Reason Vs. Passion

In both Antigone and Introductory Lectures on Pyscho-Analysis, the struggle of reason versus passion is a theme that is very prevalent throughout. In Antigone, Antigone finds herself struggling between whether to follow the reason of the time and just remain a submissive woman, or to defy order form the king and give her brother a proper burial (Sophocles, 5.45-68). In Freud’s lectures, the struggle of “reason versus passion” is represented by the difference between the super-ego, the part of human personality that makes decisions based on reason, and the id, the part of personality that only acts based on desires (Freud, 12). According to evidence from Antigone and Introductory Lectures on Pyscho-Analysis, in order to be a well-rounded individual, once must have an equal balance of reason and passion.

A representation of how a person who uses too much reason is destined to fail. Here, there is a woman who is flooded by monsters because of her reason and logic (de Goya). Ismene also ends up paying the ultimate price for her reason. “So she will die. Has it really been decided? Yes. By you and me.” (Sophocles, 27.576-577). Due to her reason to stay a subserviant woman, Ismene was unable to stop the death of her sister
An example of how passion for one’s loyalty will cause people to act against what is logical. In this piece, there is the funeral of an Inca leader, despite objection by the new rule (Montero). This leader, Atahualpa, was put to death in disgrace after being captured by the Spanish (Kubler, 424). A very similar situation happens in Antigone when Antigone decides to follow her passion and bury her brother despite Creon saying he should be left out in dishonor (Sophocles, 5.45-46).
A portrayal of the Oedipus complex. Here, there is a painting of Oedipus engaging in sexual relations with his own mother (Philpot). Freud theorizes that the Oedipus complex begins at birth when a boy breast feeds. “At the time at which the child’s mother becomes his love-object the psychical work of repression has already begun in him,” (Freud, 409). Although the child may not realize it at the time, by allowing his mother to become his “love object”, he is giving into his passion and instinct as a human, which allows repression to begin.
An example of perversion. In this painting, there are two naked women embracing and kissing each other (Schiele). This is a perversion that Freud describes as “inversion”, or homosexuality (Freud, 377). Being that this is a perversion, it becomes a cause of neurosis. “I have said that the neurotic symptoms are substitutes for sexual satisfaction,” (Freud, 381). By giving into this perversion, one would be giving into their passion, and would therefore fall to neurosis.
A sculpture to represent how one must find balance in their life between reason and passion. Here, we see a man trying to find balance between the two things that he holds in his hands (Fredericks). In Freud, it is revealed that strong reason from the ego and super-ego causes repression (Freud, 369). In Antigone, Antigone dies because of her passions to bury her brother (Sophocles, 54.1221-1222). Because of these two pieces of evidence, it is clear that a balance must be found between reason and passion, or the id and the super-ego, or else one will face dire consequences.
An image of the figures of wisdom and reason. In this artwork, we the see the figures of wisdom and reason as women dressed in clothes that allows one of the breasts to be exposed (Testa). This is an interesting representation of how reason and passion can sometimes get disorganized and included together.
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