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Psychoanalysis

Psychoanalysis is a generic term for both a set of psychological theories and a group of techniques, each of which emphasizes the unconscious as an essential factor in human adaptation and behavior. Sigmund Freud (1856–1939), an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist, originally developed the technique of psychoanalysis as a treatment for emotional disorders. From this came all of what is known today as “talk” psychotherapy. Freud also applied his insights to create a psychoanalytic theory of psychology, which emphasizes the role of the unconscious in all mental life.

Freud’s name continues to remain synonymous with both aspects of psychoanalysis. Freud expanded on Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution as the driving force in human adaptation to life and observed that the process of human development includes sexual development, ...

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