Chapter 8 discusses the stages of lifelong psychosocial development proposed by Erik Erikson.

Discuss which stage YOU are currently in. Describe the stage and the “crisis” associated with it. How are you experiencing this stage? Does it match Erikson’s view of this stage? What influence on your CURRENT stage did the PREVIOUS stages of your life have (e.g., childhood, adolescent, etc. stages)? Are you feeling the “leftovers” of any previous unresolved crisis (in Erikson’s terms)? Or, on the contrary, are you feeling that successfully going through earlier stages set you up for success later in life?

Choose TWO other people to discuss: one who is currently in an EARLIER stage than you and one in a LATER stage. (You can pick your parent(s), grandparent(s), child(ren), nieces/nephews, sibling(s), cousins, family friends, etc. for this part.) For EACH person, discuss which of Erikson’s stages he/she is in, describe the stage, discuss which side of the “crisis” the person is on (for example, if you know a young child who is encouraged to be independent and curious, you can say she is on the “autonomy” side of the autonomy vs. shame and doubt stage).

Based on the three people to whom you applied Erikson’s theory (yourself and two others), discuss whether you think that the theory is doing a good job in describing lifelong psychosocial human development.