Saturday, December 13, 2008
Pooh Psychological Disorders
Today I was watching the Winnie the Pooh Christmas special, and I couldn't stop thinking about something I heard about in college: Characters in Winnie the Pooh each exhibit some sort of psychological disorder.
Now, I don't suspect that the book and series was created with this idea in mind, but when psychologically analyzing each character, I do think that each one clearly has a disorder that can be diagnosed based on their behaviors.
This was apparent when I was watching the special today. They are each so quirky and odd in their own way. That's what makes them so popular. They're great characters. But this can come along with a little analyzation.
Psychologists with the Canadian Medical Association wrote an interesting piece which can be read at this website. Their findings are extremely interesting to check out.
This website also offers links to other websites and articles on the topic.
Here is what I found from these websites:
Christopher Robin: Since Christopher Robin creates all of these characters in his mind, these characters represent feelings he is experiencing in his internal world. As a child, he is learning how to socially function and interact with the external world. Each character could represent a different reaction or feeling within himself as he learns to cope and deal with that extra world. The essay by Alan Bennett, from a website above, writes, "These different feeling states, the positions of the developing ego/self come to represent the characters, or, I should say that the 'Winnie-the-Pooh' characters come to represent the positions of the self in Christopher Robin." I almost think he might be schizophrenic if he actually takes on these personas. Either that or they represent parts of himself.
Winnie the Pooh: The Canadian Medical Association's article identified him with these disorders based on the following behaviors:
-ADHD: the inattentive subtype.
-Impulsivity and obsessive fixations on honey. (also obesity)
-OCD: Repetitive counting. OCD mixed with ADHD could eventually contribute to tourettes syndrome later on in life.
Piglet: Generalized Anxiety Disorder. He also has a speech imediment with his stuttering problem. Pooh and Piglet also have significant self-esteem injury.
Owl: Dyslexic, but extremely bright.
Tigger: ADHD. He cannot control his hyperactivity. He even will try anything that comes along his path which concerns psychologist with substance abuse problems. He is impulsive, a bad role model, a social magnet but those drawn into him will get themselves into trouble.
Kanga: The overprotective mother, obsessed with controlling her young.
Rabbit: OCD--he over-organzies and is obsessive with order. To me, for a male character, he is very feminine. Not that this is a disorder, it is just interesting to look at when analyzing his character.
Eeore: Depression, the most obvious. He needs some medication to brighten up his day.
All of these characters are male, with the exception of Kanga. I wonder why that is...?
Did I miss anything here or with other smaller characters within the show? Perhaps more or different diagnosis would make more sense.
What do you think of the psychological states of Winnie the Pooh characters?