Theories of Personality Term Paper by Nicky

A look at different theories of personality according to Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Carl Jung, Erik Erikson, and Carl Rogers.
# 145285 | 1,201 words | 4 sources | APA | 2010 | US
Published on Oct 31, 2010 in Psychology (Behaviorism) , Psychology (Freud) , Psychology (Jung)

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This paper discusses how personality is a complex construct and how, inevitably, several theorists have come up with varying explanations as to its source and mechanisms. As such, several approaches have surfaced over the last century, some of which are: psychoanalytic (Freudian and Neo-Freudian), humanistic, biological, behavioral, social learning, trait, and cognitive. In this paper, the ideas of the following theorists on personality are discussed: Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Carl Jung, Erik Erikson, and Carl Rogers.

Sigmund Freud
Alfred Adler, Carl Jung, Erik Erikson
Carl Rogers

From the Paper:

"The Psychoanalytic Approach as proposed by Sigmund Freud claims that personality differences is a function of the unconscious and early childhood experiences (Rathus, 2007). According to his Topographic Model, personality is divided into three parts: conscious (thoughts currently aware of), preconscious (thoughts brought to awareness with little difficulty), and unconscious (thoughts not easily brought to awareness). Later on, Freud saw the inadequacy of the Topographic Model in explaining personality and so added the Structural Model which also divides personality into three parts: id (concerned with immediate gratification of needs regardless of physical or social limitations), ego (concerned with reality, and keeps the balance between id and superego), and superego (concerned with following the society's standards and values). Freud asserted that human behavior is motivated by internal factors, specifically the Libido (life or sexual instinct) and Thanatos (death or aggressive instinct)."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Burger, J.M. (2005). Personality (6th ed.). Wadsworth: Singapore.
  • Cambray, J. & Carter, L. (2004). Analytical psychology: contemporary perspectives in Jungian analysis. NY Taylor & Francis; New York.
  • Rathus, S. A. (2007). Psychology: Concepts and connections (8th ed. briefer). Wadsworth: Belmont, CA.
  • Santrock, J. W. (2004). Life span development (9th Ed.). McGraw Hill; New York.

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

Theories of Personality (2010, October 31) Retrieved March 04, 2024, from

MLA Format

"Theories of Personality" 31 October 2010. Web. 04 March. 2024. <>