Practice Questions

for D. Palmer's Visions of Human Nature

Instructions: The self-assessment exercise for Chapter 9 is a combination of answering and asking questions. Part One contains five questions in the format you are used to from earlier chapters. Part Two sends you to the chapter report form you're all familiar with by now, and an input form where you must submit two questions of your own, to see if you know enough about this chapter to challenge your fellow students. Don't make your questions too hard, though, since I would like to use the questions I get from you for future classes. Please give me one multiple-choice question and one true-false question, taken from different parts of the chapter. Don't click the "SUBMIT" button at the bottom of this page until you have finished taking the test and are ready to submit your own test questions!

Chapter 9 - The Freudian Vision of Human Nature

Part One, Answering the Questions:

One of the key concepts in Freud's psychoanalytic view of human nature is that of the so-called "ego". Which of the following descriptions of Freudian concepts best describes the ego?
(a) The rationality - reason, logic, and common sense - that we use to tame and censor our instinctual urges.
(b) Our unconscious predisposition to be erotically attracted to the parent of the opposite sex and competitive with the parent of the same sex.
(c) A tyrannical agency that promotes guilt and uses it in negotiating with our desires.
(d) Our ability to censor and repress our memories to keep the conscious mind clear for everyday activity.
(e) The unconscious "pleasure principle" that demands instant gratification and constitutes our main biological motivation.

2. Freud uses his conversation on the train about Bosnian fatalism and Italian art to illustrate which of the following points about the workings of the unconscious mind?
(a) The unconscious is a tense standoff between the guilt-enforcing superego and the agency of censorship.
(b) The unconscious works in terms of a means-to-ends analysis.
(c) Sometimes a memory lapse is just a memory lapse.
(d) Repressed memories in the unconscious have no effect on the workings of the conscious mind.
(e) The unconscious represents an unopposed welling up of our basic, instinctual, biological urges.

3. Which of the following is true of the Freudian "id"?
(a) It takes the form of antisocial desires.
(b) Its expressions can be transformed or distorted, giving rise to internal psychological conflicts.
(c) It is a biological imperative and seeks immediate gratification.
(d) It can be found only in the unconscious part of the mind.
(e) All of the above. The id is the basic component of our mind.

4. For Freud, the interaction between our biological natures and our need for society and civilization inevitably produces which of the following effects?
(a) The process of sublimation whereby the ego and the superego are transformed into the impulse for valuable social products like art, science, morality, and religion.
(b) The complete obliteration of the id under the forces of the socially-imposed ego and superego.
(c) The repression of desires in the form of dreams, fantasies, and misdirected behavior of the sort that leads to neurosis and psychosis.
(d) A rapacious drive for the immediate gratification of our desires for food, sex, and other needs.
(e) We become able to achieve pure pleasure by drawing on the material resources that abound under the conditions of civilization.

5. Palmer argues that Freud's psychoanalytic vision of human nature provides us with which of the following things?
(a) Genuine insights into human nature, despite the speculative and untestable nature of Freud's "scientific" thought.
(b) A combination of highly creative nonsense and pseudo-religious prophecies.
(c) A dark picture of human nature that implicitly argues that the proper and efficient approach to life is scientific and medical in nature.
(d) All of the above. Freud's work has attracted a diverse field of commentators and become part of our modern repertoire of ideas and concepts.
(e) None of the above. While he is historically important, the blistering criticism Freud has been subjected to means that he currently has no real impact on modern thought.

Part Two, Asking the Questions:. When you have finished the quiz, click the "Report" button below to fill in your multiple-choice and true/false questions and send a progess report to the instructor.