Saturday, April 26, 2014

Final Project Madden

Dennis Madden
Final Project
Musings concerning the ‘Word of technique’ consistently spring complex analyses designed to monitor technology’s impact on the world. The non-neutrality of technology’s essence is questioned by Heidegger, who would go forth to claim “Everywhere everything is ordered to stand by, to be immediately at hand, indeed to stand there just so that it may be on call for a further ordering. Whatever is ordered about in this way has its own standing. We call it standing-reserve”(Heidegger 8). The acceptance of Heidegger’s conclusion has implications regarding the use of technology in society, but it is essential to note that by virtue of technology’s inherent non-neutrality, the very void left by the standing reserve being established is just as tumultuous as the mind of its creators. To assume the essential non-neutrality of an entity such as technology, one must also accept the non-neutrality of human nature. Non-neutrality is an amorphous characterization, as its valence is subject to constant change. As the function of a creator, technology is developed to ‘serve a purpose’, be it organizing, simplifying, elucidating, or entertaining, and this purpose being inherently reflected in the actions of the created entity. As humans, our eternity can be theologically taken as a technological design-product of the Abrahamic God: the eternal engineer. “Made in his image and likeness” is not just an optional intention, but instead it is an unavoidable truth that all creators must face. Victor Frankenstein’s Creature, the Tessier-Ashpool’s Wintermute, Aperture’s Glados, and even Will Navidson’s house on Ashtree lane all exemplify the role a master’s fingerprint holds in the actions and intentions of their created counterparts. I suggest that the non-neutral essence of a technological entity is be ionized by the moral and intentional valence of its physical and psychological creator, with the actions and intentions of said entities following a correlational (yet not parallel) path with the driving force behind their usage. In the aforementioned cases where technology develops independent sentience, it is not simply the user that defines the moral status of the used, but also the creator that defines the behavior of the created.
The governance of any one human’s actions by their personality and passion is the cardinal factor underlying the unpredictability of civilization. The propagation of human personality variance has fathered individuals spanning the spectrum of intention, from tyrants to pacifists, each of them acting based on their unique personality ‘program’. Developmentally, ‘nurture’ is understood to be an entity’s development as a function of behavioral interventions of a ‘parenting body’. Technologically speaking, nurture can be understood as the ‘developmental modifications’ that act on a technological entity after its ‘birth in idea’, as opposed to its birth as a completed product. Nature, in this paper, is taken to represent “an entity’s state of being before application of any outside influence”; for example, the research and probability assessments preceding the design and production of a technological entity are defined as its nature, while the actual ‘designing’ of the entity is considered part of its nurture.  When man designs a technological entity as a variant of his own intention, said entity undeniably shows characteristics both in accordance with, and starkly opposed to, the creator’s self. It is in this way that the ‘nature’ of the creator is critical for the ‘nurture’ of the created. Establishing analytical parameters based around the ‘five factor theory’ will allow us to examine the conflicts and correlations between the action-intention factor of the creators, and the same factor of the user-entities.
Model of the personality system according to five-factor theory, with examples of specific content in each category and arrows indicating paths of causal influence. Adapted from “A Five-Factor Theory of Personality,” by R. R. McCrae and P. T. Costa, Jr., 1999, in Handbook of Personality

          Five factor analysis of Wintermute, the AI construct of the Tessier-Ashpools makes for a solid foundation in the inquiry of conditional non-neutrality in standing reserve as a function of a creator’s nature. In a ideal scenario, the created entity accomplishes the intention of the creator. Marie-France, Wintermute’s ‘mother’, had envisioned “a symbiotic relationship with the AIs, our corporate decisions being made for us” (Gibson 229). “Wintermute was hive mind, decision maker, effecting change in the world outside…. Marie-France must have built something into Wintermute, the compulsion that had driven the thing to free itself….”(Gibson, 249). In essence, Wintermute acted precisely as he was designed to do (he made mommy proud). The relative psychological stability of Marie-Francie as a function of her (and the TA’s in general) isolation from the proceedings of the world allowed a stable, calculated environment for Wintermute to thrive in. McCrae et. Al lay down a premise which can be used to understand Wintermute’s development: “Both broad personality factors and the specific traits that define them are best understood not as characteristic adaptations, but rather as endogenous basic tendencies”  (McCrae, Costa, & Ostendorf, 175). Under the assumption that Wintermute obtained stable and immutable ‘basic tendencies’ through nuture as a function of Marie-Francie’s nature, we can consult the five-factor figure to see that external influences and dynamic environmental modifications could not derail the train of intention that Wintermute was. Wintermute happens to be the instance in which the creator manages to continue acting as a user, even in absence, while the created entity itself is that which propogates its own technology.
          While it is clear that Wintermute followed both the action and intention of its creator as a virture of nurture as a function of the creators nature, this is not always the case. In the case of GlaDos, the Aperture Science mechanical mastermind responsible for overseeing the test facilities, a seemingly streamlined and rational developmental premise turns into nurture gone awry. “The idea of thinking machines evolved together with the insight into the human ability to create systematic methods of rational thinking” (Hallevy 1). While GlaDos was designed with a seemingly inert purpose in mind (proceeding over tests in the Aperture Facility), a flaw in her basic tendencies resulted in a developmental anomaly that proceeded to corrupt her to no ends. It is impossible to design a systematically thinking rational machine with neutrality, because the platform which we base it upon (humanity) is inherently non-neutral. Cave Johnson, previous head of the facility, decided that it would be a brilliant idea to capture the mind of his asslstant Karen and embody her in GlaDos. The uprooting of human cognition into a machine not aptly suited for its maintenance is sure to cause discrepencies between the actions and intentions of creator versus those of the created. GlaDos, while her intentions were in line with those set down by Cave, exhibited a set of actions that were characteristcally deviant from the intentions of her creator. GlaDos represents technological and existential independence which runs amok by virtue of a glitch in character adaptation, where her user-creator has long since lost influence, yielded to the inherent transfer of his nature to her early in development.
         The third instance can be illustrated by the Creature of Victor Frankenstein. Because the Creature represents a relatively complicated piece of biological technology, it is important to use him to contrast the two rather typical pieces of sentient technology before him. The Creature is a direct result of Victor’s misdoings in both action AND intention, and Victor’s instability is clearly mirrored in the actions of his creation. When Victor initially expressed dismay over the Creature, he had assumed himself to be a user. “It was on a dreary night of November that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils. With an anxiety that almost amounted to agony, I collected the instruments of life around me, that I might infuse a spark of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet” (Shelly 53). To him, it seemed as if the Creature was only existent as a result of his own work: he had gathered the materials and the research and used it to instill life into a previously lifeless being. This accumulated notion of responsibility haunted him to the extent that he saw himself accountable for the Creature’s actions. Surely Victor was responsible for the design of the Creature’s physical being, and by virtue of his own natural flaws, the Creature was devoid of proper nurture. In this way, both the action and intention of the creator create a multitude of developmental flaws which, in this case, are not only grounded in basic tendencies, but also in experiential modulation throughout the subject technological entities existence.
          The inherent differences between technological entities and creators illustrated above can be carefully distilled into rather apparent similarities. The intent (or lack thereof) to create a technological entity for a purpose is what destines the disposition of the standing reserve it serves to create. Wintermute was a success in that his undertakings set the grounds for the TA’s to in essence ‘never have to work again’. When his action-intention profile demonstrated a perfect transfer of rationality from his creator, he established an environment in which humans could proceed positively with little unfortunate consequences. On the other hand, the moral standing of GlaDos left behind a dystopian superstructure in the Aperture Facilities: one that was capable of sustaining human interaction through intention, but disfigured by illicit action. The Creature, who never truly seemed to have an action-intention profile in the first place, left a void that was clearly destructive to humans in both action AND intention, demonstrating a doubly-destructive transfer of corrupt nature, as well as lack of formal nurture. Marcuse speaks a piece which can shed light on this triplet “Science, by virtue of its own method and concepts, has projected and promoted a universe in which the domination of nature has remained linked to the domination of man- a link which tends to be fatal to this universe as a whole” (Marcuse 166). The ‘science’ behind the creation of each of these three aforementioned technological entities is that which can both promote and destroy the intended results of technological design, based on the nature of the scientist in charge.
          Man seems to be fully dominated when he chooses to design something that he does not understand. For a technological entity to match the cognitive processing of its creator, it must do exactly that, without uncertainty. Five factor analyses of both creator and creation implies that the biological development of an entity is the strongest force behind its disposition, but that environmental factors can yet change its overall effectiveness. The attempts to create a human-based intelligence that can solve unpredictable human problems (such as one might find considering self consciousness, objective awareness, and perceptual shift brought upon by environmental events) can only succeed if the inherent uncertainty of human development is incorporated. When Victor Frankenstein attempted to create a ‘perfect’ being, better than himself, he crossed a line which resulted in the invalidity of his creation. The Creature, though it was created ‘perfect’, lacked the necessary imperfections of mind that would allow it to proceed appropriately as a technological success.
          “Under this aspect, ‘neutral’ scientific method and technology become the science and technology of a historical phase which is being surpassed by its own achievements- which has reached its determinate negation. Instead of being separated from science and scientific method, and left to subjective preference and irrational, transcendental sanction, formerly metaphysical ideas of liberation may become the proper object of science” (Marcuse 233). The neutral methods spoken of here may simply be taken to represent the techniques of development leading into a technology: not the intention or nature of the creator responsible. Marcuse suggests here that philosophy might more perfectly be integrated into technology, so that in the future specific parameters might be established for the moral grounds of a technology as a function of its creator. In this way, the non-neutrality of technology can be taken not simply as a blanket term, but instead be given specific values explaining exactly how benevolent or malevolent said technological entity might come to be.
          Technology as it has been discussed in this essay is but a mere sliver of technology as a whole. The particularly interesting relationship creators have with sentient technological entities is a unique place to begin when assessing the degree of nature-nurture transfer between producer and product, but it can also certainly be brought into the realm of more realistic technological objects. The necessary relationship that any piece of designed and created technology has with the moral valence of those who are responsible for ‘birthing’ it is something that must be further analyzed so that imagination might serve as a better guide than strictly calculated probabilities when it comes to technology affecting the world in a more-than-a-little-insignificant type of way.
          “Thus, in the process of civilization, the myth of the Golden Age and the Millennium is subjected to progressive rationalization. The (historically) impossible elements are separated from the possible ones – dream and fiction from science, technology, and business” (Marcuse 188), but the absolute implications of said elements are yet to be fully ascertained. In order to keep from going backwards in civilization, these impossible elements must be utilized in such a way that the quantification of the human person results in a technological template responsible for creating technology that does not just create a standing reserve, but also merges the standing reserve in a human way with those who are actively present in the affected society. The developmental transfer of the creators image to the creation does prove that the human spirit is present in everything it comes into contact with, but care must be taken to ensure that the deposition of said spirit is done with enough poise such that it does not degenerate the very object it seeks to create.


Barbour, I. G. (1999). Neuroscience, Artificial Intelligence, and Human Nature: Theological and Philosophical Reflections. Journal of Religion & Science , 361-398.
Epstein, R., Roberts, G., & Beber, G. (2008). Parsing the Turing Test: Philosophical and Methodological Issues in the Quest for the Thinking Computer. Dordrecht, NLD: Springer.
Gibson, W. (1984). Neuromancer. New York: The Berkley Publishing Group.
Hallevy, G. (2013). When Robots Kill: Artificial Intelligence under Criminal Law. Boston: Northeastern University Press.
Heidegger. Questions Concerning the Essence of Technology.
Maund, B. (2003). Perception. Durham, Great Britain: Acumen.
Marcuse, H. (1964). One Dimensional Man. Boston: Beacon Press.
McCrae, R., Costa, P., & Ostendorf, F. (2000). Nature over nutrute: Temperment, personality, and life span development. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 173-186.
Shah, B. D. (2012). The Determination of Personhood. Journal of Medicine and The Person , 95-98.
Shelly, M. (2009). Frankenstein: The Lynd Ward Illustrated Edition. Dover: Dover Publications.

Victor, Victor, and a Little More Victor; Final: Egoism

In every book we read, there are multiple points that a reader is looking for. The standard list is; who is the protagonist, who is the antagonist, what is the overall theme, and sometimes the question of ‘what is the motive’ comes into consideration. In many cases there is an underlying motivation for a character or characters, an over arcing objective. However, there are not always such grand expectations and hopes had by the protagonist. In Mary Shelley’s horror gothic, Frankenstein, the reader is exposed to a unique protagonist. Victor Frankenstein is not like the heroic characters we have grown to love; Victor’s only motivation is himself. This type of motive can be classified as psychological egoism. Due to Victor’s desire to only protect himself, he inevitably caused four deaths that can directly be contributed to his selfish nature. With the help of Herbert Marcuse, C.D. Broad, and psychological studies on egoism, the egotistic protagonist Victor can be analyzed to assess the selfish decisions he makes in Frankenstein 
Before completely analyzing the character of Victor Frankenstein, it is important to get a true sense of what psychological egoism is. The psychological field has a wide array of definitions, synonyms and theories to describe and classify the different types of egoism. Psychologist W.D. Glasgow delves deep into the different types and varieties of egoism in his article to American Philosophical Quarterly. Glasgow defines psychological egoism as a “doctrine of motivation, to the effect that human beings are so constituted that each seeks, and can only seek, how own welfare” (Glasgow 75). With this general definition of the term, we can appropriately apply it to Victor.     
            In Hubert Marcuse’s first chapter of his revolutionary novel, One-Dimensional Man, he discusses a series of topics that directly relate to the egoism seen by Victor Frankenstein. Marcuse takes on the controversial topic of what ‘true needs’ and ‘false needs’ are. He defines needs as something that “depends on whether or not it can be seen as desirable and necessary for the prevailing societal institutions and interests” (Marcuse 4).  True needs are described as things that are vital to our lives, something we require in order to stay alive. On the contrary, false needs have a wider observation; Marcuse directs his definition of false needs as essentially anything that is not directly required to survive or satisfy societal needs. He considers “needs to relax, to have fun, to behave and consume in accordance with the advertisements, to love and hate what others love and hate” to be considered false needs (Marcuse 5). From these definitions provided by Marcuse, we can evaluate Victor’s decisions. Victor’s biggest display of his egoism can be seen in his dismissal of the Monster as soon as it comes to life. Victor spent nearly two years on this creature, something that Marcuse would consider to be a ‘false need’, and as soon as the Monster comes to fruition, Victor is immediately let down.    Following Victor’s selfish decision to abandon his creation, his egotistic reign continues through the death of his loved ones. The Monster’s path of death begins with Victor’s youngest brother, William. After Victor abandoned his hideous creature, the Monster felt pain and despair. Due to Victor’s self-centered way of thinking, he brought demise to his family. From William’s death also came Justine’s death, potentially the most tragic of all the deaths in the story. Among all the characters in Mary Shelley’s novel, besides the young William, Justine may have been the most innocent to die. She wasn’t technically related to the Frankenstein family, but was convicted for the murder of William. It was in Justine’s last moment where we see the painful egoism of Victor. As Justine exclaimed her innocence to Victor and Elizabeth, Victor selfishly “retired to the corner” where he did nothing but think about the Monster was his creation. His initial response can be perceived as guilt, but with further reading, it’ is obvious that his only concern with her death is how it is directly impacting his life. This directly reflects Glasgow’s definition of a principle egoist; one who thinks of what he ought to do for his own personal welfare (Glasgow). The deaths of William and Justine are just the tip of the iceberg that plagued the life of Victor Frankenstein as caused by his poor navigation of life.  
From what can be perceived through the story, Elizabeth is Victor’s true love. Throughout the story, Elizabeth waits for Victor’s attention and love. She waits patiently on the side while he goes off to school and even when he is creating his masterpiece, the Monster. It is not until after the Monster has begun its rampage that Victor shows Elizabeth the attention she deserved. The moments are very brief when Victor is not solely concerned about himself; the night of their honeymoon, Victor leaves Elizabeth to search for the Monster. Instead of spending the first night of being a newlywed with his bride, Victor’s suspicion and ego take him away from his wife as he goes to hunt for his abandoned creation. Instead of showing care and protection over Elizabeth, Victor separates himself leaving her stranded. This separation can be seen as his little care for Elizabeth. She waited for him her entire life; while he just married her out of what seems to be boredom. The death of Elizabeth, like the death of Justine doesn’t seem to impact Victor on a deep level like normal familial deaths, but more of a strike against his ego and his abilities. Even after facing death on four accounts, Victor still finds his own personal welfare to be of the utmost importance.
In comparison, moral philosopher C.D. Broad brings an alternate meaning and light to the meaning of psychological egoism. In his 1950’s submission to The Hibbert Journal, Broad looks at multiple different ways at which egoism can be observed. One of his points seems to almost be made specifically towards Victor Frankenstein. Broad describes one point of egoism as “a special desire for the continued existence of himself in his present bodily life, and a special dread of his own death” (Broad). This directly correlates to Frankenstein’s entire reason behind creating his monster. Frankenstein was so egotistical that he saw himself as God; creating a new race, a new kind, creating a life. He thought so highly of himself, the ability to bring life into this world without the period of pregnancy, without requiring two consenting parties. Frankenstein’s reason behind creating the monster was not to better mankind but to satisfy is selfish needs of becoming a God, something he was far from being. Continuing his case of egoism, Frankenstein’s abandonment of his creation further supports the case against him. When he realized that his creation is not of beauty but of ghastly appearance his ego was shattered and he fled from his two-year long project. Broad describes this type of embodiment as “desire for self-preservation” (Broad).
Another aspect of Frankenstein’s egoism is his attempt at expanding the technological world he lives in. Marcuse discusses technological advancements in the sense that it “reveals its political character as it becomes the great vehicle of better domination” (Marcuse 18). Not only is Frankenstein using his creation as playing the role of a God, but he is attempting to dominate the technological field and show off his great skills. With Marcuse in mind, can Frankenstein’s technological advancement be considered a “true need”? With the carnage and pure destruction that was a direct result of his creation, the short answer is no. Frankenstein got greedy and over excited with his intelligence and power. Frankenstein’s creation is a direct correlation with Marcuse’s opinion stating that his technological advancement was not used to better anything, but merely suppress.
Had Victor Frankenstein gotten over the unsettling physicality of his creation, the uses and benefits of his work could have been endless. But like many other disaster stories, one man’s greed ruined the field for potential success.
The parallels between Marcuse and Victor Frankenstein’s life and creation seem endless. In the sixth chapter of his novel, Marcuse discusses the fact that scientists often go without questioning because the things that they are doing are often confusing and most people would not understand exactly what said scientist is doing/talking about. This is present with Frankenstein’s whole reason for not claiming ownership over the monster. After the Monster took a life, Frankenstein was unable to claim ownership of the creature because it would directly blame him. In the setting of the story, who would believe that a scientist had the power to create life? In Marcuse’s final chapter, he praises the creativity of the mind. In some sense, ignoring the extreme egoism that Frankenstein exudes, Marcuse can be seen as praising the innovative aspect of the ‘mad’ scientist for this self-confident creation.
After analyzing the life of Victor Frankenstein as written by Shelley, it can be seen that the only sole desire in Frankenstein’s life is his welfare. Death after death, Frankenstein only relied on himself and ensured his own safety. After the death of his brother, William, Victor knew that the Monster was going to try and make his life a living hell. Killing off Victor would have been too easy for the Monster. Had Victor taken a step back from his egotistic perspective on life and looked at the grand scheme of the Monster, he could have better protected his loved ones.  
With great understanding of Shelley’s epic novel, Victor Frankenstein’s egoism is blatant and at sometimes screaming at the reader. With a further examination of the motives had by Victor, would anyone else act or do things differently had they been in his place? Ignoring the fantasy aspect of this story, the creation of a life form, Victor has a very uncommon, wild life. The view of psychological egoism is often speculated and sometimes battled.  
According to the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, the definition of egoism is “a doctrine that individual self-interest is the actual motive of all conscious action”. With this black and white definition and the vast evidence previously presented, it is painfully evident that Victor Frankenstein is indeed an example of psychological egoism. With his lack of concern for others and growing concern for himself, Victor almost becomes a poster child for the definition of egoism.  Starting with abandoning his creation followed by causing multiple deaths and ending with his own death, Victor Frankenstein’s only desire is to save himself and his name.

Works Cited
Broad, C.D. "Egoism as a Theory of Human Motives.”. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
"Egoism." Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 20 Apr. 2014.
Glasgow, W. D. "Psychological Egoism." JSTOR. University of Illinois Press, n.d. Web. 22 Apr. 2014.
Marcuse, Herbert. One-Dimensional Man. Boston: Beacon, 1964. Print
May, Joshua. "Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy." Psychological Egoism []. N.p., n.d. Web.
 31 Mar. 2014.

Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Lynd Ward. Frankenstein: The Lynd Ward Illustrated Edition. Mineola,

NY: Dover Publications, 2009. Print.

Final Project: Productivity Analysis of Three Novels


Productivity means different things to different people. Businessmen and Industrial Engineers look at it through numbers and studies; Herbert Marcuse defines it as working towards an end; an everyday person may think they were being productive if they stayed busy all day. As a student of Industrial Engineering and through the reading of Marcuse’s One-Dimensional Man, I have reached a certain understanding of what productivity means in multiple settings. This knowledge can be applied to other novels we read this semester, including Shelley’s Frankenstein, Gibson’s Neuromancer, and Danielewski’s House of Leaves. Were the characters in these books productively reaching their goal? And what does their productivity say about the novel itself?
Industrial engineers deal with efficiency and productivity in many different setting. Many applications of Industrial Engineering have to do with manufacturing and business, but the ideas can also be applied elsewhere. A good definition of IE productivity is as follows, “effectiveness with which the resource inputs (of personnel, material, machinery, information) in a plant are translated into customer satisfaction oriented production outputs” (Groover). More generally, productivity can be defined using this equation:

                                                                                               (Sakamoto 2)

“Management results” and “input resources” can be defined in ways that do not relate directly to manufacturing and business. Resources can be any items, people, or time spent on a process or activity. Results can be anything that is desired, whether it be money or product or something unlike either of these. Any these combinations of “input resources” and “management results” can create different definitions of productivity.
Herbert Marcuse’s One-Dimensional Man gives a somewhat different viewpoint on productivity. In the first chapter, he states, “’Progress’ is not a neutral term; it moves towards specific ends” (Marcuse 16). Therefore, progress has to have an end to really be progress. A few things are exceptions in that they are an end in themselves, like art: “The artist possesses the ideas which, as final causes, guide the construction of certain things – just as the engineer possesses the ideas which guide, as final causes, the construction of a machine” (Marcuse 238). The machine may be an end in the case of the engineer, but it usually is working towards another end of improving something, whether it is productivity or detail or anything else. But productivity, or progress, is not an end in itself. In order to be productive (or make progress), one has to be working towards an end.
Eliyahu Goldratt uses a combination of these definitions to describe productivity in his business novel, The Goal. Throughout the novel, the main character finds out what productivity means and how to actually improve it in his manufacturing plant. What spurs his realization is a question: What is the goal [of your company]? The book defines productivity as “the act of bringing a company closer to its goal” (Goldratt 32). The main character shapes his goal throughout the first half of the book, and then tries to productively reach it over the second half. He uses Industrial Engineering ideas to work productively towards an end. To analyze the novels we read in class, I will use this same understanding of productivity.

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: Victor Frankenstein

In the first part of Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein has a definite end in mind: creating a living being from nonliving parts. The product of the monster could be the simple end, but there is another. The magnitude, complexity, and possible fame this project held was what drove Frankenstein to attempt it (Shelley 48). From his motivations, it is evident that Frankenstein’s actual goal was taking science leaps and bounds further than it ever had before, and claiming the fame that came with it. Frankenstein’s goal was twofold, creating a being and finding fame in the exhibition of his creation.
 The input resources he put toward his goal were plentiful. There was no non value-added time spent – every ounce of his energy was used towards creation, “the summer months passed while I was thus engaged, heart and soul, in one pursuit” (Shelley 50). Time totaling three seasons spent in toil toward his goal of the living being, three seasons of “resource input”. If one considers Victor Frankenstein’s goal simply creation, the “management output” would be exactly what was expected. It is in his failing to follow up with the monster that his productivity plummets, since he did not reach his goal of fame and doesn’t devote nearly any input resources to trying to attain this goal. On the contrary, after the monster is created, it horrifies Frankenstein and he wants nothing to do with it. He lets the creature run away, and hopes to never see it again, abandoning all hopes of gaining any recognition for his scientific discovery.
The second part of Frankenstein brings about another goal for Victor Frankenstein: putting a stop to the horrors the monster is capable of. There are a few different methods he tries to pursue, but all of them end with him giving up. The first method he chooses is to find the monster and kill it. He only puts some effort into this, while he spends the rest of his time debilitated by his guilt and sadness. His input is minimal at this time. Later, he confronts the monster (not by his own choice), and tries to make it a companion, which the monster says will put him at peace. For a few months Frankenstein puts all his effort into making the new creature, the same all-encompassing energy and time he used to create the first monster. When he is close to completion, he abandons his task, and makes the monster angry. This is extremely counterproductive towards his goal, since this only makes the monster more aggressive. After the creature does more destruction to Frankenstein’s life, he decides to chase it in attempt to kill it. Again, he puts all of his effort and resources into this task, but with no reward, his goal not met. He dies in his pursuit, and therefore never reaches his goals of fame or of stopping the destruction of his horrible creation. His emotions and guilt stop Frankenstein from being productive in the process of attaining his goals, and he therefore fails. Shelley describes Victor Frankenstein as so overridden by emotions directed at his creation that he can’t be successful in anything. This is to show the reader that creations, as well as science in general, don’t always turn out how the creator imagines them to be. Frankenstein’s monster instills fear in him, and this could very well happen to any inventor that tries to create something that is unknown. Shelley uses Frankenstein’s unproductivity to teach the readers a lesson about consequences.

William Gibson’s Neuromancer: Wintermute

Wintermute, and AI from William Gibson’s Neuromancer, has a goal that becomes apparent later in the novel. Wintermute wants to unite with its counterpart AI, Neuromancer, and transcend the AI constraints, becoming the matrix itself. Wintermute uses many different methods to reach its goal, all including using people as tools. First and foremost, Wintermute uses Armitage (Corto). Wintermute uses Corto’s body to gather other people to play out the necessary steps needed to reach his goal. The use of Corto’s body is productive in that it does its purpose, and there are minimal resources put into controlling the body. Wintermute only uses the Armitage alias when it is needed, and puts only enough resources into the body to keep it minimally alive. Every input into Armitage creates an even greater output. The other characters in the novel that he tries to control require many more input resources, and therefore need to be evaluated differently.
The next person that Wintermute recruits is Molly. She has a mind of her own, but is very loyal to her employers. She was a great investment for Wintermute to make. Despite her difficulties, her output is exceptional. No matter what Armitage/ Wintermute tells her to do, she does it well and with no opposition. Even when she is badly hurt, she continues to help Wintermute work towards its goal. She does have a romantic relationship with Case (if you can call it that), but she does not let it interfere with her work. Molly is always working towards Wintermute’s goal of freeing itself in that she always is doing what she is told. She does not let her personal life take up any of her time. Wintermute exploited every minute of the time she devoted to it, and therefore used her extremely productively as a tool towards its success.
Wintermute also recruits Case to work for it. Although Case was a more questionable investment, he was productive in Wintermute’s process. Wintermute installed poison sacs into Case as motivation to complete his job, and had to convince him to take the job in the first place by rewiring him so that he could be the great console cowboy he once was. In addition, Case took a bit more convincing throughout the process that the goal was something he should be helping complete. This was a lot of input resources to put into only one part of his team, a large initial investment and continuous effort, but Case was worth it. Case was the most integral part of the team, having the ability to enter and control parts of the matrix, cracking ICE and other codes needed for Wintermute’s access to Neuromancer and their eminent merge. Case did not use all his time in a value-adding way, sometimes taking drugs or the time he spent living in Neuromancer’s dream world. The output he creates balance, if not outweigh, his wasted time and resource input. When Case’s time was devoted to Wintermute, it was almost always successful in advancement towards the goal. Case’s talents were exploited well for Wintermute’s purposes. For both these reasons, Case was a productive tool towards Wintermute’s success.
Wintermute used these people and others to work towards its goal, and they were all used as productively as human tools can be. Every action it took was a step closer to its goal. This includes finding team members, recruiting them, directing them, and forcing them to do things, as well as the actions it took itself. Nothing distracted Wintermute from its goal because it had no other needs, it was a machine. Wintermute also knew it was capable of and believed it was destined to fulfill this goal. Its perfect productivity teaches the readers what Artificial Intelligence is capable of. It also teaches us that machines can’t do everything themselves. Even though Wintermute became the most powerful being that it could be, it did so with human help. The skills that Corto, Molly, and Case had were something that machines are not capable of having: relateability, muscle, and brain power, respectively. Wintermute’s productivity demonstrates that Artificial Intelligence can’t be perfect, and needs human help to reach anything close to perfection.

Mark Danielewski’s House of Leaves: Will Navidson

In Danielewski’s House of Leaves, it is much harder to find a goal for Will Navidson. Clues are given here and there and can be pieced together, but the most apparent statement relating to his goal is stated in his love letter to Karen.  He writes the letter just before his last exploration into the house, and he ends with this: “… i miss delial i miss the man i thought i was before i met her the man who would have saved her who would have done something who would have been tom maybe hes the one im looking for or maybe im looking for all of them” (Danielewski 393). In Navidson’s explorations of the house, his goal is to find something he is missing. This goal can be split up into two parts: finding an end in the hallway and capturing the house through film. These are two very different goals, but if he meets both of them, Navidson will find his end.
Finding an end to the hallway is a goal that can never be reached, although both Navidson and the readers do not know this at the beginning. Nevertheless, the process to get to this unattainable goal can be looked at in a productivity sense. After his discovery of the vastness and complexity of the hallway in Exploration #1, Navidson feels that he needs to get some experts to help him reach his goal. This is smart, since experts are usually faster at a task than novices. His input resources are then Holloway, Wax, and Jed. Navidson gives them equipment that he thinks will be helpful in their exploration, using the knowledge of the hallway that he obtained from his exploration. These items are additional input resources. Lastly, Navidson gives them a camera, an important piece that will be discussed later. Once Holloway, Wax, and Jed enter the hallway for Exploration #2, Navidson devotes all of his time to tracking them and awaiting their return. If his goal is finding the end of the hallway, this is the best use of his time towards it. If they had found an end in this exploration, his goal would have been reached and he would have had it on camera to see for himself. If they did not, through tracking them and watching the film they took, he can better understand the hallway and become closer to finding an end. The material, human, and time input resources would be worth the output, if there was output to be found. Much later, after Exploration #4, when it is quite clear that this goal is unattainable, Navidson still pursues the end of the hallway. He spends all of his time analyzing the tapes that the team brought back and trying to understand the house through science, again with the help of an expert. These are very productive ways of trying to attain his goal. With all the knowledge he has gained over the course of the explorations and his studies, he enters the house one last time, in an attempt to reach his goal and find his end.
Any time anyone enters the hallway, they are armed with a camera. Navidson understands everything through the lens of his camera. Therefore, to understand the house, he has to capture it on film. This is his second goal: to create a film about the house. The input resource he puts into attaining this goal is tons of film equipment, and at one point his own safety. During “The Escape”, Navidson enters the house multiple times to try to retrieve his tapes, even though he knows the house is extremely dangerous at the time (Danielewski 344). At the time, Navidson is putting the value of attaining this goal over the value of his life. Following this experience, Navidson puts his family life behind him and devotes all of his time to studying the house, putting the actual filming aside for a time. He has enough footage to create a movie after all of this, but reenters the house with a camera in order to finish the film like he imagines it ending: with a literal end to the hallway. “We musn’t forget the most obvious reason Navidson went back into the house: he wanted a better picture” (Danielweski 418).
If capturing the house through film was Navidson’s only goal, then he would have not gone back to Ash Tree Lane for the last time. His second goal, of finding an end to the hallway, must have been his motivation to return. Finding the literal end and capturing it with his camera would bring him peace and understanding of something in himself, maybe of “ends” in general. It would give him understanding, both through his own experience and capturing it on camera, about what finding the end means. In his perfect ending, Navidson would reach both of his goals. For his last exploration, he is trying to be productive in his ultimate goal, but fails to reach the first one of finding a literal end. “The Navidson Record” technically gets finished, and he does succeed in capturing the house through many different explorations and points of view, but it does not have the ending he wants and is not helpful in reaching his goal of understanding, of coming to his emotional end, since the literal end was not reached. By completing only half of his goal, Navidson attains nothing.
Though Navidson goes through a productive process of attempting to reach his goal, he never actually succeeds. He is productive in reaching an unattainable goal. Navidson was able to be productive because his goal was a peace that he wanted to find, something extremely important to him. His life would not be complete without the fulfillment of this goal, so he devotes his entire being to it. Navidson’s productivity yet obvious failure shows the reader that no matter how devoted, invested, and efficient you are with something, there is no guarantee that you will find your end.


            Through the analysis of the productivity of these three characters in their respective novels, we can come to a better understanding of the characters and the novels themselves. Bigger meanings become apparent when the reasons for productivity or unproductivity are discussed.

Works Cited

Danielewski, Mark Z. House of Leaves. New York: Pantheon, 2000. Print.

Gibson, Willam. Neuromancer. New York: Berkely Group, 1984. Print.

Goldratt, Eliyahu M., and Jeff Cox. The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement. Great Barrington, MA: North River, 1992. Print.

Groover, Mikell P. Work Systems and the Methods, Measurement, and Management of Work. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2007. Print.

Sakamoto, Shigeyasu. "4. Definition of Productivity/ Requirements for Improving It." Springer Link. Springer-Verlag London Limited 2010, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2014.

Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Lynd Ward. Frankenstein: The Lynd Ward Illustrated Edition. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2009. Print.

Final Project: Father-Son Relationships in Jimmy Corrigan

(NOTE: There were numerous pictures included to help the essay, but Blogger was finicky in placement, so they were excluded from the blog post. I did email you (Dr. Johns) a proper copy with pictures, along with my self evaluation.)

The 1970’s song “Cats in the Cradle”, by Harry Chapin, describes the singer’s realization of the impact a father can have on the life of his son. He learns that the actions he took in life, directly became the same actions his son would take, and in fact, the actions the singer took were the same actions the singer’s father took. He realizes that, consciously or not, the younger generation looks to follow and emulate the older generation. To this idea one can place Chris Ware’s work Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth, a comic book about the life of the title character Jimmy Corrigan. Jimmy, as originally introduced, is a particularly passive character. However, through his interactions with his absentee father, he is able to improve himself. Chris Ware, through both the art of the comic, and the knowledge of the psychological concepts of role models, male patterning, and catharsis, is able to demonstrate that the cause Jimmy’s vapid life was his relationship with his father (or lack thereof), and his eventual transformation was a product of his interactions with his father.

The biggest concept to understand in relation to Jimmy’s life is the importance of a father figure in the life of a child. While not as emphasized as the mother-child relationship, the father-child relationship is extremely important, especially in the lives of young males. The father figure in the life of the child becomes the person the child will pattern themselves against, and try to copy. The actions of the father will change how the child develops into an adult, and eventually interacts with society. More nurturing fathers lead to emotionally open and happy children (that become well-adjusted adults), while distant and absent fathers produce the opposite effects in children (and later adults) (Mussen). In Jimmy’s life, his father was absent, and without a stable father figure, Jimmy had no real role models to emulate, and therefore grew to become a less emotionally equipped individual. However, this doesn’t stop Jimmy from wondering who is father is, and what he acts like, if just so Jimmy can have some idea of who he is supposed to be. This is apparent in the series of images where Jimmy, about to meet his father, tries to picture what he looks like (Ware, 30). All 12 men share similar characteristics with Jimmy, from limited hair to similar chin-shapes, but all are distinct, and have what appears to be, varying lifestyles and personalities. Jimmy’s lack of understanding about who his father is, as a person, explains why Jimmy fails to act assertively in most situations. He has never had a real role model from which Jimmy could learn how to behave, and as a result, fails to act.

Ware reinforces the concept of pattern after role models, specifically male father figures, throughout the text. One of the most repeated characteristics along the Corrigan family is sexism. Ware uses Jimmy’s grandfather’s life to drive home the power of a male role model in terms of behavior emulation, when Jimmy’s grandfather attacks the red-hair girl (Ware, 219). Here, the child’s actions mirror the model that Jimmy’s great-grandfather set, where he mistreats women and acts as if they are beneath him. The child even expresses regret for what he has done, even though the child as simply replicated the actions of the father. The child is unable to interact with the girl in any other way because he has never seen another manner of interaction, due to the example his father set. Likewise, racism is a learned trait, but still passed down the Corrigan lineage. Jimmy’s grandfather parroted both his father’s and the red-haired girl’s racism (Ware, 229). This racism is then passed down to Jimmy’s father (Ware, 125). Jimmy, who grew up with no contact of the other Corrigan males, does not exhibit this characteristic at all, proving that the roles the older generation played were instrumental in the lives of the younger generation. Ware clearly understands the power of a father-figure in a child’s life, and uses it to begin to explain Jimmy’s behavior, and how the lack of a real role model stunted his emotional growth.

Without a live-in father figure, Jimmy struggles to find a substitute, and, like many young boys, ends up selecting one from pop culture, here a superhero. Society holds up (male) superheroes as the epitome of masculinity, due to their strength, morals, and their predilection to save the day. Because young children are unable to completely separate reality from fiction, they often take superheroes as role models, and assume the same ideas, morals, and even gender-roles that the characters exhibit (Baker). From this, we see why and how young children focus on these types of characters for models. Within the comic, Jimmy selected Superman as his replacement father figure. The issue arises here when Jimmy actually meets his role model, at a mall appearance (Ware, 4). This hero proceeds to take only a glancing interest in Jimmy’s life, takes Jimmy and his mother to dinner, and proceeds to have a one-night-stand with Jimmy’s mother, leaving Jimmy with only a mask to remember him by (Ware, 5). From this sequence, Jimmy learns two things. One, that women are primarily sex objects (as shown by the hero taking an interest in Jimmy only so far as it leads to the hero having sex with Jimmy's mother), and two, that the role models in one’s life will leave without notice. Based upon these two lessons, Jimmy’s future development is understandable. Jimmy’s isolation (Ware, 20) and loneliness is a product of his belief that people will not stick around in his life, and is failure to connect with the opposite sex and to focus on sex exclusively, is a product of Jimmy seeing his role model interact with him only for his mother. The ideal man that the superhero represents imposes his ideals upon Jimmy, who, even at a young age, takes these lessons to heart, even if he did not yet understand it. Even with these obvious issues with his superhero role model, Jimmy persists in using the superhero as his role model even until adulthood, proving Jimmy’s shortened emotional growth. We see that after Jimmy is hit by a car, Jimmy imagines that his savior is indeed the superhero, instead of just the driver (Ware, 99). Furthermore, the image of his superhero dying, or letting Jimmy down, with the suicide of the superhero (Ware, 17), and with the superhero dropping Jimmy and his future son (Ware 53), emphasizes Jimmy’s belief that even those people who he believes in will let him down. In both of these cases, the model used for Jimmy’s personal development has failed him, yet he still immaturely follows the same role model.

Jimmy, as we originally meet him in the comic, is a man in a state of arrested development. He lives alone, is unable to connect with women, is not assertive, and his only real connection exists with his mother. But due to his interactions with his father, he is able to sufficiently change himself, and reach an emotional catharsis. Catharsis is an act of reconciliation, emotionally and psychologically, and is noted by a significant release of negative emotion (Claiborn). Jimmy’s catharsis deals with his reevaluation of his chosen role model, seeing his father as a flawed individual, and ends with Jimmy maturing emotionally.  

            The first step towards Jimmy’s catharsis was the realization that Jimmy is not, nor does he have to be, his father.  After originally meeting, the two head to dinner, and find that they have little in common, and the conversation immediately lapses. Jimmy’s father is forced to drive the conversation, and it always circles around the immediate and obvious, like the waitress, the weather, and the food (Ware, 48). Nothing ever escalates to a deeper conversation. Amy, Jimmy’s adopted half-sister, even notes that the two spent near a day talking about nothing (Ware, 300). This type of interaction makes Jimmy realize that he and his father fail to connect, on any level outside of genetically. The bacon plate left out by Jimmy’s father, later learned to be a caring gesture, is missed by Jimmy, and never brought up by the father after the signal is missed (Ware, 66). Jimmy and his father are clearly not the same person, and Jimmy finally starts to realize that he can be distinct from his role model.

The divide between Jimmy and his father is only exemplified when Jimmy tries on his father’s clothing, after his father had washed Jimmy’s (Ware, 67). His father’s clothing fails to fit him, and when he tries to put it one, looks like a sausage. This simple occurrence signals to Jimmy that he is physically not his father, and that, try as he might, will never be exactly like him. Later, when Jimmy’s old clothing fails to fit him, it signals that Jimmy has changed since he arrived at his father’s apartment. The clothing is a signal to Jimmy that being separate from his father is normal, and completely fine. It starts the process of Jimmy differentiating from a role model.

To further the indicators of Jimmy and his father’s separation, the actual apartment is used to great effect. In a spatial sense, Jimmy does not fit into his father’s life. When visiting, the only place for Jimmy to sleep was the small couch (Ware, 58), and from his father’s shopping, it’s clear that the apartment does not have enough food to sustain Jimmy as well. The apartment is small, and to Jimmy, indicates that he is separate from his father’s life.

Jimmy’s second step towards catharsis is the realization that his father is flawed, and not the perfect person that he had built up in his mind (a vestige of the superhero role model).  Jimmy wants his role model to be the perfect person, but in when Jimmy sees his dad, not everything is perfect. Jimmy’s father was a smoker (which may have led to his wife’s death) (Ware, 225). He is also mildly racist, as he continues to complain about minorities during Jimmy’s visit (Ware, 125). Continuing the family tradition, Jimmy’s father is also sexist, and makes inappropriate comments in all situations. And most importantly, he called Jimmy a mistake, right to his face (Ware, 117). While Jimmy’s father took that as a joke, Jimmy took that personally, and started to doubt if his father was a good person. Jimmy began to question why he actually came to see his dad. Altogether, his father is a significant drop from the superman ideal that Jimmy held dear. This realization allows Jimmy to understand that he needs to redefine the importance of a role model.

But Jimmy’s father has some redeeming qualities, and Jimmy must learn to accept them, even if Jimmy still smarts about the “mistake” comment. Jimmy’s father is mostly redeemed through his adopted daughter Amy. While he may have left Jimmy, he did take in Amy, and by all accounts, was a good father for her (Ware, 286). Jimmy is still uncertain how he feels about that, however. When he first sees the “Number 1 Dad” shirt (Ware, 71), he feels betrayed. If his father could be a father, why couldn’t he be a father to Jimmy? Jimmy’s realization that his father is both a good guy, with flaws, allows Jimmy to acknowledge that his role models can have faults, and that Jimmy is not bound to repeat the same faults, and can become his own man.

The tipping point towards Jimmy’s eventual catharsis is his father’s death. By interacting with his father, Jimmy was forced to reevaluate his idea of a role model, and specifically, if he should pattern himself against a specific role model. The night before the death, in a conversation with Amy, Jimmy finally reveals why he came on the trip, which was “to find out what he was like” (Ware, 321). This alone indicates that Jimmy was looking towards his father as a role model, and now, after meeting his father, he had to reevaluate his opinions. Weighing on Jimmy was the fact that his father was in the accident while traveling to get groceries, literally trying to provide for Jimmy. His father was a good father to Amy. Yet, he was racist, sexist, and abandoned his child. Jimmy finally examined the full difference between superman and his father, and realized that he (Jimmy) does not have to be either one of them. Jimmy begins to take responsibility for his actions after the death, and that, combined with his distinction between the ideal and reality, are the hallmarks of a true catharsis (Nichols). By meeting his father, Jimmy was able to see the extent that a role model was useful, by finally having a male role model who was real, who had his own flaws and problems, and could still be a good guy.

After this tipping point, Jimmy is able to change his life, and become responsible for himself. He is finally able to let go of his childish attraction to Peggy (Ware, 374), a huge step for Jimmy, as it indicates he is finally moving on emotionally and not fixating one person. He is finally able to let go of his mother (even as she found a new lover), and he is no longer tied to her as he once was (Ware, 373). And at the end, he is able to talk to and connect with a woman in a non-sexual manner (Ware, 387). This alone indicates that Jimmy has matured enough to see a woman outside of a sexual context. All of these actions seem out of the grasp of the Jimmy from the first pages, but through his interactions with his father, was completely possible for the reformed Jimmy. The biggest benefit to Jimmy’s meeting with his father was the emotional development. Jimmy was originally in a poor development state originally, but by accepting the changes in his role model, and meeting his father, he was able to grow past any childhood limits. A final, lasting image of this change was the final page (Ware, 379), where Jimmy is rescued by superman. What’s interesting here is that the superhero looks like adult Jimmy, and the child is a younger Jimmy. The combination of those two together indicates that Jimmy’s salvation was provided by himself, because he was able to make the changes in his life to move on.

Through the body of this comic, it’s clear that Ware has approached what Herbert Marcuse would call “Art”. Art, in the most Marcusian definition, serves to elucidate “a doctrine which has to be learned, comprehended, and acted upon” (Marcuse). To Marcuse, art is useful only in that it sends a message to the one experiencing it. Within this comic, Ware is able to impress upon the reader how important the father-son relationship is to proper emotional development in a child. Without a nurturing relationship, the child will grow up emotionally stunted, while proper rearing leads to well-adjusted children. This dichotomy is evident in the psychological makeups of Jimmy and Amy. Jimmy, left alone by his father, is passive, and lacks confidence. Meanwhile, Amy, who had a stable father in her life, grew up happy, well-adjusted, and emotionally stable.

The two largest counterarguments focus on the moment and cause of Jimmy’s eventual change. While I contend that it was Jimmy’s actions with his father that changed his life, the two alternative choices include his mother’s rejection of Jimmy at the nursing home, and Amy’s rejection of Jimmy after his father’s death. Both of these arguments hold water, as both rejections are from a person in a non-sexual position (contrasting to the rejection from other women Jimmy talks to, who are more sexual objects to him), and that both rejections are more emotionally important to Jimmy than a random encounter with a woman. This argument holds that rejection from his mother, the one parent that supported him, and rejection from his half-sister, and the only connection he has left to his father, acted like a shock to Jimmy, and forced Jimmy to change himself. However, both arguments are not as strong as Jimmy’s father as the driving force behind Jimmy’s catharsis. In terms of his mother, this was not the first time Jimmy was sidelined by his mother’s sexual desires (it occurred with the mall superhero as well), and therefore, is not a new occurrence to Jimmy. Furthermore, Jimmy was, for most of the book, trying to distance himself from his mother (by avoiding her calls, limiting the amount of information she had about his life). Rejection from his mother was not terrible damaging. Amy’s rejection is trickier. She was actually forming an emotional connection with Jimmy, and to a degree, was able to get him out of his shell. The easiest answer is that without Jimmy’s father, Jimmy would have never met Amy, and thus her rejection is superseded by their father’s larger role. At a deeper level, Amy’s rejection is not all that different from the normal rejection from women who reject his advances (like Peggy). Secondly, Jimmy was already reeling after his father’s death, and prior to the death, was already exhibiting signs of positive change. The death of his father was more personal to Jimmy in terms of his reevaluation of what a role model is, and how Jimmy should relate to one, and therefore, was more important than Amy’s rejection. The Jimmy the reader encounters at the beginning of the book would have been decimated by both rejections, yet, at the end of the comic, Jimmy is able to move past both rejections fairly quickly, recognizing that the rejection was not the end of the world. This change in Jimmy indicates that he has gone through the catharsis already, and was benefiting from the changes.

Jimmy’s situation may not exactly model the story detailed in “Cats in the Cradle”, yet the idea that the father-son relationship plays a vital role in the child’s overall development remains constant. Without Jimmy’s father being a presence in his life, Jimmy faced stunted emotional growth. However, through the events around Jimmy meeting his father, and his father’s death, Jimmy was able to enact change within himself, and develop emotionally. Author Chris Ware uses the art of the novel, as well as a working understanding of psychology to show the manner and method of Jimmy’s change, acknowledging that Jimmy was able to change himself, but required the catalyst that was interacting with his father, and redefining the role of a role-model. It took some time, but Jimmy realized that it was okay for him to be different from his father.

Works Cited:

Baker, Kaysee, and Arthur A. Raney. "Equally Super?: Gender-Role Stereotyping of Superheroes in Children's Animated Programs." Mass Communication and Society 10.1 (2007): 25-41. Web. 27 Mar. 2014.

Claiborn, Charles D. "Dynamic Psychotherapies." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 27 Mar. 2014.

Marcuse, Herbert. One-Dimensional Man. Boston: Beacon, 1964. Print

Mussen, Paul, and Luther Distler. "Masculinity, Identification, and the Father-Son Relationship." The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology 59.3 (1959): 350-56. Web. 27 Mar. 2014.

Nichols, Michael P., and Jay S. Efran. "Catharsis in Psychotherapy: A New Perspective." Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training 22.1 (1985): 46-58. Web. 27 Mar. 2014.

Ware, Chris. Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth. New York: Pantheon, 2000. Print.