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The economic point of view. A defence of the concept of psychic energy, its place in theory and practic

Forsberg, Christer LU (1997) In STUDIA PSYCHOLOGICA ET PAEDAGOGICA
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Denna avhandling söker visa att psykoanalysen slagit in en bärande vägg i sin egen teori genom att avfärda det psykiska energibegreppet. Eftersom överbringande av information kräver energi (Brillouin) hamnar vi förutan ett psykiskt energibegrepp i epifenomenalism och cartesiansk dualism. Därmed skulle Darwin s a s ställas utanför psykologin. Psykisk energi kan också visas ha dynamisk signifikans, eftersom affekter ses som signaler, inte digital information, måste signalstyrka vara en relevant faktor. Datorn är otjänlig som modell för hjärnan; den senare programmerar sig själv och en genomgång av Edelmans arbete visar att preferenser, alltså lust, är en förutsättning för självprogrammering,... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Denna avhandling söker visa att psykoanalysen slagit in en bärande vägg i sin egen teori genom att avfärda det psykiska energibegreppet. Eftersom överbringande av information kräver energi (Brillouin) hamnar vi förutan ett psykiskt energibegrepp i epifenomenalism och cartesiansk dualism. Därmed skulle Darwin s a s ställas utanför psykologin. Psykisk energi kan också visas ha dynamisk signifikans, eftersom affekter ses som signaler, inte digital information, måste signalstyrka vara en relevant faktor. Datorn är otjänlig som modell för hjärnan; den senare programmerar sig själv och en genomgång av Edelmans arbete visar att preferenser, alltså lust, är en förutsättning för självprogrammering, urvalsprocesser inom en enda organism. Tvärtemot Edelmans egna slutsatser tycks psykiska processer återfinnas under hela fylogenesen. Modern kritik av psykoanalytisk motivationsteori tycks falla på liknande överväganden; vare sig Bowlby, Stern, Nathanson eller Tomkins lyckas göra sig av med lustprincipen. Sterns kritik av Freud utgår från ett mindre sofistikerat fasbegrepp än det Freud tycks ha rört sig med intuitivt. Freud råkar dock i svårigheter genom att ställa aggressionen bortom lustprincipen. Liksom de flesta teoretiker såg han inte att aggression är självmotiverande, den blir för honom en drift utan lust. Praktiska konsekvenser av bortseendet från ett psykiskt energibegrepp är av behandlingsmässigt, organisatoriskt och edukativt slag för sjukvården i stort. Cartesius kastar fortfarande en skugga över detta område. (Less)
Abstract
This thesis purports to prove the logical necessity of the psychic energy concept discarded by modern psychoanalysis by linking the "evolutionistic argument" against epiphenomenalism to Brillouin´s negentropy principle. If our conscious awareness of affects and other psychological events should be attributed a signal value at all, they must necessarily exercise effect on the soma. This presupposes an energy concept. The dynamic significance of such an energy concept is shown as well. It is also shown,contrary to the views taken by Bowlby,Stern, Tomkins and Nathanson, that the pleasure principle cannot be ruled out, but remains hidden in their respective models. Stern´s critique of freudian motivational theory seems to rely on a faulty... (More)
This thesis purports to prove the logical necessity of the psychic energy concept discarded by modern psychoanalysis by linking the "evolutionistic argument" against epiphenomenalism to Brillouin´s negentropy principle. If our conscious awareness of affects and other psychological events should be attributed a signal value at all, they must necessarily exercise effect on the soma. This presupposes an energy concept. The dynamic significance of such an energy concept is shown as well. It is also shown,contrary to the views taken by Bowlby,Stern, Tomkins and Nathanson, that the pleasure principle cannot be ruled out, but remains hidden in their respective models. Stern´s critique of freudian motivational theory seems to rely on a faulty conception of "phase", where Freud, on closer scrutiny, was more sophisticated than hitherto realized. Stern also overlooks that that his notion of "amodal perception" forces us to assume the existence of "amodal motivation". Logically, this is is equal to the concept of "libido", which Stern wishes to dismiss. Freud was wrong, however, in allocating aggression "beyond the pleasure principle". Like most theorists he overlooks the fact that aggression is self-motivating. On the other hand, Freud´s seemingly far-fetched speculations about a Death drive gain credence when juxtaposed to the riddles of modern immunology. Comparative physiology provides us with reasons to believe that the single cell may experience pleasure. This impression is indeed strengthened by re-examination of Edelman´s work, though his own conclusions are in sharp contrast with the present author´s. Edelman´s research seems to imply that consciousness is indeed a prerequisite for selectional processes within the organism, however primitive. This is a third reason for Evolution to employ psychic processes. The last three essays concern the practical intricacies ensuing the omission of a psychic energy concept. Psychosomatic illnesses may be treated quite differently according to the conceptual views of the health care systems. Indeed the form of the organizations follow the underlying philosophical out-look; cartesian parallelism is still a trend-setter. The teaching of psychodynamic therapy may also become afflicted unnessecarily if a quantitative energetic factor is not observed. (Less)
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author
opponent
  • Dr. Nilsson, Ingemar, Gothenburg, Sweden
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
libido, psychic energy, motivation, mind/body relation, consciousness, psychosomatics, darwinism, death drive, Psychology, Psykologi
in
STUDIA PSYCHOLOGICA ET PAEDAGOGICA
pages
193 pages
publisher
Department of Psychology, Lund University
defense location
Carolinasalen, Lund
defense date
1997-09-11 13:00
external identifiers
  • other:ISRN: LUSADG/SAPS--97/10 74--SE
ISSN
0346-5926
ISBN
91-628-2470-8
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
b1d143f4-a5a2-4e65-965c-0e6c65c872dc (old id 18410)
date added to LUP
2007-05-24 13:57:04
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:44:58
@phdthesis{b1d143f4-a5a2-4e65-965c-0e6c65c872dc,
  abstract     = {This thesis purports to prove the logical necessity of the psychic energy concept discarded by modern psychoanalysis by linking the "evolutionistic argument" against epiphenomenalism to Brillouin´s negentropy principle. If our conscious awareness of affects and other psychological events should be attributed a signal value at all, they must necessarily exercise effect on the soma. This presupposes an energy concept. The dynamic significance of such an energy concept is shown as well. It is also shown,contrary to the views taken by Bowlby,Stern, Tomkins and Nathanson, that the pleasure principle cannot be ruled out, but remains hidden in their respective models. Stern´s critique of freudian motivational theory seems to rely on a faulty conception of "phase", where Freud, on closer scrutiny, was more sophisticated than hitherto realized. Stern also overlooks that that his notion of "amodal perception" forces us to assume the existence of "amodal motivation". Logically, this is is equal to the concept of "libido", which Stern wishes to dismiss. Freud was wrong, however, in allocating aggression "beyond the pleasure principle". Like most theorists he overlooks the fact that aggression is self-motivating. On the other hand, Freud´s seemingly far-fetched speculations about a Death drive gain credence when juxtaposed to the riddles of modern immunology. Comparative physiology provides us with reasons to believe that the single cell may experience pleasure. This impression is indeed strengthened by re-examination of Edelman´s work, though his own conclusions are in sharp contrast with the present author´s. Edelman´s research seems to imply that consciousness is indeed a prerequisite for selectional processes within the organism, however primitive. This is a third reason for Evolution to employ psychic processes. The last three essays concern the practical intricacies ensuing the omission of a psychic energy concept. Psychosomatic illnesses may be treated quite differently according to the conceptual views of the health care systems. Indeed the form of the organizations follow the underlying philosophical out-look; cartesian parallelism is still a trend-setter. The teaching of psychodynamic therapy may also become afflicted unnessecarily if a quantitative energetic factor is not observed.},
  author       = {Forsberg, Christer},
  isbn         = {91-628-2470-8},
  issn         = {0346-5926},
  keyword      = {libido,psychic energy,motivation,mind/body relation,consciousness,psychosomatics,darwinism,death drive,Psychology,Psykologi},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {193},
  publisher    = {Department of Psychology, Lund University},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {STUDIA PSYCHOLOGICA ET PAEDAGOGICA},
  title        = {The economic point of view. A defence of the concept of psychic energy, its place in theory and practic},
  year         = {1997},
}