A Report on The Power and Limits of Power Essay Sample

7 July 2017

The Power and Limits of a Vision by Paul Roazen challenges the contentions of Erikson on three cardinal constructs: individuality crisis. life rhythm and psychosocial development- the rampart of Erik Erikson’s work and his bequest to psychological science and societal scientific disciplines. In this book. Roazen argues that similar to Freud. Erikson’s popular constructs and theories may non needfully keep true. Roazen challenged his constructs chiefly by oppugning the beginning and the methods by which these constructs were derived from which are largely from the personal experiences of Erikson. This paper reviews the book of Koazen on The Power and Limits of a Vision by Erik Erikson as a response to the demand to clear up the importance and the starkness of the theories of Erikson including the primary constructs in his plants.

The positions and positions in Paul Roazen’s The Power and Limits of a Vision brings into inquiry the theory and constructs of the most influential psychosocial theoretician in the individual of Erik Erikson. Roazen. a political scientist and depth psychology historiographer provided an extended reappraisal and re-assessment of Freud’s work bespeaking that depth psychology is non the ideal signifier of intervention. Chiefly. a political scientist. it should be noted that Roazen’s critic of Erikson stems from his rating of depth psychology. societal and political idea embedded in Erikson’s theories.

A Report on The Power and Limits of Power Essay Sample Essay Example

Unlike old psychological science bookmans. Roazen started his book by following the similarities between Erikson and Freud by specifically picking up the popular constructs that are attributed to them. For Erikson. these would include the constructs of individuality crisis. life rhythm and psychosocial development- constructs that have withstood unfavorable judgments and betterments from followings and critics of Erikson. From these three constructs. The Power and Limits of a Vision centered its treatment on the geographic expedition and appraisal of Roazen on these subjects.

The first major inquiry in the book was that of the credibleness of Erikson in undertaking the issue of individuality when in fact. he had disclosed his ain confusion of his ain individuality. Hence. to link and speculate and cut down human behaviour to the pursuit of happening one’s individuality harmonizing to the book would be unreal. The Power and Limits of a Vision so traces the psychosocial development in striplings which is individuality versus function diffusion in order to joint individuality crisis. Harmonizing to the theory of Erikson. adolescents’ experiences individuality crisis during this clip as a consequence of their increasing independency from their household and the increasing influence of their societal environment peculiarly their equals. The inquiry posed by Roazen roots from his critic that Erikson himself were unable to unwrap the faith of his stepfather and of his ain faith ( Judaic ) . Consequently. the book tactfully inquiries Erikson’s inability to admit that he was an illicit kid. Roazen’s book inquiries the concealment of Erikson’s roots as a mark that he himself was unable to labor through his individuality crisis. The Power and Limits of a Vision explores this subject further and in it Roazen speaks of the denial of Erikson’s ain individuality hence. the 1 that he had may non be reliable.

While the challenges that were presented by Roazen in the book points to the personal dependability of Erikson as a theoretician. the 2nd critic dwells on human behaviour and the single differences in nearing it. In the succeeding parts of the book. Roazen inquiries the fullness of Erikson’s human behaviour constructs peculiarly his geographic expeditions of experiential crisis. Harmonizing to Roazen ( 1977 ) . persons vary in their geographic expeditions of their ain being and few would contemplate on their experiential crisis. The book argues that while people are pre-occupied with about the same concerns such as consciousness. gender. etc. . the fluctuation would impart less credibleness of Erikson’s claims. However. Roazen objectively notes that Erikson did non claim the authoritativeness of his theories on personality. But instead. the restrictions of his theories lies largely in his inability to analyze several topics merely like most psychological science bookmans do now. His ain scrutiny of his experiences therefore. lends the restrictions of his ain research.

The 2nd issue in The Power and Limits of a Vision has been that of Erikson’s life rhythm theory in which Roazen argued that Erikson by explaining on his theory of psychosocial development’s eight constituents. Erikson differentiated between the positive and the negative side of development. In the procedure of making so. he is recommending uniformity to the positive side of development hence. making a position quo of uniformity in psychological science. In Roazen’s term this is similar to the indorsement of political conservativism. The rigidness of this division is implied in the sameness in the experiences of persons throughout the life cycle- something that would do the single ego ambigious in order to give manner to the societal ego. In exemplifying the life rhythm theory. Erikson harmonizing to Roazen used Marthin Luther as his focal point of discussion- from his displacement in personality and in his philosophies which is manifested in the alterations on his phase of development. For case. the last phase of Erikson which is Generativity V Stagnation has been achieved by King which allowed him to set humanity and God every bit good as his restrictions in his philosophies.

However. despite the unfavorable judgments of Roazen. the writer acknowledges the power of Erikson’s theory in finding the positive side of human behaviour. The positive geographic expedition of Erikson which is a going from Freud’s negative geographic expedition of human behaviour showed that persons can set to their societal and personal environment in order to make an equilibrium necessary to equilibrate their personalities from that of society’s norms and traditions.

Consequently. Roazen responds to the averment of Erikson that society in general had given manner to the alterations in people’s psychosocial development by bespeaking that while society had given people this chance. societies including the United States has besides deprived people from showing their ain individualism and civilization through repression.

As a whole Rozen provided a balanced presentation of Erikson’s theory and concepts- while admiting that Erikson’s prognostic power in human behaviour still stands today. there are some bounds to this power. In The Power and Limits of a Vision. Roazen’s primary concern was of the methods by which Erikson had devised his theories on and on its impact on the society as a whole. In making so. it is evident in The Power and Limits of a Vision was more concerned with the social effects of Erikson’s doctrines alternatively of the single geographic expedition of the mind and personality. Roazen in his decision virtues Erikson’s ability to foretell every bit good as maintain optimism of human behaviour despite the negativisim that is evident in the plants of Freud- a major influence in Erikson’s work.

Contemplation and Analysis

At the start of the book. one would hold the construct that Roazen is simply knocking Erikson. However. this is non the instance as Roazen provided a balanced and well-articulated inquiries on the cogency and the dependability of Erikson’s theories. For case. from the rubric entirely. The Power and Limits of a Vision presents an recognition and congratulations of the ability of Erikson’s theories to defy unfavorable judgments but at the same clip. it besides brings Forth the failings of Erikson’s plants.

By and large. Erikson’s theory and cardinal constructs have stood over several critics. most. with the same inquiries as that of Roazen. Thus. Erikson had already answered some of Roazen’s inquiries in old plants. The primary concern that is new to Roazen’s The Power and Limits of a Vision is that of the concern for the society as a consequence of the predictability in human behaviour. Roazen’s book hence. provided necessary inquiries as to the fullness of the constructs of individuality and the impact of personality and human behaviour to society as explained in the psychosocial development of Erikson. However. while The Power and the Limits of a Vision credibly expressed some failings in Erikson’s theory. it failed to sufficiently weaken the claims of Erikson.

First. the inability of Roazen to supply a believable critic is his absence of an alternate theory or doctrine that would be a replacement or alternate to Erikson’s theories on individuality. life rhythm and psychosocial development. For case. he foremost rejected the theories of Freud as being excessively negative and considered Erikson as excessively positive and deterministic in qualifying the development of persons. Consequently. the deficiency of supplying a concrete psycho-social paradigm has been because of the focal point of Roazen on the society. While Erikson considers the society as an of import contextual background and force of his plants. his primary focal point is that of the person and his/her behaviour. Hence. Erikson focused on an internal analysis of the individual taking into consideration the external environment and the society as of import determiners of one’s behaviour and development. However. Roazen on the other manus. as a political scientist is more concerned with the cogency and impact of these claims on the social degree. Hence. while on one point Roazen is right. its unfavorable judgments are non plenty to weaken the claims of Erikson.

Second. the critics of Roazen besides relied on the dependability of the research method employed by Erikson. For case. Roazen in the first parts of the book questioned the personal life of Erikson bespeaking that Erikson may non hold accurately described the phase of striplings and in the formation of individuality because he himself was undergoing an individuality crisis due to his inability to admit his paternal roots and his faith. By oppugning the dependability of Erikson as a beginning of informations. The Power and Limits of a Vision besides puts into inquiry the authority of qualitative method as a scientific discipline. This unfavorable judgment has both its strengths and failings: on one manus. qualitative method as used by Erikson lacks the power of generalisation or fullness peculiarly because he based it on his ain experiences ; on the other manus. this method of enquiry provides the necessary deepness of analysis that is needed in order to accurately picture the personality and mind of an person.


Roazen. P. ( 2002 ) Erik H. Erikson: The Power and Limits of a Vision by Paul Roazen Free Press. 254 pages.

How to cite A Report on The Power and Limits of Power Essay Sample essay

Choose cite format:
A Report on The Power and Limits of Power Essay Sample. (2017, Jul 27). Retrieved June 17, 2021, from https://newyorkessays.com/essay-a-report-on-the-power-and-limits-of-power-essay-sample-essay/
A limited
time offer!
Save Time On Research and Writing. Hire a Professional to Get Your 100% Plagiarism Free Paper