Erik Erikson

Personal information: Erik was born in Germany to danish parents in 1902. In the 1920's he met Anna Freud and soon became interested in psycho-analysis, eventually becoming admitted to the Vienna Psychoanalytical Institute. In 1933 he moved to Boston to research child development. He can be considered a Neo-Freudian and believed like Freud that there were stages of human development, however he believed that there were 8 stages of development opposed to Freud who believed there were only 6.

Important theories: 8 stages of developmental theories wherein each stage a person must overcome a conflict to become a psychologically healthy individual.
Stage 1: 0-1 years old Trust vs Mistrust. When an infants needs are met the infant will develop trust. If these needs are not met the infant will become frustrated, withdrawn and lack self-confidence.

Stage 2: 2-3 years old Autonomy vs Shame/Doubt. A child must develop a sense of self-control and independence at this stage or risk doubting their abilities and becoming a person solely dependent on others.

Stage 3: 4-5 Years old Initiative vs Guilt. This stage determines the type of person the child is going to be. At this stage a sense of responsibility is developed. Erikson believed that feelings of guilt could be compensated by a sense of accomplishment

Stage 4: 6-12 Industry vs Inferiority. A successful experience at this stage gives the child a sense of competency and mastery while failure will give the child a feeling that he or she is good for nothing.

Stage 5: Adolenscence Identity vs Confusion. At this stage is where the teenager must seek out and find who they are, finding their identity.

Stage 6: Young adulthood Intimacy vs Isolation. If the previous stage was successful the young adult will be able to have a sense of intimacy with other people. If not they will fell isolated from those around.

Stage 7: Adulthood Generativity vs Stagnation. The adult must help the younger generation develop or risk feeling stagnant.

Stage 8: Late Adulthood Integrity vs Despair. At this stage the individual looks back on there lives. If they were successful in the previous stages they will feel integrity, however if not they will feel despair.