The Structure and Levels of the Mind According to Freud - Deepstash
The Structure and Levels of the Mind According to Freud

The Structure and Levels of the Mind According to Freud

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Sigmund Freud

Sigmund Freud

Sigmund Freud was the founder of the psychoanalytic theory. His work had a profound influence on psychology, sociology, anthropology, literature, and even art.

When Freud formed his personality development theory, he relied heavily upon the observations and case studies of his patients.

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Freud's three levels of mind

Freud believed that behaviour and personality came from the interaction of conflicting psychological forces that works at three levels of awareness:

  • Preconscious. It consists of anything that could potentially be brought into the conscious mind.
  • Conscious mind. It contains all the thoughts, memories, feelings, and wishes we are aware of at any given moment.
  • Unconscious mind. It is a reservoir of feelings, thoughts, urges, and memories that we are not consciously aware of. In includes unacceptable or unpleasant feelings, such as pain, anxiety, or conflict.

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The freudian slip

The conscious and unconscious minds can be understood by what is known as a slip of the tongue.

Misstatements are believed to reveal underlying, unconscious thoughts or feelings. For example, a man who accidentally uses a former girlfriend's name when referring to a current girlfriend.

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Accessing unconscious thoughts

According to Freud, thoughts and emotions outside of our awareness continue to influence our behaviour, even if we are unaware of it. The unconscious can include repressed feelings, hidden memories, habits, thoughts, desires, and reactions.

Freud used dream analysis and free association techniques to attempt to identify the roots of psychological distress.

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Role of the preconscious mind

Preconscious memories are unrepressed memories that we extract for a specific purpose.

The preconscious mind contains all the things that you could potentially pull into conscious awareness. The preconscious is also controlling the information that is allowed to enter into conscious awareness.

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