Who Provides the Better Approach to Human Behaviour, Freud or Skinner
According to Freud’s theory, ‘people must successfully pass through five stages of development in order to become healthy, well adjusted adults’ (Miller & Shelly, 2001, p. 35). Each phase has an objective that must be accomplished successfully. If the goal is not reached, the person becomes ‘fixated at the uncompleted stage, which results in problems later in life’ (Miller & Shelly, 2001, p. 34). The five stages are: oral, anal, phallic, latent, and genital. The oral stage lasts from birth to eighteen months of age and is primarily based on eating, drinking and sucking. In Freud’s view, the ‘handling of the child’s feeding experiences is crucial to subsequent development’ (Weiten, 2001, p. 495). He attributed considerable importance to the manner in which the child is weaned from the breast or the bottle. In fact, according to Freud, fixation at the oral stage could form the basis for obsessive eating or smoking later in life (Benson, 1998).
In the anal stage, the two year olds focus of pleasure shifts to the anus, helping the child become aware of its bowels and how to control them. The crucial event at this time is toilet training, which represents ‘society’s first systematic