Freud


He is peeping through a small hole, from which a light comes out and shows his expression. Is it an expression of pleasure? No, it looks like pain he feels. But his eyes are looking so lusty in desire, he is masturbating. I have never seen an expression like this, he is both taking sexual pleasure and feeling a deep pain, plus he seems to be afraid of a mother who might catch him masturbating; he is in such a hurry. But that’s ridiculous, he is a grown up, why would a man be afraid of his mother? Why would a man have to hide himself while satisfying himself? Such traces of fear and shame can only be seen on the face of a child caught by his mother in the middle of self pleasure.


There are traces in that facial expression of Norman Bates of nightmares that Freud describes in his psychoanalysis theories. These are the nightmares which we somehow learn, accept and respect; but which we never dare to emphatize ourselves with. Sigmund Freud talks about the preferably hidden, forbidden and carved mysteries of the human psychology, one of which is deeply reflected in Norman Bates’ twisted face. There is pleasure; first from the act of self-satisfaction and then from secretly experiencing something forbidden. There is fear; both from being noticed by the object of pleasure (Marion Crane) and from being caught by the authoritarian mother. And there is shame on that face, contrasting with the hungry eyes. The motive behind the combination of these contrasting feelings should in fact be searched for in the labyrinths of Freudian psycho-analysis. Freud likes to explain every attribute of human behavior from the early memories and experiences of childhood, focusing single-mindedly on sexuality and aggression. So, what can be the motive behind such a confused expression in the presence of sexual pleasure of masturbation?


At this point, Freud would ask for the case history of our patient. Although vague, we have information on very critical incidents in Norman Bates’ life. He is the son of a motel manageress, living far from the town without a father. Here, Freud would come up with the idea of “lack of authoritarian father figure”, which, according to his theories, is a reason for the underdevelopment of superego in the subject’s personality. In order to support this thought of Freud’s, the lack of the system of values in Norman Bates may be given as a reference; peeping through to a motel client’s bathroom is not a widely accepted value (of course murdering a mother and many women is out of question). Moreover, added to this traumatic basis in the child’s psychology is the incident of his mother’s and her lover’s death; on the same bed; pierced by the bullets from a pistol held by Norman Bates. This terrible incident may give us clues why sexual pleasure is an experience that has to be kept hidden, as the child mind links the two incidents: sex and death, and therefore develops a conditional reflex even towards his own bodily pleasures.


However, here, Freud would not be satisfied with these plane explanations; he would come forth with a serious but proud face and start a long conference by explaining that this destructive trauma, given the prior consequences added, should have caused much deeper wounds in the subject’s mind. Then he would go on this conference with the details of his famous psychoanalysis; the psycho-sexual development phases of human personality. According to him, there are five phases in the first eleven years of life, in each of which there are certain factors in operation that are essential in psychological development. One of these, the phallic phase (between 2 to 6 years) is the phase of utmost importance. In this phase the famous Oedipus Complex takes place during child’s first experience of sexual identification, sexual pleasure and masturbation. Sigmund Freud drew this term from the myth of Oedipus. (Freud describes the source of this complex in his Introductory Lectures (Twenty-First Lecture): "You all know the Greek legend of King Oedipus, who was destined by fate to kill his father and take his mother to wife, who did everything possible to escape the oracle\'s decree and punished himself by blinding when he learned that he had