(1885 - 1952)
Developed Psychoanalytic Social Theory
Emphasized culture over biology
Specilized in treating nuerotic patients
Developed extensive list of nuerotic sympotms
Felt isolated during childhood
One of earliest woman to attend medical school in Germany. (Received M.D. in 1915)
Long history of stormy relationships
Frequently suffered from depression and fatigue
Underwent psychoanalysis at least twice without success
Came to America in 1932
Broke with Freued by the end of the 1930's.
Founded the Karen Horney Psychoanalytic Institute in 1941 and the Karen Horney Clinic in 1952
Published Neurosis and Human Growth in 1950
Comparing Horney and Freud
Disagreed with tightly controlling psychoanalytic theory.
Early childhood experiences important, but Horney
thought safety and security amore important than sex
Believed Freud's view was pessimistic and stagnation
By focusing on cultural forces, we can change the world
The importance of culture:
Horney, like Adler, believed that cultural forces were major determinants of human behavior.
Modern Culture is based on competition
"Everyone is the real or potential competitor of everyone else"
Competition results in basic hostility
Societies demands for success are infinite.
Basic hostility can lead to intense needs for affection.
The need for affection can result in overvaluing love. Neurotic individuals strive for love and affection
10 Categories of neurotic Needs (1942)
Moving Toward People
1. Need for affection and approval
2. The neurotic need for a partner
Moving Against People
3. The neurotic need to restrict life
4. The neurotic need for power
5. The neurotic need to exploit others
6. The neurotic need for social recognition
7. The neurotic need for personal admiration
8. The neurotic need for ambition
Moving Away from People
9. The neurotic need for self-sufficiency
10. The neurotic need for perfection
Early Childhood Development
Although people can become neurotic at any stage in life, most neurosis begin in childhood
Genuine love and healthy discipline is necessary to establish feelings of safety and satisfaction.
If these needs are not met, the child develops basic hostility toward the parents.
This repressed hostility leads to basic anxiety: a feeling of helplessness and isolation in a hostile world.
Basic Hostility and Basic Anxiety are combined in a endless circle.
Basic Anxiety can lead to neurosis, but not necessarily.
One difference between a neurotic individual and a healthy individual is that neurotics do not consciously choose their method of dealing with people.
Primary Attitudes and Neurotic Trends
All social behavior can be described in one of 3 ways:
Moving Toward People
Friendly and Loving Compliant or Submissive
Moving Against People
Surviving in a competitive society Aggressive Personality
Moving Away From People
Autonomous, Serene Socially detached
Healthy people change their attitudes with the situation
Neurotic Individuals primarily exhibit only one neurotic trend across all relationships.
Behavior is a compulsion, rather than a choice.
Neurotic Trends develop from basic anxiety and feelings of isolation.
Moving Toward People: These neurotics see themselves as loving, generous, unselfish, and sensitive.
They often take a subordinate role, see others as more intelligent and capable, and their own self image is often only a reflection of how other people see them.
Moving Against People: These neurotic individuals want to be tough or ruthless. Seldom admit mistakes and see themselves as being powerful and superior. Seek to dominate others within relationships.
Moving Away Form People: These neurotics have a heightened need for privacy, independence, and self-sufficiency. Can often appear to be aloof and unapproachable, and feel discomfort in most social situations.
The idealized self-image: The difference between who you are and who you think you are.
To protect ourselves from feelings of isolation and inferiority, we generate a favorable mental concept of who we are.
This idealized self image is dependent on the neurotic trend adapted by the individual
Compliant People (toward) : See themselves as good and saintly.
Aggressive People (against): See themselves as strong and heroic.
Detached People (away): See themselves as self-reliant and wise.
An Idealized Self-Image has three aspects:
Neurotic Claims : Neurotics believe they have special privileges in life and become extremely frustrated when their wishes are not granted.
Neurotic Pride: A false pride based upon your idealized self-image Neurotic individuals avoid people who don’t "recognize" the innate superiority of the Neurotic individual.
Neurotic Search for Glory :
Self-idealization: The drive to make the idealized self-image real
Need For Perfection: in order to achieve the idealized self-image, the neurotic falls prey to the Tyranny of the Should.
Neurotic Ambition: the compulsive drive toward superiority
Drive for Vindictive Triumph: Neurotics want to show their superiority over others, and prefer to do it in a way which can cause humiliation of others.
Intrapsychic Conflict of Self-hatred
Self-Hatred arises because the neurotic realizes who they should be is not who they are.
Self-Hatred is expressed in a variety of ways:
Relentless Demands on the Self: The continual search for perfection never ends.
Merciless Self-Accusation: Continually punishing yourself for not living up to your idealized image.
Self-Contempt: belittling, disparaging, and discrediting oneself.
Self-Frustration: The neurotic will deny themselves pleasure due to a need to protect the idealized image.
Self-torment (or self-torture): Anguishing over decisions, exaggerating the pain of a headache, starting a fight they can’t win.
Self-Destructive actions and impulses: overeating, overwork, drug/alcohol dependency, breaking off healthy relationships, promiscuous sexual activity.
Horney’s Views on Feminine Psychology
After coming to America, decided Oedipus Complex was not universal, but culturally dependent.
Introduced the idea of womb envy: male child's envy for a uterus
Horney agreed with Adlers conception of Masculine Protest
Stated that it was impossible to truly know if psychological differences did exist between men and women because cultural pressures which subordinate women are so pervasive.
Karen Horney’s Psychotherapy
Wanted to encourage self-realization, which is an innate human quality.
Specifically, the patient in therapy:
Must give up their idealized self-image
This is extremely difficult because neurotics will characterize their own personality in positive terms.
People must be taught to let go of their particular neurotic trend
Successful therapy is rooted in Self-Analysis
Through Self-Analysis, the patient develop the ability to be responsible for their own psychological growth
In therapy, she used both dream interpretation and free association.
She considered dreams as attempts to solve conflicts, but solutions provided by dreams may not be psychologically healthy solutions.
Modern Research into Horney’s Neurotic Trends
Lyon & Greenberg (1991): examined codependency (what Horney called morbid dependency) in Female COAs. Compared reactions of 24 Female COAs to
24 "normal" Females. (Examines trend of "compulsively moving toward people)
During an experiment, a confederate makes one of two statements to the woman, concerning the head male experimenter. The statement can be either :
Nurturing : Mentions Experimenter had dated her friend, and had been helpful with laundry and other chores.
Exploitative : Mentions Experimenter had dated her friend, but that he made the girlfriend do his laundry and other chores.
After the "experiment", the male experimenter asks the woman if she would like to volunteer from 0 - 3 hrs of time, to help with an additional experiment
The Female COA’s volunteered at double the rate to the "exploitive" experimenter, than to the "nurturing" experimenter.
Additionally, the female COA’s reported higher liking ratings for the "exploitive" experimenter, and found him "needing to be nurtured".
Richard Rykman and colleagues have done extensive research on hypercompetetiveness, and how people high in HCA think about other people.
Hypercompetitive People are seen as highly competitive, aggresive, hostile, and callous.
Findings from numerous studies :
Hypercompetetitive people often suffer from low self-esteem.
They compensate for low self0esteem by developing a narcissistic personality style.
Additionally, people high on HCA also tend to dislike other people, and commonly use manipulation and deceit in interpersonal communication.
Males high on HCA also showed more hostile attitudes toward rape victims.
These finding support Horney’s views that hypercompetitive men had hostile and callous attitudes toward women in general
Also, studies have shown higher HCA levels among American students, compared to Dutch students. This supports Horney’s views that the US is an especially competitive culture.
Tonights Video Segments, and how they relate to Horney
1st two segments Relate to the overvaluing of love, and is taken from "Women who love Killers" (HBO, 1998)
As you view these segments, think about :
Horney’s position on the overvaluing of love.
The neurotic trend of "moving toward people"
The Lyon & Greenberg experiment with female COAs
Alfred Adler's views on "personal" and "collective" intelligence : Are these criminals persuasive, likeable, people ?
Does having "special insight" into people’s motivations and other psychological knowledge serve as adequate protection against blindly following this compulsion "towards people" (2nd segment especially).
Are these women "bad" people ? "Confused" people ?
"Ignorant" people ?
The Third video segment shows a college male with OCD,
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
Alfred Adler thought that obsessions and compulsions were psychological distractions which prevent the natural strivings in Work, Love, and Friendship.
Does this student suffer from "Obsessions" (repetitive thoughts)
or "Compulsions" (Repetitive Behaviors)
What are his specific symptoms ?
Does this condition get in the way of his normal functioning ?
What major is this person studying ?
Is this choice of major a coincidence ?