Research Paper: Id, Ego, and Super

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Id, Ego and Superego

Id, ego and super-ego

Id, ego and superego come from Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytic theory of personality. According to Sigmund Freud, personality of composed of three distinct but interrelated elements which are the id, ego, and superego which are in constant conflict with one another and are the primary causes of human anxiety and unhappiness. These three elements work together to create the complex behaviors of human beings by influencing the physical and mental interaction of the activities conducted by the individual Bowman, 1928.

The id, ego and superego play a critical role in shaping the interaction of human beings in the world and though they are different driving forces, they interrelate and interact to resolve the conflict and create different levels of consciousness that shapes our personality by eliminating the anxiety and unhappiness.

The Id

According to Freud, the id is the only element of a person's personality that is present from the time they are born. He argues that the element is entirely unconscious or impulsive and includes the instinctive and primitive behaviors of human beings. He also asserts that the id is the primary source of all psychic energy which makes the id the primary component in shaping our personality. The id varies in accordance with the pleasure principle since it is driven by simple individualistic pleasures since it strives for immediate gratification for all of its wants, needs and desires. The pleasure principle states that every wishful impulse in a person should be immediately gratified regardless of its consequences. When these needs are not immediately satisfied, it leads to a state of anxiety, tension, or stress. The best example that is given is that of hunger. From the early ages of infancy, when an infant is hungry, they are uncomfortable and will cry until the demands of their id are met through feeding.

Freud also states that satisfying the needs of the id may not always be realistic or feasible. In trying to satisfy the needs of the id, the behavior may be disruptive or socially unacceptable such as stealing. Freud thus states that the id tries to resolve tension that results from lack of these needs through the primary process. This involves the formation of a mental image of the object being desired which helps to satisfy the need and resolve the tension Duhamel, 1999()

The ego

Sigmund Freud argues that the ego develops from the id as a result of the person's interaction with reality. He states that it is modified by the direct influences created by the external world in which we live. It develops in order to mediate between the id that is unrealistic and the external world that is real. It is the personality element that is responsible in dealing with the person's reality and it ensures that the impulses created by the id can be expressed in an acceptable manner in the real world. Freud argues that the ego functions in all three states of consciousness which are in the conscious, preconscious and unconscious minds Fromm, 1976()

Freud asserts that the ego operates on the reality principle and strives to satisfy the desires of the id in ways that are realistic and socially acceptable. It primarily weighs the costs and benefits of an action before deciding to act upon it or to abandon the impulses. In most cases, the impulses are satisfied through the process of delayed gratification, and it eventually allows the behavior but only at the time and place that is appropriate. The ego also discharges any tension that is created through the lack of immediate gratification of the impulses created by the id through the secondary process whereby the ego tries to find a real world object to match the mental image that was created by the id in the primary process with which the satisfy the need.

Smith (1963)

adds that the ego works through reasoning where the id… [END OF PREVIEW]

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