Positive Freedom

The emergence of political and economic freedom does not lead inevitably to the bondage of isolation and powerlessness. A person "can be free and not alone, critical and yet not filled with doubts, independent and yet an integral part of mankind" (Fromm, 1941, p. 257). People can attain this kind of freedom, called positive

196 Part II Psychodynamic Theories freedom, by a spontaneous and full expression of both their rational and their emotional potentialities. Spontaneous activity is frequently seen hi small children and in artists who have little or no tendency to conform to whatever others want them to be. They act according to then basic natures and not accordhig to conventional rules.

Positive freedom represents a successful solution to the human dilemma of being part of the natural world and yet separate from it. Through positive freedom and spontaneous activity, people overcome the terror of aloneness, achieve union with the world and maintain individuality. Fromm (1941) held that love and work are the twin components of positive freedom. Through active love and work, humans unite with one another and with the world without sacrificing then integrity. They affirm their uniqueness as individuals and achieve full realization of then potentialities.

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