A Developmental Study of Alex in Kubrick\'s A Clockwork Orange

Synopsis of A Clockwork Orange

In A Clockwork Orange, the main character is that of a mildly young
child of 15 who, along with his fellow friends, or "Droogs", partake in evenings
of Ultra-Violence. Ultra Violence consists of random beatings, theft,
destruction, and rape. The main character, Alex, is the self-proclaimed leader
of the pack, and makes judgment on their actions pending on his mood. His Droogs
eventually find themselves under his direct rule, following his every word, and
decide to challenge his authority.
The three Droogs (Dim, Georgie, and Pete) join Alex on his romp to a
local "fat farm" to pillage the goods therein. Inside, Alex stumbles upon the
owner of the resort, and after a length scuffle with her, ends up giving her a
blow to the head with a rather large, ceramic replica of an erect penis. When he
leaves the outer gates of the complex, Dim surprises him by smacking a milk
bottle against his face. His counterparts escape while little Alex is left
bleeding and blinded to deal with the police.
Upon interrogation of Alex, he discovers that the blow he delivered to
the young lady was a fatal one. He is charged with first-degree murder and
sentenced to 14 years in prison. While there, he befriends the resident minister
and becomes a helper to his service. The minister, Alex soon discovers, is a
part in a new form of treatment that is trying to be implemented prisons to
help "cure" inmates from committing acts of violence. Through luck and
discussion with the higher officials in the prison, Alex is chose to be a guinea
pig for the experiment, and is sent to become "inoculated from violence".
The treatment consisted of Alex being strapped down to a chair in front
of a cinema screen, having electrodes attached to his head, and being kept
focused by small pairs of clamps used to disable his ability to blink. This,
along with the injection of an experimental serum, is monitored whilst he views
movies of UltraViolence. The serum leaves him vulnerable to his surroundings,
which are destructive films, and induces such feelings of helplessness, fear,
and near-death paralysis, similar to that of drowning. Alex soon associates this
feeling of distraught with the violence, and with the background music being
played throughout the entire ordeal: Beethoven, Alex\'s main love. The final
result is that whenever Alex is confronted with either violent acts of any kind,
or the sweet strings of Ludwig Van, he is soon on his knees in pain and agony.
When he is released, his parents abandon him. He meets up with a few
members of his old gang that have turned into crooked cops, and with their
newfound power and long-lasting loathe of Alex, they beat him much and leave him
for dead, this of which brought on the sickness that he was conditioned for.
Stumbling in the dark for help, he comes across a polite looking residence that
looked vaguely familiar. Eventually, Alex realizes that he is in the presence of
a former victim of his, but believes that the owner would not recognize him.
To his dismay, the author did recognize him after hearing Alex sing a
song in a very similar fashion to the way his attackers did 2 years ago. After
slipping a sedative into Alex\'s wine, Alex wakes up to find himself in a locked
room on the second floor of an apartment high-rise. Through the floorboards,
Alex starts to hear the hateful sounds of Beethoven, and goes into his sickness
fits. No exits, No escapes. His only way out is to jump out of the closed window
and end his life. He does just that.
Alex wakes in a hospital. The author was jailed for attempted murder,
and the government officials that started the program were ridiculed and
harassed out of their positions. Alex finds himself broken and hurt, but his
thoughts are that of the Ultra-Violence. Alex was cured and ready to live again.

Aspects of Psychology

In A Clockwork Orange, Alex is portrayed as two different people living
within the same body. As a mischievous child raping the world, he as seen as
filth. His actions and blatant disrespect towards society are categorized under
that of the common street bum. However, when he is away from his evening attire,
he is that of suave. His clothing, his words, his overall attitude. The
distinction between the two is triggered by the gentle sounds of Ludwig Van
The psychology of Alex would be that of a serial killer. He