The grandiose self, described and developed as a normal narcissistic configuration by Heinz Kohut in 1971 in The Analysis of the Self, corresponds to or replaces the "purified pleasure-ego" posited by Sigmund Freud: The subject, center of the world, expels what is unpleasurable and preserves what is pleasurable. In theory, the instinctual grandiose self is integrated into the self to form the nucleus of the ambitions (strivings), but it cannot constitute itself or be the object of fixations, repression, or splitting.
The grandiose self, also called the narcissistic self, first appeared in Kohut's work in 1964. A description of an aspect of the narcissistic personality, it acquired a metaspychological status in Kohut's 1971 book.
From a developmental point of view, the infant attempts to restore narcissistic perfection by establishing narcissistic configurations, among them the grandiose self, a structure invested with energy that is rooted in exhibitionist part-instincts. In narcissistic pathology, the activity of the grandiose self explains the intensity of the demand for attention; if it is repressed, no source is available to nourish the reality-ego, which is characterized by a lack of self-esteem, feelings of inferiority, and a tendency toward depression. In Kohut's The Restoration of the Self (1977), the grandiose self is the pole of the self that draws its strength from the self objects' responses to mirroring needs.
The notion is related to mirror transference.
Initially instinctual, the grandiose self was desexualized with Kohut's generalized self psychology advanced in 1977.
See also: Self psychology.
Kohut, Heinz. (1971). The analysis of the self. New York: International Universities Press, 1971.
——. (1977). The restoration of the self. New York: International Universities Press
"Grandiose Self." International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis. . Encyclopedia.com. (March 19, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/psychology/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/grandiose-self
"Grandiose Self." International Dictionary of Psychoanalysis. . Retrieved March 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/psychology/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/grandiose-self
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.