Psychoanalytical Criticism of A Clockwork Orange Essay

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Anthony Burgess via Alex DeLarge Psychoanalysis is based on the idea that literature is an extension of the conscious and subconscious mind. In a novel, the emotions of an author are manifested as a story of a protagonist and his world. The protagonist is created as the author’s persona, and the setting of the story parallels events from the author’s past. In Anthony Burgess’s A Clockwork Orange, the protagonist Alex DeLarge is a direct projection of Burgess’s psyche. Analysis of Burgess’s childhood confirms the psychoanalytic theory that Alex and his fictional experiences within A Clockwork Orange are the result of thoughts, fears, and desires that were suppressed by Burgess’s conscious mind throughout his life. Just as Burgess …show more content…
Anthony Burgess’s childhood desire to have a mother and father role model is expressed through Alex’s disregard for his uninvolved parents. Looking deeper into Burgess’s dysfunctional family life, it is evident that the lack of a mother figure in his life affected his feelings toward male adults. Motherly behavior is characteristic of women, and not common in men. Burgess never had a kind male adult in his life, so Alex interacts accordingly: he deals with hostile men and few women. Once waking up at F. Alexander’s house, Alex is surprised by his kindness, and refers to him as a “…kind protecting and like motherly veck (guy)” (Burgess 177). This is the first time that Alex has been treated well by an adult male, so he automatically associates F. Alexander with the word “mother”. The preconceived negativity and disbelief in successful, lasting relationships affects the way Burgess, and Alex, developed socially.
Parental relations are crucial to the normal development of children because it provides them with an example of how to act around others, and what to expect from people. The object relations theory explains Burgess’s reaction to a parentless childhood. “Objects” are internalized images of interaction between child and parent used to predict the social behavior of others. The element of separation between Burgess and his parents was passed on to Alex, and

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