Michael Hollinger's Naked Lunch Essay

1091 Words 5 Pages
The professors who composed Psychological Science explain that, “For [Sigmund] Freud, the powerful forces that drive behavior were often in conflict. A key aspect of his thinking was that we are typically unaware of those forces or their conflicts” (Gazzinga et al. 570). To Freud, conflicts in the mind consisted of the never ending battle between the ego, id, and superego. The “id” is the mechanism that drives humans to seek pleasure and avoid pain. The superego is a person’s conscience and morality principle. The “ego” is the mediator between the superego and id. In fact, Freud developed a theory based on analyzing these unconscious struggles which he called the psychoanalytic, sometimes psychodynamic, theory. He recorded peoples’ words …show more content…
In “Naked Lunch,” Vernon does not show aspects of the superego altering his actions, but Lucy’s actions are very much reliant on this principle. For example, when the non-verbal cue of “(Pause. Lucy picks up her corn again, guiding him back to the story)” is projected, Lucy’s conscious takes over in order to keep a sense of civility in their conversation and to avoid a possible argument (Hollinger 857). In addition, as Lucy and Vernon converse, Lucy confesses that she transitioned into vegetarianism “since we, you know. Broke up” (Hollinger 857). The way in which Lucy adds “you know” into this statement evokes hesitation and a certain sense of guilt. She could feel guilty about the breakup which implies that she was the initiator of the split, or she is hesitating in order to soften the reality of the two still being separated. Later in the conversation about vegetarianism, Lucy admits that the reason she stopped eating meat was that “[she] decided [she] didn’t want to eat anything with a face” (Hollinger 857). Morally, eating meat can be considered both right or wrong depending on the person. To Lucy, eating a substance that once possessed a face is against her own superego and judgment of what is acceptable. The superego ultimately deals with the moral standards of each individual and endlessly battles against the id for control of the subconscious mind. Another of the unconscious mechanisms Freud uses to analyze the unconscious is

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