1.Measures of Personality

For many years, there’s been an ongoing debate within psychology regarding the validity and usefulness of the comprehensive yet controversial theory of human personality espoused by Sigmund Freud. Some components of Freud’s theory are generally accepted, such as the ego defense mechanisms. Yet, many aspects of Freud’s theories have stirred vigorous debate among psychologists over the years such as the notion that infants and children are sexual beings, the five psychosexual stages of development, the Oedipal complex, and even the existence of the unconscious mind.


Select an aspect of Freud’s theory and post a thoughtful and reflective position statement explaining your opinion about a specific part of Freud’s theory. Be thorough and logically argue the reasons for your view.

In short, was Freud right? Is Freud’s Personality Theory relevant today?


Although a number of aspects of Freud’s theory are no longer widely accepted, there are numerous reasons for him to still be considered the “Father of Modern Psychology.” Freud was the first to introduce the idea that people might behave in ways of which they are unaware or, at least, that people might be unaware of why they engage in certain behaviors. As such, his concept of the unconscious is considered to be one of his most notable contributions to the field of personality psychology and has become a cornerstone of the field that is still very relevant today.

Freud’s defense mechanisms are also widely accepted as a major contribution to the field of psychology, and many people, even those not in the field, acknowledge them as explanations for behavior. In fact, many other personality theorists later described similar defense mechanisms, although they might use different terminologies, and some have added to Freud’s initial list. Additionally, Freud, through his writings on the psychosexual stages, originated the notion that early childhood experiences affect the development of personality. Although most personality theorists now de-emphasize the sexual motivation component of Freud’s psychosexual stages, the stages themselves are still widely recognized in the general public, and even if one does not agree with his interpretation of events at those stages, certainly Freud’s observation that those time periods are important cannot be denied.

Ashcraft, D. (2015). Personality theories workbook, 6th Ed. Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

Your text explains Freud’s defense mechanisms in section 3.4 on pages 55-63.  Additional information can be found at the following websites:

  • Utah Psych – Defense Mechanisms (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
  • Simply Psychology – Defense Mechanisms (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.


Submit a 400-600 word paper that provides a deep explanation of defense mechanisms. In your paper,

  1. Choose two defense mechanisms and give a brief overview of their meaning.
  2. Describe an example situation or characteristic way of behaving in which you see these defense mechanisms play out in your own life. Be specific and explain why this is an example of the defense mechanism.


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