The Sociopath In American

Powerful Essays
An Investigation of the Sociopath and the Psychopath in American Literature and Film American media today is flooded with the use of the sociopath as a main character, and for a liable reason; they’re charismatic, manipulative, powerful, and have an extremely different personality than most people. They’re charming and entertaining to watch, so it is a logical choice for authors and producers alike to use sociopaths and psychopaths as leading characters. Many of the most popular television shows, films, and books in American culture today feature a morally corrupted and, often times, cruel main character. However, this contradicts the personality of most American citizens and it is likely that if faced with a sociopathic or psychopathic…show more content…
Anthony Burgess’s A Clockwork Orange follows the story of a teenage boy named Alex. In his free time, Alex enjoys raping, breaking into houses, and beating up other people. He feels no empathy for these other people, no remorse for what he does, and thinks very highly of himself. Before he is taken into custody by the government for extensive and somewhat cruel treatment for his violent behavior, Alex makes the remarks: “I see what is right and approve, but I do what is wrong,” and “But what I do I do because I like to do” (Burgess,…show more content…
They are left to fend for themselves and try to recreate a small, boyish society. There are two boys in particular, Jack and Roger, which display sociopathic and psychopathic personality traits respectively. Jack is a manipulative yet organized young boy that persuades others trapped on the island to join his tribe of hunters—a group of boys that rejected the want for civilized structure and rules and instead devote their time to killing animals for pleasure. At the beginning of the novel, clues about Jack’s sociopathy are given when he torments the smaller kids for his own amusement. By the end of the book, Jack has organized a hunt for the only boy left that has not joined his tribe and has the intent to kill him. Roger displays more of a psychopathic personality; he kills whenever he can, and finds extreme amusement in causing harm to others. At one point, Roger intentionally throws a boulder down onto another child and kills him. Roger’s thirst for blood is his dominant characteristic and he displays very little personality other than his wish to kill. Although Jack did display a want to hurt other children, he was never impulsive like Roger and often used the other children to carry out his wishes through
Get Access