On Narcissism

On Narcissism

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On Narcissism
On Narcissism
On Narcissism was a 1914 essay by Sigmund Freud, widely considered an introduction to Freud's theories of narcissism.In this paper, Freud sums up his earlier discussions on the subject of narcissism and considers its place in sexual development...

 was a 1914 essay by Sigmund Freud
Sigmund Freud
Sigmund Freud , born Sigismund Schlomo Freud , was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis...

, widely considered an introduction to Freud's theories of narcissism
Narcissism
Narcissism is a term with a wide range of meanings, depending on whether it is used to describe a central concept of psychoanalytic theory, a mental illness, a social or cultural problem, or simply a personality trait...

.
In this paper, Freud sums up his earlier discussions on the subject of narcissism and considers its place in sexual development. Furthermore he looks at the deeper problems of the relation between the ego and external objects, drawing a new distinction between the 'ego-libido' and 'object-libido'. Most importantly he introduces the idea of the 'ego ideal
Ego ideal
The ego ideal is the inner image of oneself as one wants to become. Alternatively, 'The Freudian notion of a perfect or ideal self housed in the superego', consisting of 'the individual's conscious and unconscious images of what he would like to be, patterned after certain people whom...he regards...

', and the self- observing agency related to it. Freud also looks briefly at his controversies with Jung
Jung
Carl Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist, an influential thinker and the founder of analytical psychology.Jung may also refer to:* Jung * JUNG, Java Universal Network/Graph Framework-See also:...

 and Adler
Alfred Adler
Alfred Adler was an Austrian medical doctor, psychotherapist, and founder of the school of individual psychology. In collaboration with Sigmund Freud and a small group of Freud's colleagues, Adler was among the co-founders of the psychoanalytic movement as a core member of the Vienna...

, indeed one of his motives for writing this was probably to show that the concept of narcissism offers an alternative to Jung's non-sexual 'libido' and Adler's 'masculine protest'.