Introduction to Psychoanalytic Social Theory

The early writings of Karen Horney, like those of Adler, Jung, and Klein, have a distinctive Freudian flavor. Like Adler and Jung, she eventually became disenchanted with orthodox psychoanalysis and constructed a revisionist theory that reflected her own personal experiences—clinical and otherwise.

Although Homey wrote nearly exclusively about neuroses and neurotic personalities, her works suggest much that is appropriate to normal, healthy development. Culture, especially early childhood experiences, plays a leading role hi shaping human personality, either neurotic or healthy. Horney, then, agreed with Freud that early childhood traumas are important, but she differed from him in her insistence that social rather than biological forces are paramount in personality development.

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