Freud and Frankenstein
Tracing the development of “id, ego,
super-ego” in Frankenstein
Class 1 周迎
Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)
•
Structural and
Topographical Models
of Personality
Freud's Id, Ego, & Superego
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The Id (“It”—本我,指潜意
识的最深层,无意识的原
始精神能源 ): functions in
the irrational and emotional
part of the mind
•
•
The Ego (“I”—自我,自己):
functions with the rational
part of the mind
•
The Superego (“Over-I”—超
我): the moral part of the
mind
three aspects working
together to produce
all of our complex
behaviors
•
•
•
Id: “want, want, want” /“pleasure principle”
want whatever feels good at the time, with
no consideration for the reality of the
situation
only its own satisfaction, with no
consideration of anyone else
too strong = bound up in self-gratification
and uncaring to others
•
•
socially repressed elements of
Frankenstein
•
his wish for his mother:
replacing his dead mother
Frankenstein’s
creature
double
Frankenstein
•
•
Frankenstein’s creature: comprises of the
unacceptable traits of humans (what humans
suppress, or should suppress) : villainy,
murderous thoughts, revenge, etc
Those traits – Frankenstein had but
suppressed
•
William
•
Elizabeth
•
Elizabeth
•
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Frankenstein’s
Oedipus Complex
- physically like his mother and had a
history like that of his mother
- Frankenstein’s mother took care of
her, but then sickened and died P828
•
Rejecting Elizabeth
Death of Elizabeth
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Monster’s words: I shall be with you on your wedding-night P897
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After receiving the letter from Elizabeth P906
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- The letter revived in my memory what I had before forgotten, the threat of the
fined- “I shall be with you on your wedding-night” P907
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After Frankenstein’s marriage to Elizabeth: in the inn
- She left me, and I continued some time walking up and
down the passages of the house P911
Perhaps deep down Frankenstein wanted to be rid of Elizabeth
•
Super-ego: the human sense of guilt and
conscience
•
Ego ideal: provides rules for good behavior,
and standards of excellence towards which
the Ego must strive
•
Conscience: the rules about what
constitutes bad behavior
too strong = feels guilty all the time,
may even have an insufferably saintly
personality
•
Frankenstein's sense of guilt
•
The violent, aggressive way
Frankenstein creates his monster
•
A fear of the loss of love, the lose of
the source of protection as punishment
for one’s sins
•
After days and nights of incredible labour
and fatigue, I succeeded in discovering the
cause of generation P833
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digging through graveyard at night
dark office
rank odor and filth
•
I collected bones from charnel houses…
•
In a solitary chamber, or rather cell, at the top of the house,
and separated from all the other apartments by a gallery
and staircase, I kept my workshop of filthy creation; my
eyeballs were starting from their sockets in attending to the
details of my employment. The dissecting room and the
slaughter-house furnished many of my materials; and often
did my human nature turn with loathing from my
occupation, whilst, still urged on by an eagerness which
perpetually increased, I brought my work near to a
conclusion. P834
•
•
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horrid situation— unhealthy desire
•
despair
•
•
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his father
Clerval
Elizabeth
If they knew:
Frankenstein=“true
murderer”
•
I thought I saw Elizabeth, in the bloom of
health, walking in the streets of Ingolstadt.
Delighted and surprised, I embraced her;
her features appeared to change, and I
thought that I held the corpse of my dead
mother in my arms…P836
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Revealing Victor's deep-seated fear of
losing his loved ones
References:
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Sigmund Freud- Life and Work
http://www.freudfile.org/
•
Ego, Id, Super-ego
http://peace.saumag.edu/faculty/Kardas/Courses/GPWeiten/C12Person
ality/EgoIDSuper.html
•
Psychoanalytic Criticism and Frankenstein
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/80992/psychoanalytic_critici
sm_and_frankenstein.html
•
•
Freud and Frankenstein: Tracing the Development of the “Super-Ego”
Emily Kay Carson
The Double in Gothic Romance: A Study of The Monk, Frankenstein,
“William Wilson”, The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Aya Yatsugi
Thank you!
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Freud and Frankenstein