In his book Civilization and Its Disconnections, Sigmund Freud examines how unhappy humans can be. Freud acknowledges nature as a force that, historically, has overpowered human nature. It’s strange that humans are dissatisfied despite the fact that technological improvements have increased our influence over nature. In addition to nature’s vast powers, humans are cruel to one another. According to the book, Freud argues that when humans are not part of a civilization, they appear happier. The necessity for civilization, on the other hand, appears to be imperative. “Human life is only possible when a majority comes together that is stronger than any single individual,” says Freud. This majority then develops its own set of ideals, which are judged “right,” while everyone who disagrees is simply “wrong.” Freud then explains next that the community then restricts themselves whereas the individual does not.
In our weekly activity, we explored the negative effects civilization has on individuals. To summarize, the individual’s strength is surrendered for the group’s power, liberty, and freedom are eroded, and people are pushed to reject their instincts and restrain their sexuality. This, I believe, is just a few of the many ways in which civilizations bring harm to others. According to Sigmund Freud, civilization arose from two concepts: “Eros” and “Ananke,” which translate to “love” and “necessity.” I believe that if the law served its intended purpose, society could provide a secure haven for human nature. However, I believe Freud is correct in asserting that government is inherently repressive of human nature. I believe that all persons are unique individuals with distinct beliefs, instincts, and sexuality. However, I believe that Western civilization has created a generic society that does not fully support individualism, resulting in repression. In some ways, I believe this aligns with Young’s idea of powerlessness oppressing individuals. These individuals, as young states, lack authority and do not regularly participate in making decisions that affect the conditions of their lives.