Sigmund Freud: Although I was born in Frieberg, Moravia, my family moved to Frieberg when I was just four years old and I spent most of my life there. Before joining the Gymnasium secondary school, I was homeschooled by my parents. From 1873 to 1881, I studied at the University of Vienna after graduation and graduated from the university with a doctorate degree in medicine (Jones, 1981). After that I worked and made a name for myself as a physician. I gained an interest in hysteria while working at the Salpetriere Hospital with Jean-Martin Charcot, a renowned French neurologist. I was introduced to the case of Anna O by my friend and mentor, Dr. Josef Breuer, and in 1895, together we published Studies on Hysteria based on their therapeutic treatment of Anna O. Although my works such as The Interpretation of Dreams and Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality became famous worldwide, my theory of psychosexual stages has been criticized quite often. Nonetheless, despite the skeptics, I believe my work influenced psychology and still continues to.
2) Me: What were your major contributions to the field?
Sigmund Freud: As I said, there has been a lot of criticism and debate surrounding my theories, but I am quite certain that I and my works have had a tremendous impact on the field of psychology. Through my work, I have always supported the belief psychological factors are the not the causes of all mental illnesses. I also provided evidence that behavior and psychology are impacted by cultural differences. I believe that the modern understanding of clinical psychology is a result of my work and writings. I invented and refined a new field of “psychoanalysis” (Husman) which is the reason I have become known as the father of psychoanalysis. Perhaps some of the major contributions that I have made to the field of psychology are my claims about the functioning and nature of the conscious and unconscious mind, and my exploration of the Id, Ego, and Superego. I believe that the most enduring contribution that I have made to field is my use of talk therapy for the treatment of hysteria (Husman).
3). Me: Which psychological perspective or school of thought do your ideas most closely adhere to?
Sigmund Freud: I founded the psychoanalysis school of thought of psychology and my ideas most closely adhered to it. My school of thought focuses on how human behavior is influenced by the unconscious mind. I believe that the Id, Ego, and Superego are three elements that the human mind comprises of. Our primal urges are associated with the Id, the Ego is an element of our personality that helps us deal with reality, and all of our ideals and values that are assimilated from our parents and culture are held within the superego, which is also a part of our personality. I believe that “an individual’s feelings, thoughts, and behaviors are the result of the interaction of the id, the superego, and the ego” ("Freud's personality factors").
4). Me: Is this perspective or school of thought still in existence in psychology today? Why, or why not?
Sigmund Freud: I think that the seminal concepts of my psychoanalysis have been incorporated in the cognitive science of today, but this influence has not been acknowledged. Even though the influence of psychoanalysis is so diverse, I am surprised that its remarkable contributions are ignored. Today, psychoanalysis has become a discipline beset by difficulties and problems. We are now living in an era where only those treatments are prized that have been empirically validated (Lonigan, Elbert & Johnson, 1998), and since psychoanalysis is a therapeutic approach that is defined by freedom from bias and restraint (Bion, 1967), I do not see any hope for it today
Bion, W. (1967). Notes on memory and desire. The Psychoanalytic Forum, 2(3), Retrieved from http://braungardt.trialectics.com/sciences/psychoanalysis/wilfred-bion/wilfred-bion-notes-on-memory-and-desire/
Freud's personality factors. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://changingminds.org/explanations/personality/freud_personality.htm
Husman, A. (n.d.). Psyography: Sigmund freud. Retrieved from http://faculty.frostburg.edu/mbradley/psyography/sigmundfreud1.html
Jones, E. (1981). The life and work of sigmund freud. (1st ed.). Basic Books.
Lonigan, C., Elbert, J., & Johnson, S. (1998). Empirically supported psychosocial interventions for children: an overview. J Clin Child Psychol, 27(2), 138-145. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9648031