Hitchcock’s Psycho and Phoenix. James’ The Turn of the Screw

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The human body and mind are the most complex and intricate tools known to man. The connection between the two are remarkable, the way body feels pain and the mind is able to understand from where and how the pain is being formed, the way the body lags and drops when the mind does not have enough sleep and rest. Most curiously, it is the way our body and mind speak to each other without really knowing. It is the uncomfortable feeling in your chest, the tenseness of your shoulders and the goose-bumps on your arms that are the very basics of human intuition. Intuition is knowing something without having a logical or reasonable explanation to follow the feeling. But it is when our intuition overcomes our ability to think that we become paranoid; constantly looking over our shoulders, noticing people and objects that were never noticed before, and having this retching feeling that someone is out to get you. Paranoia is a thought process where anxiety and fear accumulate to the point where the person suffers from irritation and delusions. It is often developed through an inner guilty conscience which threatens the self. It is that exact tingling sensation in your stomach, the tightness in your throat and the eerie feeling that you are being watched that makes James and Hitchcock's pieces realistically fantastical. The alternate worlds illustrated in these pieces are not of those of dreams and fairy tales, nor those people superheroes or chimeras, but a realist world, where the minds of the characters are exposed and the only source of reliability. James depicts a young woman who struggles to be a heroine for her wards, only to be torn between the lines of sanity as she questions the existence of two ghosts, while Hitchcock’s psycho can ...

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... come across a police officer following them, Marion continues to do the opposite of normal in her frazzled state. Much like how Marion’s paranoia develops once she is in her car, Norman’s paranoia intensifies and becomes much more evident within his first, and continuous encounters with people. In meeting his first, and only, customer for the night, Norman becomes edgy and nervous and constantly tries to engage Marion in conversation. Knowing fully well that his mother would disapprove of such interactions, Norman becomes protective, obsessive and deranged at the mention of his sick mother. Norman’s sickness combined with his obvious paranoia of people coming around him and his “mother” only leads to him committing several murders all being blamed on his mother. This sickness that each character suffers from can only leads to a greater downfall; obvious insanity.

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