The methods developed by Freud and Marx have enabled a range of scholars to critically reflect upon the ideological underpinnings of modern and now postmodern or hypermodern western societies. In this intriguing book, the discipline of psychology itself is screened through the twin dynamics of Marxism and psychoanalysis. David Pavon-Cuellar asks to what extent the terms, concerns and goals of psychology reflect, in fact, the dominant bourgeois ideology that has allowed it to flourish.
The book charts a gradual psychologization within society and culture dating from the nineteenth century, and examines how the tacit ideals within mainstream psychology - creating good citizens or productive workers - sit uneasily against Marx and Freud's ambitions of revealing fault-lines and contradictions within individualist and consumer-oriented structures.
The positivist aspiration of psychology to become a natural science has been the source of extensive debate, critical voices asserting the social and cultural contexts through which the human mind and behaviour should be understood. This challenging new book provides another voice that, in addressing two of the most influential intellectual traditions of the past 150 years, widens the debate still further to examine the foundations of psychology.
David Pavon-Cuellar is a professor in the Faculty of Psychology at the Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolas de Hidalgo, Morelia, Mexico. He is a member of the Discourse Unit and belongs to the Editorial Boards of Annual Review of Critical Psychology, Psychotherapy and Politics International, Teoria y Critica de la Psicologia and Revista Marxismos: Educacion, Politica y Sociedad.
Preface. Introduction: in or against psychology? 1. Marxian Psychologies 2. Marx and Freud 3. From psychoanalysis to psychologisation 4. Psychology and its critique in Marxism 5. Marxist Psychologies 6. Marxism, psychoanalysis and critique of psychology 7. Towards a Critical Metapsychology 8. Critique as praxis