Monday, March 30, 2009

Sociopaths in literature: E.M. Forster's Maurice

A slow nature such as Maurice's appears insensitive, for it needs time even to feel. Its instinct is to assume that nothing either for good or evil has happened, and to resist the invader. Once gripped, it feels acutely, and its sensations in love are particularly profound. Given time, it can know and impart ecstasy; given time, it can sink to the heart of Hell. Thus it was that his agony began as a slight regret; sleepless nights and lonely days must intensify it into a frenzy that consumed him. It worked inwards, till it touched the root whence body and soul both spring, the "I" that he had been trained to obscure, and, realized at last, doubled its power and grew superhuman. For it might have been joy. New worlds broke loose in him at this, and he saw from the vastness of the ruin what ecstasy he had lost, what a communion.

Maybe not full-fledged sociopath, maybe just baby or very high functioning sociopath, maybe just British.


  1. He's not a sociopath at all, he has Bipolar Disorder. Sociopath's have no regrets because they don't understand right and wrong, and by having regret you acknowledge to yourself that you have done something wrong and feel guilt. Sociopaths deny doing any wrong doing. I suggest you read The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout she's a psychologist at Harvard Medical School.

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