Section - 1 INTRODUCTION Definition of Civilization Civilization occurs when a society moves to an advanced state of social development with complex legal, political and religious organizations. There are several definitions for civilization, for instance, 'the people slowly progressed from barbarism to civilization'; 'the quality of excellence in thought and manners and taste'; 'a man of intellectual refinement'; 'humans living together in an organized way'. Freud defines, 'civilization is a process in the service of Eros, whose purpose is to combine single human individuals, and after that families, then races, peoples, and nations into one great unity, the unity of mankind. But man's natural aggressive instinct, the hostility of each against all and of all against each other, opposes this programme of civilization.' Thus, it is clear that civilization means, the change of human behavior from primitive, barbarized state to state of controlled and well-mannered conduct.
Or as Freud brings out, civilization is based on the permanent subjugation of human instincts. In that perspective a civilized man is the one who represses his own natural desires and act according to the established rules, norms, traditions and social order. Definition of Free domIn that context of civilization, primitive man had the freedom of their instinctual life. They could satisfy their natural desires whenever and wherever they wanted, without having the sense of guilt and shame. Animal freedom, which exists in animal kingdom, comes into same terms with human freedom in that stage as human could fulfill their desires as animals do, which is signified by the devoid of a second thought of whether that behavior is 'right' or 'wrong', 'good' or 'bad'. Section - 2 Sigmund Freud's Analysis of Civilization Freud used theories called pleasure principle, reality principle and structure of human psyche in order to bring out the way in which human represses their instincts in their process to civilized state.
Freud likened the mind to an enormous iceberg, of which consciousness is only the small exposed tip. The massive structure of the iceberg that lies beneath the surface is the vast region of the unconsciousness. To Freud unconscious was both a reservoir of instinctual drives and a storehouse of all the thoughts and wishes we conceal from conscious awareness because they cause psychological conflicts. All organic, biological, animal instinctual drives, which are not in control of the human beings, are in this vast region of unconscious. When civilization consciousness develops with the knowledge of physical and social environment, and it enforces the limits and extents to these, primary drives.
Further Freud divided the human psyche into three separate but interacting elements: the id, the ego and the super ego. Freud described the id as a reservoir of psychic energy, the pool of biological drives that arise from our needs for food, water, warmth, sexual gratification, aggression, avoidance of pain, and so forth. And he believed that these drives direct all human behavior. The id is an unconscious force, with no link to objective reality. It seeks one thing only: the discharge of tension arising from biological drives. The id's exclusive devotion to gratification without regard for logic or reason, reality or morality, is called the pleasure principle.
According to Sigmund Freud human beings are essentially biological creatures with strong instincts, one among them is aggression, it as Freud calls: 'an original self subsisting instinctual disposition in man... the greatest impediment to civilization.' At this point the difference between primitive and civilized man arises. Primitive man could satisfy his bodily needs in his id, as it is, whenever and wherever he wanted. Thus he could achieve his freedom fully in his gratification of his primary needs. But even at that age, the ego begins to develop soon after birth and it plays a major role in mediating between the id and reality. And wherever the id operates according to the pleasure principle, the ego operates according to the reality principle: taking in to account past experiences, it seeks the best time to obtain the most pleasure with the least pain or damage to the self.
But with the civilization, when morals and rules come in to practice the role of ego becomes more prominent. The idea of the super ego comes here. The super ego is the component of personality that represents the ideals and moral standards of society as established in the process of socialization of human beings. It works according to the morality principle with reason, circumspection and pride, always efforts to protect the society. It is the voice of conscience that forces the ego to consider not only the real but also the ideal. It constantly commands the sexual and aggressive urges be shifted, and pleasure be postponed in the pursuit of lofty ideals of moral perfection.
It backs these commands with rewards for 'good' behavior (feeling of pride and self esteem) and punishment for even thinking about 'bad' behavior (feeling of guilt and inferiority). And this primal guilt is, according to Freud, the origin of civilization. In this struggle between pleasure principle and reality principle, defense mechanism comes in to forward in its process of blocking harmful impulses and reducing the anxiety, which arise as a result of the struggle between id and superego The most basic defense mechanism is repression: pushing unacceptable id impulses back into the unconscious. Thus, according to Sigmund Freud, this act of repression or subjugation of human instincts happened in the process of civilization. With civilization humans imposes values, norms, rules and orders on themselves thus they act as a barrier in fulfilling human instincts.
When the ego loses the struggle of reconciling the divergent demands of the id and the superego, the reality comes in the form of anxiety. Id impulses are always repressed in order to get rid of this persisting anxiety. In Civilization and its Discontents (1930), Freud argued that civilization itself came about through such a re channeling of primitive drives. What is done there is, displace the forbidden impulses and redirect them toward the pursuit of socially desirable goals. Section - 3 Discussion Thus, in the light of Sigmund Freud's theory of repression, human being is not free enough to fulfill his own desires in his civilized state and always struggle over suppressing his basic instincts.
Organizations such as religion, law, family, politics arise with civilization, establishing more and more rules, orders, norms and traditions. So whenever the id asks for a fulfillment of an instinct, superego imposes social values and orders, which it has learned in the process of socialization by restricting the human's freedom of fulfilling instincts. This changes of instincts is the changes of the mental order in civilization. The animal drives become human instincts under the influence of external forces such as society, family, religion, politics and so forth. Psychoanalysts use concepts as sublimation, projection, repression, displacement, denial to describe the way in which human redirect or repress their primary drives in the civilized society and free from the sense of guilt. For instance, a man who has had many extramarital affairs may begin to accuse his wife of being unfaithful, thereby transferring his own shortcomings to her.
Similarly, people who constantly accuse the young for being sexually promiscuous may simply be projecting their own sexual urges to others. And further sublimation is a kind of displacement in which illicit urges are redirected toward the pursuit of socially desirable form. Freud suggests that Leonardo Da Vinci's urge to paint Madonna was a sublimated expression of his longing for reunion with his mother, from whom he had been separate at an early age. In this manner, it is the society and social order that decide the way in which the primary drives of human is satisfied. With this redirecting and control, animal man becomes a human man who transforms his desires from immediate.