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Personality Development Analytical Essay

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Updated: Apr 25th, 2019

Personality refers to the long lasting traits in an individual. Generally, people tend to evaluate the personalities of human beings around them on a daily basis; this happens consciously or unconsciously.

The difference between psychologists and other individuals, however, is that, whereas we appraise personality informally and focus more on individuals, psychologists employ the usage of personality conceptualizations that possibly applies to all persons. This explains the development of various theories.

Fundamentally, personality may be defined as that which comprises behavioral and trait aspects that tend to distinguish one person from the rest. Therefore, the argument here is that personality comes from within an individual and remains unswerving even as he/she ages.

Generally, there are four basic tenets of personality including Consistency; Psychological construction; Impact Behaviors and Actions, and Multiple Expressions. Personality does influence how people take action to their setting or stimuli, and causes individuals to do or behave in an exacting mode. Multiple expressions on the other hand provide the understanding that the expression of personality does not just occur in behavior, but also in how people think, feel and in their associations with others, as well as in day-to-day interactions.

Sigmund Freud’s Psychosexual Theory

According to Freud’s theory of Psychoanalytic development, a person’s personality appears within the first six years and remains more or less the same over the years. This theory is grounded on the fact that personality and behavior is unconscious and draws back from childhood and sexuality, an aspect he called fixation. He proposes that a child undergoes five stages of human development within the formative years (Friedman & Schustack, 2008).

Freud imagined that sexuality begins when one is very young and goes through what he referred to as fixation. His basic argument is that if these stages are not successfully accomplished and done away with, then people tend to unconsciously maintain them and discharge them later in life as psychological defense mechanisms, so that they unconsciously eliminate anxiety associated with the conflict in abandoning such stages (Allen, 2006).

For instance, oral fixation can have a number of effects, one of them being oral aggressive personality, where one becomes unreasonably aggressive, and antagonistic to the extent of getting to vocally abuse others. Perhaps, this explains why Tina Turner occasionally hauls insults at others. On the other hand, anal fixation brought about by stringent punishment when children undergo toilet training can have a number of effects including ‘The Anal Retentive Personality’.

People who have this sort of personality tend to be very tidy and stubborn, and they tirelessly value perfection (Friedman & Schustack, 2008). Again, perhaps this is the reason Tina Turner has great impatience to non-performers in the music industry and always values fashion and great dress sense; indeed, this may be the reason she ventured on her own. Besides, it could well explain why she is very energetic during her performances on stage.

Eriksson’s Eight Stages of Human Development

Erik Eriksson, in psychodynamic Theory, presents eight stages of human development. The striking thing about this theory is the belief that when one does not fully go or successfully experience a particular stage, then such stage will reoccur later in life, or will define unfulfilment in the latter stages (Friedman & Schustack, 2008).

Accordingly, kids are usually borne with unique temperaments and basic capabilities. Generally, people undergo a number of changes in the process of growing into adulthood and aging.

Eriksson’s each of the stages of human development reckons that the entire psychological predicament associated with each of the stages must be successfully resolved before one takes into the next stage (Friedman & Schustack, 2008). For instance, stage three in Eriksson’s theory, which is ‘’Early Childhood’’ stipulated between ages 2 to 6 and described as ‘’Initiative Versus Guilt’’, can give us a prelude to Tina Turner’s personality and behavior.

According to Eriksson, at this stage, children usually had mastered ‘motor skills’ and therefore they increasingly participate in social interaction. The challenge for children at this stage is that it is imperative for them to strike a balance in their quest for adventure with responsibility.

If this stage is handled well, then children acquire the thinking that some things are wrong to do while also feeling no shame in engaging in independent roles. This perception could be one of the reasons Tina Turner has been very independent to even moving mountains in her musical and acting career path.

Albert Bandura’s Social Learning Theory

This theory posits that human beings learn through three key ways: Observation, Imitation, and Modeling. Bandura notes that people acquire behavior and attitudes by observing how others’ attitudes impact on such behaviors (Cited in Friedman & Schustack, 2008).

The ground is that one forms the idea of behavior and therefore acquires personality through modeling and imitation. Therefore, this theory tends to explain personality and behavior in terms of cognition, behavioral interaction, and environmental influences.

Bandura summarizes personality as formed because of interaction between behavior, the environment and psychological processes such as cognitive abilities (Cited in Cloninger, 2008). His theory brings in, the aspect of cognition and defines it as the individualized worldview; it is a way by which individuals order the world around them (Friedman & Schustack, 2008).

Arguably, perhaps this theory, because of its holistic nature provides a balanced conceptual scheme within which to situate Tina Turner’s personality. That she must have learnt many things in her life and career processes and used her cognition to adapt along.

Summery of Tina Turners Biography, in relation to the aforementioned above Theories

Tina Turner, originally Anna Mae Bullock, has been in the music business for about fifty years, and been very commercially successful even to this day in rock music. She has a powerful voice and energetic on stage besides being incredibly attractive, factors which have contributed immensely to her fame (Anonymous, 2011).

Having been born to a family in the segregated South of America, Tina Turner and her siblings were deserted by their parents, forcing her to live with her grandmother. It was after her grandmother’s death that she moved to St. Louis where she re-united with her biological mother.

It was this that opened the break to be in nightclubs of Rhythm and Blues, and it was in one of those escapades that she displayed her talent for performing on stage upon being invited by Ike Turner and his Kings of Rhythm in 1956. She subsequently changed her career dreams and her name soon changed to Tina Turner from Anna Mae Bullock, when her hit song, a fool in love, gained fame.

She was later married to Ike Turner in Mexico; however, after a number of musical successes where Tina proved domineering, Ike, a wife beater, became so violent forcing Tina to attempt unsuccessful suicide, and eventually moving out of the marriage (Anonymous, 2011). Her domineering spirit might correspond to what may have happened during Sigmund Freud’s phallic stage.

It was then after when she was 40, that she suffered low and devastating experiences in her career and would just perform in hotel Ballrooms and Super Clubs.

However, she has since said this was perhaps the best time of her career because she was able to ‘’put her shows together and execute them herself’’ (Anonymous, 2011). This development presents her as an independent person, a trait that corresponds to Erickson’s third stage of human development.

However, her explanation for having dropped in terms of fame and moneymaking is a defense mechanism and can fall in the category Freud calls Rationalization. That, she did not contest for a divorce settlement from Ike, even though she was in big debt having failed a number of promoters and fled the group Revue, brings her out as a forging person, while repression as a defense mechanism comes into play.

She did later, in 1980, having featured in Olivia Newton-John Hollywood Nights TV, impressed upon Newton-John’s management to bring her onboard. The explanation here psychologically is that she must have learnt from her previous mistakes and therefore the model of Social Learning comes in handy.

It was after this that her profile took a higher note upward rise, and her performances with Red Stewart and the Rolling Stones introduced her to rock market, which she had dreamt of pursuing. Later, she was to release a number of albums and singles, which were great hits and sold millions in America, Europe and the rest of the world. It was based on this that she received notable awards and increased her fame.

In deed after this time, her successes had even been all the time enormous and have been an actress in a number of movies including ‘Mad Max beyond Thunderstorms’ in 1995. Here, she received the highest accolade in American Artistry by receiving the Kennedy Centre Honors; thus, ‘’Tina Tuner is the undisputed King of Rock’’ (Anonymous, 2011)


Psychological Models and theories have been used over time and are important in evaluating and attributing behavior and personality. For Tina Turner, there seems to be no specific model that summarizes her personality. Instead, a number of models apply to Tina Turner.


Allen, B. (2006). Personality Theories: Development, Growth, and Diversity. Boston: Pearson/Allyn & Bacon.

Anonymous. (2011). Mini Biography: Tina Turner. Retrieved from .

Cloninger, S. (2008). Theories of Personality: Understanding Persons. NJ: Prentice Hall.

Friedman, H., & Schustack, M. (2001). Personality: Classic Theories and Modern Research. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

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