Sigmund Freud coined the terms Id, Superego and Ego in 1923 and the terms are responsible for a different aspect of a person’s psyche or mindset. “The id is the seething cauldron of basic drives in their primitive, selfish, unorganized state” (Parker 123). Id is very instinctive and is responsible for a person’s biological needs which includes sexual urges and repressions, and responds directly and immediately to instincts. “At the opposite end of the spectrum, the superego is the moralizing conscience, with its rules and sense of right and wrong” (Parker 123). Superego aims for perfection and strives to work in a socially acceptable manner that was usually taught by the parents and one’s culture. Superego usually works in direct contradiction of the id portion of the psyche. “Meanwhile, the ego is the realist organizer and planner that mediates between the id and the superego” (Parker 123). Ego is defensive, executive and the intellectual part of the human psyche. When utilizing a psychoanalytic critique of “Young Goodman Brown”, various examples of the different aspects and facets of the human psyche are readily evident. Goodman Brown is affected by each different aspect at different times in the text in a variety of situations wi...
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... of destruction via losing his Puritan belief. In psychoanalytic terms, “Young Goodman Brown” is about the defeat of the id by the ego and the superego.
In conclusion, Goodman Brown is overcome with grief at the loss of his “Faith” and the apparent defeat of his id by his ego and superego. Goodman Brown is a story about a man’s struggle to resist the evil of the Devil and his apparent break from reality at the end of the story. Ultimately, Brown’s reasonable side of his psyche or the superego and ego overcome Browns more basic, instinctive urges and he resists the witches Sabbath ritual and the Devil’s evil. Goodman Browns sanity is broken at the end of the story and the reader is made unaware if the journey through the woods, meeting the devil and trying to rescue Faith from the Witches Sabbath, was in fact a dream, a break from reality or in fact actually happened.
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