use of research, diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. Our thinking is associative, in other words, it can recall events that somehow resemble others, to revive close memories. Therefore, the method makes it possible to know the deep, mainly unconscious, mental processes. Acquired information in the course of a conversation between a psychoanalyst and a patient allows you to make corrections and cure functional disorders of the psyche. The very fact of patients' comprehension of the causes, sources and nature of problems has a therapeutic effect.

In the course of treatment, the psychoanalyst together with the patient consciously and purposefully eliminates the disease or the state of psychological discomfort. At the time of Freud, the patient was lying on the couch, and the psychoanalyst was sitting at the head of the bed so that the patient could not see the expression on his face. The doctor was interested in the process of conversation with the state of health and the patient's experiences, which he experienced in the situations of wakefulness and sleep.

Such conversations should ideally be of a confidential, confessional nature. It is assumed that the patient is extremely open, behaves uninhibited and, without regard to any limitations, expresses everything that comes to his mind. However, in fact, the patient consciously or unconsciously is resisting the psychoanalyst. Resistance is the process of blocking those memories, perceptions and experiences that are hard "bogged down" in the subconscious and do not hurry to pour into consciousness. Resistance is found in the forms of unrecognized opposition to people's ordinary awareness of repressed, and therefore, their own recovery. In the unconscious concentrated repressed sexual and aggressive drives, various impulses. But why does the patient resist? Firstly, because he does not want to relive unpleasant situations in the depths of his consciousness, and secondly, he has already "settled down" with its displacement products. This gives rise to resistance.

The discovery of resistance indicates a mental conflict. However, as a rule, in a smooth flow of conversation, the patient, without knowing it himself, "utters", i.e. spontaneously utters those phrases and words that directly or indirectly indicate the thoughts that arise in his mind. Systematization, analysis of these thoughts and associations can reveal the cause, source and nature of the disease or anxiety.

A psychoanalyst closely follows the patient's speech. Here, the topic of conversation, the pace of speech, vocabulary, despair, reservations, hitching are important. Say, the patient says: "When I realized how much I owed him, I then gave him a bedroom, that is, forgive, saber." Why was there a slip of the tongue? Or another example: a politician talks about his rival: "He is an old man!" - although the age difference is not so significant. In this case, the patient wants to look young, he unconsciously pronounces about it.

After analyzing free associations, the psychoanalyst tries to bring the patient to the heart of his problems. He tries to help his interlocutor realize the unconscious causes of his suffering, their real content and true value. It is this process that has the actual psychotherapeutic effect. The method of free association in any variant helps the patient, alleviates his suffering. People often have neither the opportunity nor the habit to think about their thoughts, analyze their experiences. Free presentation of those conditions that plague the patient always has a positive result. This method is considered the main method of psychoanalytic therapy. For the first time, Freud used the method of free associations in 1896. This year is considered the year of the creation of psychoanalysis.

The new method pointed to the existence of an intrapsychic factor - censorship. So called in psychoanalysis is the functional-figurative representation of instances, mechanisms, forces and tendencies that constantly filter various mental impulses and do not allow them to penetrate from one psychic system to another. Freud refers to the word censorship a variety of repressive tendencies that act in the zone of transition from the unconscious to consciousness. Censorship also means the mechanism of distorting dreams, when real dreams are transformed. They rearrange the material in order to present unconscious impulses in a more acceptable form to the consciousness.

Repression is a protective mechanism of the psyche, through which unacceptable to consciousness and simply painful memories are expelled from consciousness. Evolution has adapted the human psyche to life's blows. Imagine that all the unpleasant events that have occurred in our lives - loss, death of loved ones, shameful acts, the collapse of ideals - would have remained in the actual consciousness. In this case, the psyche would not stand the stress. However, repression allows you to remove from memory the drives and impulses, as well as their derivatives - emotions, memories.

The concept of extrusion - one of the main in psychoanalysis. Outside of psychoanalysis, it has no special psychological significance.

The repressed from consciousness is forgotten by man, but retains in the unconscious the inherent energy of attraction. Under the attraction of Z. Freud meant the general direction of the movement of the living organism, the unconscious desire of man to meet common needs. Freud first used this concept in the work "Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality" (1905). He distinguished between instinct and attraction. Instinct in this distinction is a biologically inherited animal behavior. And the attraction is the "psychic representation of a continuous intrasomatic source of irritation."

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