Alfred Adler's Theory of Individual Psychology in the Administration of a Refugee Camp
To apply Alfred Adler's theory of individual psychology to the administration of a refugee camp, it is first necessary to explore his theory.
Alfred Adler's theory of individual psychology encompasses his belief in the uniqueness and indivisibility of every human personality. He did not mean that individuals do not require the social element, for this he considers "all-important. . . . The individual becomes an individual only in a social context. Other systems of psychology make a distinction between what they call individual psychology and social psychology, but for us there is no such distinction" (Ewen 127).
Instead of studying obscure metaphysical constructs and the speculations about the deepest layers of the psyche, Adler's individual psychology prefers to emphasize practical recommendations for dealing with our problems, bringing up children, getting along with others, and upgrading the quality of life in general (Ewen 127). Specifically, Adler argues that human beings have an innate need to relate to others and this "community feeling," or social interest, is comprised of more than simply belonging to a group, it includes a sense of "kinship with humanity" and "enables our physically weak species to survive through cooperation" (Ewen 127). According to Adler, everyone possesses the potential for social interest, but this potential must be consciously developed through "appropriate training for personality to become well adjusted" (Ewen 132).
Adler's theory of individual psychology is complex and, among others, includes such concepts as inferiority/superiority complexes; birth order; masculine protest; organ inferiority; neglect; and pampering. He also expressed a particular interest in the affect of work on one's psyche and was a strong advocate of humane working conditions and protective labor legislation (Ewen 146).