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January 13, 1951

Neurosis and Human Growth: The Struggle Toward Self-Realization

JAMA. 1951;145(2):124. doi:10.1001/jama.1951.02920200064035

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In this volume Dr. Horney has developed her own theories concerning the neurotic process, which differ somewhat from freudian concepts. She describes neurosis as a special form of development, which is the antithesis of normal human growth. It is stated that in stress, a person becomes alienated from his real self and develops instead a false, idealized self, based on pride but harassed by doubts, self-contempt and self-hate. On this basis the author describes the many factors entering into the slowly developing neurosis and the associated reaction formations, which are attempts at solution through "the expansive solution: the appeal of mastery," "the self-effacing solution: the appeal of love" and "resignation: the appeal of freedom." In contradistinction to these automatically developing neurotic solutions, the author describes the road of solution through psychoanalytic therapy. The variability of the responses of a patient in the course of analysis between self-idealization and self-realization are

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