Karen Horney (1885-1952) Biography She was German American psychologist trained as a psychoanalyst in Germany who later shifted to the US. she agreed with Freud on the levels of unconscious, anxiety, and repression. She emphasized childhood experiences, social interaction and personal growth.
Disagreement with Freud
• Differed from Freud on primary impulses; impulses are not the main motivating force.
• Disagreed on Freudian position regarding the biological basis of differences between genders.
Main Concepts in Horney’s Theory:
• A Major Concept: If The Environment Is Hostile And The Child Feels Lonely And Isolated, Then This Anxiety Develops. It Can Be Overcome By Proper Parental Nurturing
• Children develop such hostility if parents are over strict, punishing, indifferent, or inconsistent.
• Children feel very aggressive and hostile but cannot express it. Repressed hostility leads to anxiety. She talked about the ways in which people interact with each other, and these were thought to have an impact upon the personality of an n individual:
• Moving away from others: seeking self sufficiency and independence
• Moving toward others: being compliant and dependant
• Moving against others: trying to gain control, power, and independence
Arise from emotional conflicts that arise from childhood experiences, and disturbances in interpersonal relationships in later life
Relationship with the real self and the ideal self Horney maintained that the real self includes those things that are true about us at any particular time. The ideal self reflects what we would like to become. For normal people, the ideal self is the goal that they would like to reach in the future; it is something around which they can organize their lives and to which they can aspire. For the neurotic person, according to her, the relationship between the real and the ideal self is a problem. In the first place, the neurotic’s impression of the real self is distorted. For him, the ideal self is a wish instead of reality and idealized self is an unrealistic, immutable dream