Allport believed that a useful theory of personality rests on the assumption that people not only react to their environment but also shape then environment and cause it to react to them. Personality is a growing system, allowing new elements to constantly enter into and change the person.
Many older theories of personality, Allport (1960) believed, did not allow for possibilities of growth. Psychoanalysis and the various learning theories are basically homeostatic, or reactive theories because they see people as bemg motivated primarily by needs to reduce tension and to return to a state of equilibrium.
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