Bruno Bettelheim and Psychosocial Development

1807 WordsJun 16, 20188 Pages
Bruno Bettelheim and Psychosocial Development The psychological aspect of the human mind is one of the most mysterious and unpredictable entities known to man. Bruno Bettelheim is an Austrian-born American child psychologist and writer that gained international recognition for his blatant views on the psychological development of children. Bettelheim firmly believed that fairy tales contributed to the molding of a child's unconscious and conscious mind, and the child's entire psych as a whole. Furthermore, Bettelheim also believed that fairy tales helped a child in his search for an identity and for a meaning in life. As a child psychologist that dealt with troubled children everyday, Bettelheim cared greatly about children and sought to…show more content…
Bettelheim sought help society and to educate others in order to prevent other children and future patients from such a burden. Bettelheim believed that fairy tales must be left for a child's own interpretation in order for them to apply these tales to their own life as they begin to understand their conscious and unconscious selves. Bettelheim states that “the vagueness of the tales [is] pedagogically suited to these tasks in that it engages the child's imagination to fill in the details and invest his interests on whatever level he finds himself” (Heisig). The tales commonly deal with universal problems that everyone faces, and children are able to easily apply these universal problems and messages to their own lives. Children comprehend that although the tales are untrue, they are not unreal, so they apply these tales to their own beings (Heisig). Furthermore, the fairy tales engages a child's imagination, and this allows him to sort out his conscious and unconscious self. A child must overcome the psychological problems of growing up by coping with his unconscious self, and fairy tales allows children to familiarize themselves with their unconscious mind by fitting unconscious content into conscious fantasies, enabling him to cope with that content (Tatar 270). In the process of relieving his conscious and unconscious pressures, children must work through these psychological problems by themselves, and “in

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