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In Psychology and Life (Chapter 1, 18th edition), the authors (Gerrig and Zimbardo) write that

According to the psychodynamic perspective, behavior is driven, or motivated, by powerful inner forces. In this view, human actions stem from inherited instincts, biological drives, and attempts to resolve conflicts between personal needs and society’s demands. Deprivation states, physiological arousal, and conflicts provide the power for behavior just as coal fuels a steam locomotive.

I'm wondering if these two lists "match up." In other words:

  • inherited instincts — deprivation states
  • biological drives — physiological arousal
  • attempts to resolve conflicts between personal needs and society’s demands — conflicts

By "match up, I mean are they related as elements are in the following example:

Freud's structural model of the psyche includes the id, the ego, and the superego, which relate to instinctual drives, the need to develop and maintain an organized and realistic perception of the world, and the internalization of cultural rules, respectively.

It's this "respectively" part I'm focused on. Did the authors write those sentences with that sort of relationship in mind?

Thanks.

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1 Answer 1

No, not really. In the first quote, deprivation states are mentioned separately from physiological arousal because homeostatic and nonhomeostatic motives for behaviour are often discussed as separate forces:

Homeostatic motives include hunger, thirst, respiration, and excretion. They work to keep the body in a balanced internal state. The term homeostasis refers to the body's tendency to maintain such a balanced internal state. Many homeostatic motives are set in motion either by bodily deficits or bodily excesses. When the body needs water, for example, changes occur that cause thirst and motivate the person to seek something to drink.

Nonhomeostatic motives include sex, such activity as nest building, and curiosity about the environment. These motives are aroused by occasional forces. In the absence of such forces, nonhomeostatic motives may be inactive. In contrast, the needs for food, water, and air--homeostatic motives--have almost continuous influence.

The first quote thus just acknowledges this distinction without discussing it further. Here, deprivation states refer to homeostatic motives and physiological arousal to non-homeostatic ones. Freud does not make this distinction when he discusses instinctual drives.

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Thank you very much for the useful response. I have a small amount of training in economics, and when someone asks me about "intrinsic value," I usually say that, to my thinking, things like food, water, and oxygen have it, while just about everything else is a function of perception. I figure I'll keep excretion in mind, but probably not add it to the list. –  Eric Sherman Dec 19 '13 at 3:33

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