Lit. and Psychoanalysis
FIQWS 10008 and 10108
The Decision Maker
Many people are usually conflicted between two decisions, whether or not to do it. The factors that lead to their decision making or actions are conscious and unconscious. These conscious and unconscious decision makers are called the superego, ego, and id. The concept of the superego, ego, id, and how they affect a person’s behavior is displayed in Freud’s writing, “The Dissection of the Psychical Personality” and the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare. “Hamlet” is a play that focuses on a mission that needs to be accomplished by Hamlet. Hamlet’s father instructs Hamlet to kill his uncle Claudius as an act of revenge for killing him. One of the main characters that are affected by his psyche in the play “Hamlet” is Hamlet. The superego, ego, and id each play a role in Hamlet’s actions and plan to killing his uncle. Hamlet has many opportunities to execute his dad's goal but he does not because of his psyche. The superego and ego changes Hamlet’s mindset and delays his mission of kill his uncle, while his id urges him to murder his uncle.
Hamlet’s ego and superego prevent him from killing his uncle once he found out about his uncle’s wrong doings. The ghost, which is a representation of Hamlet’s dad spirit, tells Hamlet that Claudius was the one who killed him and ask him to seek revenge on Claudius by killing him (Shakespeare, 51-57). So since the id is “striving to bring about the satisfaction of the instinctual needs subject to the observance of the pleasure principle” (Freud, 48), Hamlet has a strong desire to avenge his father by killing his uncle. However, instead of immediately taking action, he takes time to think about what has just happened. The fact that he did not take a sword and murder his uncle is a display of his ego. His ego does not allow him to act vicious because the “ego must observe the external world” (Freud 59). Since Hamlet's ego...
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