“Dark Knight” was a smash hit for it’s fame, explosions, and chase scenes, but what really had me on the edge of my seat was perhaps the most riveting villain I had ever seen. The Joker. The Joker is a mob-backed terrorist with suicidal tendencies and a textbook sociopath. He is not reasonable, he’s not afraid of anything, and the last thing he cares about in the world is himself. As Alfred explained to Bruce, “Some men just want to watch the world burn”. Given the tortured nature of our subject, I felt it fitting to call upon Dr. Sigmund Freud to be our expert into the downward spiral that is the personality of this criminal mastermind. Freud is the father of the psychoanalytic theory. He suggests that childhood experiences shape our personalities. To explore his theory, there are Four Questions you will have to ask about a personality theory. The first question regards the structure of the theory. Freud developed a topographical model to explain personality with three separate parts that interact with one another; the id, the ego, and the superego. The id is carnal in nature and embodies our natural drives. They are like our instincts in that we do not consciously think about them. The superego is like our conscious; we internalize social norms and values and our superego is the partially conscious part of our mind that monitors our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. The ego is our mostly conscious awareness that is in the middle of a tug of war between the id and the superego (Robert McEntarffer 174).
The second question asks for the motivation in his theory. Freud introduces the pleasure principle; a self-indulgent notion that we are motivated to seek pleasure and avoid pain. At the root of the id is a primitive energy to seek pleasure (usually of a sexual nature) called the libido. However, lest we become animals, we also have a counterweight in the superego. The superego, according to Freud, has a paternal authority that brings up feelings of guilt...
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