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Outline & Evaluate the Psychodynamic Model to Abnormality

  • Date Submitted: 03/01/2012 09:20 AM
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Outline & evaluate the psychodynamic model to abnormality. (12 marks)
The psychodynamic model claims that abnormal behaviour results from the unconscious physic conflict related to the innate, biological drives. The model also claims that early relationships with parents are important to psychological development. These reasons have led to claims that the theory itself is deterministic and individuals are being portrayed into having very little conscious involvement in their own personality development. Ethical implications assume that people are not to blame for their own abnormal behaviour but are partially responsible for the development of abnormal behaviour in their offspring. The psychodynamic model has both strengths and weaknesses. One theory in particular called Freudian theory, suggests that the unconscious have had a profound impact on the way we think about what motivates behaviour. The theory emphasized the importance of the unconscious and its effect on behaviour. Freudians theory is hard to prove correct as empirical support has come largely from case studies, the results of which cannot be generalized. Zeldow 1995 points out that “Psychoanalytic theories have inspired more empirical research in the social and behavioural science than any other group of theories.” However, it could be said that everyone as an individual is different so the unconscious determines future abnormal behaviour completely differently for each person. An example of this is a case study of a phobia (Freud 1909). Freud suggested that the phobia a young boy had which was of horses was related to his father. Freud said that the boy was imagining the horse as being his father who he was resenting from a young age as he felt he was competing for his mothers love. Continuing with the thought that everyone as an individual is different this could be interpreted differently if it was a female child, which therefore makes the psychodynamic model invalid.


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