Stages of Development: Comparison Between Freud and Erikson

1999 WordsOct 7, 20088 Pages
In order to compare Freud’s theory of psychosexual development with Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development an overview of each will first be discussed, followed by a comparison of similarities and differences. Freud’s Theory of Psychosexual Development Freud believed personality was crystallised in childhood thus proposing a series of developmental stages progressing from birth to puberty. As with other stage theories Freud’s psychosexual stages of development occur in a predetermined sequence which may overlap with each stage identifying a particular notable behaviour. Whether the individual progresses through the stage successfully without fixation he/she may develop a healthy personality; however should the individual…show more content…
The first stage of development is basic trust versus mistrust and is presented from birth to age 1. As Erikson proposed, social interaction determines the resolution of and crisis faced; the primary focus of this stage is thus the primary caregiver. As a child is dependent upon the parent during this period it is the parent’s consistency on which the child learns to trust or mistrust. If the caregiver shows consistency in their parenting style the child will successfully resolve this stage and develop confidence in themselves and a sense of security in the outer world. If the parent shows an inconsistent manner in routine the child will develop mistrust and show a sense of fear about an inconsistent world; the result of a failed resolution. Later personality traits of an unsuccessful resolution may be heightened insecurity and anxieties (Erikson, 1980; Heffner, 2001). It is between the ages of 1 and 3 when the child faces the crisis of autonomy versus shame and doubt. During this period the individual experiences independence and will begin to assert this independence through walking away from their caregiver, choosing the toys they prefer to play with, etc. If the child is encouraged to do so by the caregiver a sense of autonomy is developed and the crisis will be successfully resolved. However, if the child is over-protected and
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