Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences

Living Edition
| Editors: Virgil Zeigler-Hill, Todd K. Shackelford

Unconscious Personality Processes

  • Dianna T. KennyEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_1852-1



Unconscious personality processes are a subset of unconscious processes that occur in human information processing in the areas of affect, attitudes, cognition, memory, and skilled motor sequences. While all these processes affect personality development, it is the relational unconscious comprising unconscious affects, cognitions, and memories that encodes the nature and quality of our early relationships that most directly affects our adult personality, adjustment, and relationships.

Introduction: The Concept of the Unconscious

The concept of the unconscious is a cornerstone of the psychoanalytic edifice, yet Freud experienced great resistance to the acceptance of the role of the unconscious in human behavior because it challenged the cherished notion of free will. Freud stated:

…human megalomania will have suffered [a]…wounding blow from...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of SydneySydneyAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Catherine Cottrell
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Social SciencesNew College of FloridaSarasotaUSA