The abandonment of the theory of trauma in 1897 was a trauma for Freud himself, who was led to "despair", and possibly reacted with an overemphasis on inner fantasies and drive theory. In a way, today we are facing a second trauma in the history of psychoanalysis: we might call it the "abandonment of drive theory", i.e., human beings strive not primarily to reduce drives but rather in order to seek objects, assign meanings, and assimilate new schemas. The current challenge is a revision of the psychoanalytic theory of motivation based on converging evidence from cognitive science, ethology, infant research, and psychotherapy research. Among the many models currently suggested in contemporary psychoanalysis, Weiss & Sampson’s "Control-Mastery Theory" is discussed in light of cognitive science and evolutionary epistemology: namely, within the frame of the 1960 classic by Miller, Galanter & Pribram Plans and Structure of Behavior, Edelman’s neurobiological theory, and Bowlby’s attachment theory.
Keywords: Control-Mastery Theory; Psychotherapy integration; Psychoanalytic theory; Cognitive-evolutionary psychology; Gerald Edelman