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Critical Essay (Maslow)

  • Submitted by: anonymous
  • on November 12, 2012
  • Category: Psychology
  • Length: 733 words

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The main concept of Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is that people must progress through a set of needs in a certain order.   The hierarchy infers that one is motivated to attend to their fundamental needs first and cannot move on to other so-called advanced needs until the lower needs are satisfied.   Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is often modeled as a pyramid and displays five levels of needs from lowest to highest.   The five needs are as follows:
1. Physiological Needs – Basic needs like water, air, food, shelter, sex and sleep.   According to Maslow all needs can be put on hold up to the time that these instinctive needs are met.
2. Security Needs – The need for protection, a safe place to live, law, order, employment, insurance etc.   These needs are not as demanding as the need to survive.  
3. Social-Love Needs – Relationships, affection, family, community etc.   Maslow felt that these needs were less fundamental than the previous needs.
4. Esteem Needs – Self-Esteem, achievement, independence, prestige, managerial responsibility etc.   After 1, 2, and 3 are met these needs become urgent.
5. Self-Actualization – Realizing personal potential, self-fulfillment, personal growth, less concern with the opinions of others etc.
    The notion that humans are motivated to seek needs in a specific order is an unlikely one.   One can’t help questioning the idea that humans are innately organized in pursuing their needs and that they would adhere to Maslow’s sequence.   Several researchers disagree with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.   There hasn’t been any proof of such a hierarchy as of this writing and it’s very unlikely that there ever will be.   In reference to the order of these needs, is sex really as essential as the need to eat, breathe, or consume water? And if one doesn’t obtain sexual satisfaction along with the other basic needs, will that individual be stuck at that base level until that need is met? According to Maslow, yes. Further, the placement of sex...

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