Psychoanalytic Criticism In The Road By Cormac Mccarthy

2060 Words9 Pages
The Road by Cormac Mccarthy is a grim, terrifying story about the future of America. The world is destroyed after an unknown catastrophe. A man and his son, seemingly the only survivors, trek through the barren land searching for food and trying to survive. They find groups of savages along the way and are almost killed numerous times. One of the best ways to look at McCarthy’s work is through a psychoanalytic lense. This type of lense allows readers to look through a window into the author’s mind and discover what they really meant. Author Snezana Djuric puts it this way “Psychoanalytic criticism tells about how a work is formed and about the meaning of that formation” (Djurić 4). Psychoanalysis provides a deeper reasoning underneath the words…show more content…
An article written by Victoria Hoyle addresses the mentality of the man in the novel. There are a few glimpses readers catch that insinuate the man’s longing for something just out of reach. The man needs something, anything, that he can rely and depend on and he knows he won’t find it on earth or with humanity. The man needs a higher power to look to for advice and guidance. At night he stands "Eyes closed, arms soaring", searching for "something nameless in the night, lode or matrix. To which he and the stars were common satellites" (McCarthy 13). The man sees what has become of the world and what humans have turned into and hopes there is something more than this or above this. However, at some points, it’s admitted about him that “beauty and goodness are things he 'd no longer any way to think about", suggesting that he doesn’t have faith in what he’s looking for. (McCarthy 61) It’s been discussed before that the man in the story could possibly be a Christ figure. He lays himself down to protect the boy time after time. However, it seems to many others that the boy is more comparable to Christ. Throughout the novel, the boy carries a burden with him, the death of his mother. Yet, the boy insists on helping people that have hurt, or meant to hurt, him and his father. For example, the incident with the thief that stole their belongings when they leave their camp on the beach. They find the thief and the man takes all…show more content…
Growing up, everything around him was decaying. Everytime he and his father set out to find food, his father always had the gun out, ready to kill. The father often handed the boy the gun and instructed him how to take his own life if they were to get in trouble. The boy grew up without a mother and now walks the barren, deserted streets littered with the dead with his father, trying not to die themselves. This would be hard to handle for an adult, let alone a child. Readers can understand and see that the boy’s constant state of fear is justified time after

More about Psychoanalytic Criticism In The Road By Cormac Mccarthy

Open Document