The Unconscious Mind In Mary Shelly's Frankenstein

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“During my first experiment [of creating the monster], a kind of enthusiastic frenzy had blinded me to the horror of my employment, my mind was intently fixed on the sequel of my labour, and my eyes were shut to the horror of my proceedings” (Shelly, 2017, p.138).
With these words, Victor Frankenstein in Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein explains to Robert Walton that his unconscious mind (which is influenced by an enthusiastic frenzy) absents his conscious mind from recognizing the severe consequences of his attempt to give a life to the inanimate body. The question poses here is; to what extent does his unconscious mind affect his choices and his relationships with the other characters in the story.
In this paper, I will read Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein
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The Ego is the self-image of the individuals. It places itself between the Id and the Superego trying to find a balance between them (Tyson, 2015). The Superego, on the other hand, is the conscience of the mind that is the self-observing aspect of the Ego. It is the aspects that tell the Ego the right and the wrong. In different words, the Superego measures and judges the decisions that made by both the Id and the Ego (Tyson, 2015). Finally, the Id is located in the unconscious level of the mind and can never separate from it. It always seeks immediate gratification of its desires such as sex, food, power, etc, regardless of whether these desires are socially prohibited or not or whether they are right or wrong. To put it simply, the Id seeks pleasure and has no morality (Tyson, 2015). The id is also where our desires, wounds and painful experiences are kept repressed, some of these emotions and feelings disguise into defines mechanisms (Tyson, 2015).
The Défense Mechanisms
According to Freud, there are a number of defense mechanisms that enable our mind to keep the repressed desires or experiences repressed in our unconscious mind because we want to avoid “knowing what we feel we can’t handle knowing” (Tyson, 2015, p.15). Some of these defence
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This admiration might include his/her cognitive abilities, external appearance, or power. To satisfy this feeling of importance, the person seeks attention and special treatment from other people around him/her (Bergman, Westermann, & Daly, 2010). Furthermore, a person with narcissistic disorder ‘typically disregard[s] other’s rights and feelings and unable to take the perspective of others (Bergman, Westermann, & Daly, 2010, p.119).
Oedipal Conflict
Freud believes that infants of the same gender with his/her parent try to replace the parent of his/her own sex to gain the love and the attention of the parent of the opposite sex (Tyson, 2015).
After these short explanations to some of Freud’s psychoanalysis theories, the paper will now turn to address the use of psychoanalysis in literary criticism.
Psychoanalysis in Literary Criticism
Writing a paper about the Swiss writer Conrad Ferdinand Mayer’s story ‘Die Richterin’ in 1898, Freud started to apply his own findings in psychoanalysis to interpret literary texts. After that article, Freud wrote a number of essays establishing the relationship between psychoanalysis and literature, accordingly, a new theory of literary criticism was born (“Application of Psychoanalysis in Literary Criticism”, n.d.). Freud was interested in how the interpretation of the characters’ motivations in the story can tell us more
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