Thursday, June 30, 2011

Erikson’s Stages of Development Part 8:

The final stage that Erikson had was for ages 65 years and onward. This is the Ego Integrity vs. Despair stage and is characterized by the question “Have I lived a full life?”

At this stage people tend to slow down and their productivity slows as well. They take more time to reflect on the past both accomplishments and mistakes. If the person sees themselves as leading a successful life they develop integrity. If, on the other hand, they see themselves as being unproductive they develop a sense of despair. This feeling of despair often leads to depression and hopelessness.

In class today we talked a little about cancer patients and terminally ill patients. It is interesting to see how perspective ends when we know or feel we know our life is coming to an end. We often go through different stages which can happen in different order or not at all. These stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.  Once again it is important to note that not everyone follows this pattern at death.

This leads me to think about our characters when they are heading into imminent danger. Think about the stages that they are going through and how they are feeling. How do they react? I like to look at Frodo for this as he is heading to Mordor. He goes through these stages and often repeats them as he begins to understand more his mission and duty.


  1. At first I wanted to argue that Erikson was off on his years. I mean, come one, 65? Most people don't even retire until they are in their 60s nowadays. But then I got to thinking about how the average life span is only in the 70s. That isn't that far off from 65? And as is mentioned in the post, even Frodo, a young hobbit of 60-something, goes through this stage. I like thinking about the fact that there are times all of us feel old and wonder if we have lived a full life.

  2. I am past that age(not telling what age) and over the last 8 years have travelled many times abroad, Lived in Spain and N. Ireland, have had a book published, made many friends through writing my blog .......and I atill got dreams .
    I may have family problems but they can sort themselves out. Life is for living and my favourite qoutation is "Todays Gratitude Buys You Tomorrow's Happiness". Age is just a number.

  3. Interesting! As you mentioned, the signs of this stage do come up in characters when they're headed into danger--Frodo's a great example.

  4. you can see this very evident in nursing homes...those that stay active and those that cannot...circumstances that happen to characters as well can drive this stage

  5. Welcome to my blog renate I hope that you enjoy it and I appreciate your perspective and hope that you will share it often.


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