Erik Erikson 's Theory Of Life Span Development

2134 Words Feb 16th, 2015 9 Pages
Introduction:
Erik Erikson’s views on the eight stages of development formalized and systematized the concept of life span development. His framework suggested that humans should be understood longitudinally and socially in the development of personality. Erikson is generally regarded as having a comprehensive, time tested, and well-established theory for growth along the life span.
Erikson’s views on development made an addition to some aspects of Freud and deviated from some of his other emphases. Erikson proposed that we develop more “Psychosocially” than “Pyschosexually” (Freud’s framework), which crosses the entire life span. His view is deterministic in the sense that adults are effected by their childhood, but he is not reductionistic in suggesting that the entire mold of adult personality is formed only in the early years; rather there is ongoing development throughout life.
Erikson’s eight stages are best characterized as obstacles that humans must pass through in order to meet and succeed at challenges presented to their life. Failure in one of the stages will ultimately result in a breakdown of personality, and in a more acute sense, one cannot progress along the life span. One must say that these transitions involve a “crisis that must be resolved” (Santrock, 2012, pp.22).
Identity vs. Role Confusion
Apart from Piaget’s emphasis on the development of cognition, the teenage years may be expressed in terms of the search for identity. Erikson harnessed this truth in…
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