Hitchcock's Halloween Treat (or Trick?): Psycho, or Embodied Introject

Uploaded 10/22/2023, approx. 33 minute read

Okay, Shoshanim, an unusual opening, you must admit, with Sam Vaknin, every day is Halloween.

But today, unfortunately, we have to discuss another nutcase, Norman Bates of Psycho fame.

Psycho was a 1960 masterpiece by Alfred Hitchcock. For those of you who are too young to remember, this movie, rush to the entrances and go and watch it. And for those of you who have watched it, this video is gonna contain quite a few spoilers, so you have my apology in advance.

We are approaching Halloween and I received a comment from one of the more discerning YouTube viewers.

Since we are approaching Halloween, she wrote, I thought it might be interesting to request a video of your analysis of this scary psychological thriller movie by Alfred Hitchcock, Psycho. I'm curious of your breakdown of the psychosis and how that relates to the narcissistic mother identification issue, as you've explained on your YouTube channel.

Is this level of depravity just under the surface with narcissists and psychopaths, or is there a lower level of this type of psychopathy already going on with a narcissist in relation to the mothers?

Okay, I'll do my best to meet this high bar, this level of expectations.

First of all, let's be clear, like many other films by the inimitable Alfred Hitchcock, Psycho is a morality play, the hidden messages, bad things happen to bad people. The victim in the film, the woman who ultimately gets slaughtered, is Marion, Marion is cynical, she is impulsive, she steals money, she changes her car midstream on the spur of the moment. And at the drop of a hat, she veers into an isolated motel. She just acts on impulse and her sister confirms that when she says to Marion's lover that patience is not a virtue of the family. Marion is delinquent, criminal actually, and yet she's capable of experiencing guilt, she feels guilty.

The other protagonist is Norman Bates of the Bates Motel. Norman Bates runs the always empty motel, he's humorous, he's charming, he appears to be totally normal. He is very insightful and very helpful, a mask of sanity.

Actually at some point during the film, he provides Marion with what could easily pass as psychotherapy. He talks to her about life, other people, mistakes we make, decisions and choices that we regret and what we should do about them.

At the end of this improvise therapy session, Marion thanks him, her future killer. A mask of sanity, as Harvey Klechly puts it.

And yet, immediately it's evident that something is wrong with Norman.

We tend to gloss over such toxins with sea, such warning signs. We tend to ignore them, suppress them, neglect them, overlook them, reframe them, we don't want to believe bad things about other people. We want to believe that the world essentially is good, that people essentially are helpful.

And so when we come across any of these tinty tabulations of evil, we simply look the other way.

The first glitches, the first glitches in Norman's behavior are evident minutes after he has met Marion for the first time.

For example, Norman is unable to say the words bathroom and falsity, false. He stammers when he lies to the detective, when he's stressed, when he contemplates sex. He has a harsh inner critic, a super ego, that inhibits him, prevents him from talking, impedes his speech.

And that's a very important sign.

If we look at the content of the speech act that is intermittent, halting, stammering, we learn a lot about the person.

If someone is unable to point to the bathroom and use the word bathroom, it's because bathroom is about nakedness. It's about the ultimate privacy and intimacy.

These are issues that bother Norman a lot.

Similarly, Norman cannot say the word false or falsity, because as far as he's concerned, lying is the ultimate sin.

This is what his inner voice keeps telling him.

That's what his super ego torments him about, because Norman is living the life of a lie.

All of Norman's, all the elements in Norman's life are lies.

He lies about his mother. He lies about what he does to women. He lies about many things all the time.

And consequently, Norman is tormented and tortured most of his waking hours by this internal voice, which as we will see, he does not perceive as internal.

He externalizes.

We'll come to it in a minute.

Norman says, I'm not a fool and I'm not capable of being fooled, not even by a woman.

He has a very low view of women.

He's essentially a misogynist, although he would never admit to such a thing.

He hates women because he fears women. He's afraid of women.

Women, starting with his mother, have power over him. They are able to transmogrify him, to fool him, to cheat him, to cause him inordinate pain.

And so women represent the potential for hurt and he hates them and he loathes them and he shies away from them.

Never mind how mightily he is attracted to some specimen of these subspecies to women.

And then he adds as a kind of afterthought, she might have fooled me, but she didn't fool my mother.

Norman's mother is his false self.

Norman's mother is perfect. She is omniscient. She is impeccably, impeccably morally upright. She is everything that Norman is not.

Norman is spineless. She's strong.

Norman is indecisive. She's opinionated.

Norman is soft-spoken. She's harshly critical.

Norman is imperfect. She's perfect.

Norman can be fooled. He's stupid. She can't be fooled. She is omniscient. She's godlike in her amazing intellect and intelligence.

So she is, of course, a false self in the clinical sense of the word.

In the first exchange between Norman and his mother that Marion overhears, Norman's mother sounds like a jealous lover. She implies that eroticism, not to mention sex, are bad things.

And she humiliates Norman.

"Tell her that," she says.

"Or do you have the guts, boy?" She constantly demeans and debases and shames Norman.

Even this briefest of brief exchanges is enough for Marion to form the opinion that Norman should not remain silent, that he should react, that he should somehow put a stop to it and maybe even walk away altogether.

Norman hesitates to interact with Marion in any intimate settings because he's very, very attracted to her.

It's not very clear why he is attracted to her.

Marion has a lot in common with Norman's mother. She is opinionated. She's cynical. She's harshly critical. She's observant. She's shrewd. She's street smart. She's cunning. She's a kind of maternal figure, a replica, if you wish, of Norman's real mother.

And intimacy with her, sex, for example, would be highly incestuous.

So Norman is very loathe, reluctant to, for example, enter Marion's cabin where she's staying. He invites her to have dinner, a sandwich, actually, in his parlor, the empty room of his office. The parlor is full of stuffed birds mounted on the wall. Deathsigns of death are everywhere.

He tells Marion that taxidermy, stuffing animals, is his hobby, but he likes to stuff birds because they are passive and compliant and submissive.

Norman associates pleasure with submissiveness. He associates comfort with death. He stuffs birds because he can't tolerate life. He wants to convert life into a mounted exposition, totally controllable, inert, immobile, and it is at his back and core with perfect access.

Norman rejects life in his hobbies, but also in his daily routine. He hides in the office. He maintains a motel, which is dead because the highway has been moved over the traffic, and the motel is always empty. All 12 cabins are always empty.

He says, "We have a vacancy. We have 12 vacancies. Everything is empty." Empty exactly as Norman's core is emptied.

The motel is a reflection and an extension, and in a way, an emblem of Norman. The motel represents Norman. It is empty. It is vacated exactly as Norman is empty and vacated. There's nobody there, and it's dead. There's no life in it. There are no visitors. There are no guests in it.

Norman doesn't even bother to ask people to sign the guest book.

And so the motel is Norman.

Norman keeps his mother, who he claims is an invalid. He keeps her in the house. House is separate from the motel. The motel is his kingdom. The motel is where he becomes. The motel is where he feels that he could be himself.

And the way to become himself, time and again, is to kill women, to kill birds, and to stuff them.

Also the women, but we'll come to it a bit later.

When Marion asks him if he has friends, Norman's automatic responses, "I'm thinking" response is, "A boy's best friend is his mother." And he exposes an immaturity coupled with an exceedingly powerful, omnipotent introject of his mother inside himself.

He says, "I give up on the rest of humanity because I have mother, and mother is all I need. She is my best friend."

Norman says, "We are all in our private traps, clamped in these traps. And I know that none of us can ever get out. We scratch and claw, but only at the air, only at each other. And for all of it, we never budge an inch.

Marion answers, "Sometimes we deliberately step into those traps. And Norman retorts, "I was born in my trap. I was born in mine. I don't mind it anymore."

Marion is a bit taken aback, "But you should mind it." And Norman says a bit mischievously, "Oh, I do mind it, but I say that I don't. Sometimes when mother talks to me like that, I feel I like to go up there and curse her and leave her forever, or at least not light the fire.

But I know I can't. She is ill."

And of course, this is projection. It is Norman who is ill.

We don't know enough about his mother at this stage.

Everything we've heard of her, we've heard from Norman.

But as the film unfolds, it becomes clear that the sick individual is actually Norman, and he's projecting his sickness onto his mother.

And you haven't heard the half of it.

Norman proceeds, "A son is a poor substitute for a lover. If I were to leave her, the fire will go out. It will be cold and damp like a grave.

If you love someone, you don't do that to them, even if you hate them.

And then he catches himself, this rare admission that he loves and hates his mother, this ambivalence, and he says, "I don't hate her. I hate what she has become. I hate the illness."

As we discover ironically later in the film, it is Norman who made her what she has become.

So his hatred of the current transformation of his mother is actually self-hatred.

Because everything his mother has become was wrought and created by Norman, every single bit, every element, as we will see later.

Whatever his mother has been transformed into, she has been transformed into by Norman.

It was Norman's doing.

So this is the ultimate expression of self-loathing, self-hatred, and self-rejection.

Norman is hating himself, rejecting himself, loathing himself through his mother.

His mother is this introject, this internal object, this voice inside his mind that keeps telling him, "You're a bad object. You're evil. You're a liar. You're spineless. You're gutless. You are not very bright. You could be easily fooled. You should avoid women. You're stupid." And so on and so forth.

These constant emanations and communications from the bad object coalesce in his mind into a mother picture, a mother figure.

To be a mother means to demean and debase and shame and humiliate her son.

The son, never mind how much he wants it, can never be a lover.

In other words, the son can never be loved by the mother.

The mother's role in Norman's life is to maintain the integrity and the power of the bad object inside Norman's mind as a way to control Norman, of course, for his own good.

Norman hates himself and rejects himself and loathes himself through this mother, introject, augmenting, empowering and magnifying the bad object with every sentence and with every action.

Because a good boy does his mother's bidding.

A good boy does not disagree with mother, does not challenge mother, does not invalidate mother's judgment. A good boy modifies, alters his behavior so as to prove mother right, to vindicate her and to validate her.

When Marion suggests to put the mother somewhere, elsewhere, Norman becomes aggressive. He stiffens in a threatening way and he says, you mean an institution, a manhouse? What do you know about caring? Have you ever seen the inside of one of those places? The laughing and the tears and the cruel eyes studying you?

And of course he's describing his own nightmare, not his mother's.

He's afraid of ending up in a manhouse.

He continues, my mother there? And then he becomes ominously aggressive, almost violent. His body language is pretty threatening and invasive.

My mother there? She's harmless, just one of those stuffed birds. She needs me. It is not as if she's a maniac, a raving thing. She just goes a little mad sometimes.

We all go a little mad sometimes.

Haven't you?

And this is a therapeutic moment, therapeutic moment for Marion.

She suddenly is able to see herself through Norman's eyes, which is the first very important step in therapy, the ability to mirror the patient so that the patient can gain insight.

Ironically and crazily, insanely, Norman the madman becomes Marion's therapist and succeeds to induce an awakening, a healing in her.

And she says she kind of snaps out of her reverie. She stole a lot of money and she's on the run on the lamb, sometimes pursued by the police. And she says, he asked her, we all go mad sometimes. Haven't you?

And she says, yes, sometimes just one time could be enough.

Thank you.

And at that moment, she decides to go back to Phoenix to return the money to turn herself in.

It was Norman, Norman who cured her, healed her, brought her to her senses and restored her morality and her reality testing with his madness.

Very, very crucial and amazing insight elaborated on by the likes of Michel Foucault and Althusser, but we're not going to it. I won't torture you the way Norman is torturing Marion later in the movie.

Time for wine break. And yes, you keep wondering if it is wine. This is Halloween. What can I say?

As I've said, because of the harsh internal introject, what we would have called earlier in the history of psychology, the super ego, the sadistic super ego, the harsh inner critic, because of these voices that keep tormenting him.

Norman is very attuned, very sensitive to lying. He's hyper vigilant. He's sure that everyone is trying to fool him.

This is what I told him that he's stupid, that he's gullible.

So he's constantly on the hunt for clues and proofs and evidence that people are lying to him.

Marion lied to him about her name and then foolishly forgot the name that she has used. And the lie was exposed. She signed the guestbook using another name.

And Norman smiles to himself. It's a kind of triumph, a victory. He exposed her for the liar that she is.

At that moment, of course, she deserved to be punished.

The inner voice in his head, the mother introject, is very punitive. It is self-punitive in the sense that the mother introject seeks to punish Norman for who he is, for what he is, not only for his misbehavior, but for his constitution, for his composition.

So the mother introject also seeks to punish others external to Norman, people who may threaten Norman, people who may fool Norman, people who may seduce Norman, people who may tempt Norman, people who may lead Norman astray, people who may take advantage of Norman.

The mother, in other words, is a protector.

Now, at the end of the movie, there's a caricature of a psychiatrist who kind of analyzes Norman's psychology. And I beg to differ with most of the things he says. I actually disagree with many of them.

He says, for example, that the mother is romantically jealous of Norman, that there was an incestuous relationship between them and the way he was jealous, romantically jealous of his mother and her lover.

He projected this jealousy and he assumed that his mother is jealous of him.

So the psychiatrist's thesis is Norman was jealous when he saw his mother with another man and he, Norman, projected this onto his mother and he assumed that his mother would be jealous if she were to see him with a woman.

This is only a part of the picture. I think the bigger part is the protective or overprotective nature of the mother. She is there to defend Norman because he is defenseless and helpless. It's a form of internalized, learned helplessness.

The minute Norman caught Marion lying to him, she became a potential seductress, a manipulator, an enemy because lying is instrumental. Lies are weaponized very often.

Norman doesn't have any idea what Marion might want, but she definitely doesn't mean well. At that point, she becomes an enemy and the protector state, which is the mother, essentially a kind of violent psychopath, the protector state is triggered.

Remember that in my work, there are self-states, especially in people with mental health issues, personality disorders, there are self-states.

One of the self-states is always the protector, protects the other self-states. This protector self-state is usually a psychopath.

We have this, for example, DID, Dissociative Identity Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Psychopathy, Classic Psychopathy and so on.

Same with Norman, he has a protector state and Marion has triggered this protector state.

But at the same time, he finds Marion sexually irresistible. He is a voyeur. He peeps through a hole in the wall in the partition separating his office from Marion's cabin and he sees her undressing and naked.

The minute he does, his sex is sexually aroused and he rushes to his mother because this creates an enormous conflict.

The conflict is twofold. He's cheating on his mother with another woman and his sexual arousal renders him fallible, vulnerable, in danger.

He perceives sex or sexual attraction as ominous, a threat and he rushes to mummy for protection and also to make clear to her that he is not about to cheat on her.

His loyalty lies with her. She is the only woman in his life.

And then, of course, we have the iconic shower scene. We see the blood circling the drain. It's a purge, a purging of evil thoughts. It is a symbolic scene.

Norman is genuinely shocked by the murder, but the murder was the only way for him to get rid of the temptation by purging the evil that has invaded his mind via the sexual vector and also to restore the harmony with his ever-observant, ever-present mother.

Norman seems quite skilled at removing all traces to the crime, the murder of Marion, body included. He carries the body from the room to the trunk of his car the way a bridegroom carries his bride over the threshold after a wedding.

Very interesting. He enacts life amid carnage. He's very gentle with the body. He doesn't just dump it or drag it or whatever.

And so there is a kind of symbolic wedding which involves death rather than life. And crossing the threshold of the motel, which, as you remember, is Norman writ large. The motel is Norman magnified. Crossing the threshold of the cabin, leaving the motel behind, is actually taking his bride to face the world.

Which world is this? The world of death, because this is Norman's only world.

The birds are stuffed. And as we shall discover soon, his mother is long dead. The mother that he communicates with daily, interacts with, argues with, listens to, adheres to, is intimate with. She doesn't exist. She has died 10 years ago, 10 years before.

Norman's world is inverted. It is death that brings life. And life threatens death. One by one, society begins to encroach on his erstwhile, isolated and protected world.

There's Abrogast, the detective, Sam Loomis, Marion's boyfriend and Marion's sister. He kills Abrogast, but he doesn't stop more people from coming. He feels besieged.

His interaction with Sam Loomis, for example, is already very disrupted. He's unable to function. He's unable to talk coherently. He's falling apart. He's disintegrating. He's sliding into a psychotic state.

At the time the film was made, in the 60s, multiple personality disorder was a very big thing. It caught the imagination and attention, not only of professionals and scholars, but even more so of the media and mass media, show business and so on.

So at the end of the film there's this psychiatrist that I've disdainfully mentioned before. And he diagnoses Norman with multiple personality disorder, two personalities.

Norman and his mother sharing the same body. That is, of course, expressly untrue.

In multiple personality disorder, which was later named dissociative identity disorder, the sub-personalities do not communicate. The alters, they're called alters, the alters do not communicate with each other.

The mother alter and the Norman alter would never talk to each other, would never know about each other's existence.

There is a host, which is a mediator between all the other broken fragments of the personality, the alters, the sub-personalities, the pseudo-identities.

So as someone with multiple personality disorder, you would have a host personality and you would have a mother personality, a Norman personality, and perhaps a few other personalities. And they wouldn't know about each other except through the agency of the host.

But Norman is not the same. In Norman's case, the mother and Norman not only know about each other, but they cohabit, they coexist, they talk to each other, they argue with each other, they shout at each other, they touch each other. The extent of interaction is such that this is most definitely not multiple personality disorder.

And the threat?

Norman assumes his mother's personality, replete with an ugly, cheap wig, a dress, and a knife.

But he never loses sight of the existence of his mother. There is 100% communication between his mother and himself.

And Norman, these two sub-personalities that occupy his mind and his body, it is true that when Norman murders young women, he dissociates, and the mother personality takes over completely.

And so the diagnosis that fits Norman nowadays would be OSDD.

And I have a video on this channel which deals with borderline personality disorder as a form of OSDD where I explain OSDD in detail.

Norman has what I call embedded introject.

Let me explain to you what is an embedded introject.

Do you know when you talk, for example, if you were to talk to a good friend about your abuser, you're in an abusive relationship, your intimate partner or supposedly intimate partner is abusing you egregiously, and you're really broken and damaged and so on, and you go, you talk to your friend, to your good friend.

You know sometimes you assume the identity of the abuser, you imitate his speech, your body language becomes that of the abuser because you want to demonstrate to your good friend how your abuser talks, what your abuser looks like, and what is the language of his body.

So for a minute, for 10 seconds you become your abuser.

And this is the embedded introject. It's when the internal voice, the introject, the internal object inside your head, which represents your abuser out there externally in reality, you have a representation of your abuser in your mind when this representation takes over you, compels you to talk and walk and act as if you were your abuser.

And this happens more often than you know.

How many times did you catch yourself acting like your mother?

Same things which actually were said by your father arguing with a husband that's no longer there, but in a way that you emulate or imitate both parties.

How many times did it happen to you?

It happens to everyone.

And this is an embedded introject. It's an introject that hijacks the body, introject that takes over the body and embodies itself, an introject that is reified through the body.

And this is what happens to Norman in his OSDD condition, which is not psychosis.

Norman's condition is clinically not psychosis. It's a form of dissociative identity disorder, which has nothing to do with psychosis.

Norman doesn't have any problem differentiating between external objects and internal objects.

Norman doesn't see hallucinations. There's no psychosis there. There's just a situation where the introject inside his mind is so exceedingly powerful that it takes over time and again, especially in order to protect Norman.

And then the introject embodies itself, forces Norman to use his body to enact the introject, to wear a wig, to wear a dress, to become his mother. Of course, his mother is actually mummified. He stole the body of his mother 10 years before and he stuffed her. She stuffed like the birds.

And why did he do that?

Again, my interpretation is different to the interpretation of the alleged or so-called psychiatrist in the movie.

I think he did that because he needs to be seen.

Norman's core identity is a derivative of his mother seeing him. His mother's gaze defines him and provides him with boundaries and with a sense of innate, constellated, integrated self.

Actually, Norman's self is outsourced. His mother became his self. His mother became an introject so dominant that he displaced all other internal objects and took over the entire inner space as a kind of labent shop.

You see why I drink wine? If it is wine, of course. It's Halloween. Don't forget.

So Norman needs to be seen. When his mother died, there was no one to see him anymore. Literally, by the way, he's a total schizo-eat hermit, lives 100% alone.

So he stole her body because he wanted to keep her alive in the sense that he wanted her to keep seeing him. That's why he places her embalmed, stuffed body on a chair facing the window overlooking him in the motel. That way, he is always seen by his mother.

He needs to be seen and it's not enough to imagine her in his head seeing him. He needs the physical compliment. He needs the physical body seeing him through her long dead eyes, the empty sockets.

That's how powerful the introject is. The introject forces Norman to use human bodies, his body, his mother's body, the girl's body.

He needs to embody the introject because the introject is too overpowering, too all pervasive, too big, geographically speaking, for his mind.

The introject exits his mind because it takes over the entire environment.

And so every body that happens to be around is at the disposal of the introject and is used by the introject.

That way, with a stuffed body of his mother sitting on a chair facing the window, Norman feels seen by his mother all the time. Of course, this means she can intervene and protect him when the need arises.

But what really has happened? What has really happened?

We said that Norman's mother died. How did she die?

Norman is young.

When his mother found a lover, Norman felt jealous, betrayed and not seen anymore.

In his mind, Norman was merged, infused with his mother also sexually. In his mind, he and his mother were in an incestuous relationship, possibly emotional only, but in an incestuous relationship. Not necessarily only sexually, but emotionally. They were one. They were a single unit.

Suddenly, this unit broke apart and his mother found another man.

Norman is a man. So it's as if his mother started to see another man, not him.

And Norman became unseen, invisible.

So he was not only jealous romantically, as the psychiatrist in the movie is suggesting, but in my view, he also felt betrayed and he also felt annulled, non-existent.

His mother is not seeing him anymore, so he doesn't exist.

To restore his existence, he needed to kill his mother's lover.

But also to prevent this from happening again, this betrayal, he needed to kill his mother as well.

He needed to immobilize her. He needed to render her a stuffed bird, passive and easy as he characterizes his stuffed birds.

Norman spreads the lie, which by the way, proves that he is not psychotic. He is very much attuned to his environment. He knows what's happening. He knows how to manipulate people. He knows how to keep safe. He spreads the lie that he found his mother and her lover dead in bed of stricken poisoning. Everyone came to believe that his mother administered the poison, having found that the guy she was with has lied to her about being married.

That's a story that Norman succeeds to sell everyone on. He is very good at manipulating. He appears very reliable, very responsible, very truthful, exceedingly charming and so on and so forth.

In short, a bit of a psychopath.

But actually it was Norman who killed both of them.

And having killed his mother, Norman failed to get rid of his guilt and of her introject.

The interject was provoking the guilt in the first place.

And the solution was, okay, I killed mommy. I killed my mother.

Her introject is inside my head.

So anyhow, she's a lie. She's talking to me. She's chastising me, castigating me and criticizing me and humiliating me and shaming me all the time. She might as well be alive.

And I feel guilty that she's dead.

So let me revive her because I'm omnipotent and godlike.

Norman, as you guessed by now, is actually not only OSDD but a narcissist.

Caught in the vice of guilt, egodystony, shame and the constant raging battle with his mother's introject.

Norman hits upon the solution of simply reversing the process.

If he feels guilty about killing her, he will unkill her. He will revive his mother. He will let her use his body and his mind, kind of in tragic possession instead of demon possession.

So Norman comes up with two solutions to keep his mother alive or to resuscitate her, having killed her.

One, he will abscond with her body and stuff it, in this way keep her alive for good. And he will allow her to use his body for locomotion.

So here, he doesn't need to feel guilty anymore.

He may have killed her once, but he has given her two bodies in return, hers and his.

He shouldn't be angry at him and he doesn't feel guilty actually in the movie.

You don't seem guilty. He's arguing with her. He's disagreeing with her. He kind of moves her around despite her protestations, despite her, you know, she's very angry at him, but he moves her around, moves her to the cellar and back to the room as he wishes, as he pleases, because he feels that he has given her more than she had lost when he killed her.

Now she has two bodies to use.

Norman is a man and he murders seductive and attractive women in a misogynistic payback for what his mother did to men, to his father and to himself.

And also in order to assuage his mother's supposed jealousy.

So I agree with the psychiatrist at the end of the movie. It's a pity we are not able to meet.

I agree with him at the end of the movie that Norman's imputed jealousy, when he imputes jealousy to his mother, Norman is actually projecting his own jealousy.

He is jealous, romantically jealous of his mother being with another man. And he assumes that she should be jealous of him being with another woman. That part is true.

But there's another part.

Norman hates women.

Norman hates women because the only meaningful woman in his life has tortured and tormented, destroyed him, did not allow him to self-actualize and realize his potential and become everything that he could have become.

A wonderful man is so handsome, is so talented, is so gifted, is so charming, is so everything. And his mother stunted his growth. His mother kept him dead, in effect, a plaything. And he resents her for this. He hates her for this.

And she's a stand-in for all womankind because she's the only woman who's ever been meaningfully integrated in his life.

So he hates what his mother does, to men, also his father. And what he does to women is pay back. He killed his mother, but now he's going to kill all women because they misuse and abuse their sex. They're out to hurt men. They're out to humiliate and shame men and manipulate them and take them as fools. Women are evil. And he needs to exterminate any one of them that infests his territory.

Norman conducts vociferous dialogues with his dead mother precisely about this issue, about women. But these dialogues are also about who controls who. Who is the ability to hurt whom now, an inversion of the power matrix?

For example, his mother refuses to remain hidden in the cellar, in the basement, in order to not be found. The introject resists repression. Taking his mother's stuffed body and hiding it in the cellar is a perfect metaphor, a perfect enactment of repressing the introject, of shutting off this mandolin voice inside his head that won't let him be, definitely won't let him be in peace.

And so it's very symbolic. He is burying his mother again. He took her out of the grave. He gave her an existence as a stuffed version of herself. Then he let her use his body, and it's never enough. It's never been enough. She's been at him and at it relentlessly, ruthlessly, mercilessly. And he hates her for that. And he doesn't want other people to find her because he understands the implications as far as he's concerned.

And so now is the time to protect himself and to bury his mother again. And she resists as any introject would.

It's also a symbolic act. I'm going to bury you again. And that way, maybe shut you up inside my mind. And the bad object merges at the end when the mother talks to herself at the police station.

Of course, Norman transforms into his mother when he's arrested because the mother is a protector, a self-state. She protects him against the police.

But the mother also has a very clear view about who is responsible, who is evil, who is unworthy, who is stupid, who brought them into this predicament. The mother says, the mother embodiment, the introject embodiment, the introject actually says, "He was always bad," talking about Norman. The mother says, "Norman was always bad. I should have put him away years ago. In the end, he intended to tell them that I killed those girls. And that men, I killed those girls and that men, as if I could do anything but sit and stare like one of his stuffed birds. I will sit here. I'll be quiet just in case they do suspect me. They're probably watching me. Let them. They won't see, they don't see what kind of a person I am. I'm not even going to swat that fly. They will see and they will know and they will say why she wouldn't even harm a fly.

At the very end of the film, possessed by the introject of his mother, Norman talks to himself in the capacity of his mother and reaffirms the bad object.

"You, Norman, are mentally ill. It's all your fault, Norman. You are stupid enough to bring us here. You are the one who killed the girls. So you are evil. You're dangerous and malevolent.

I, your mother, I'm blemishless. I'm innocent. I'm impeccable. I'm the reification of good. You're evil. I'm good. It's splitting, self-splitting defense.

And I'm going to demonstrate to the world at large and to the police more specifically how innocuous and harmless I am.

And then they will realize who is the real culprit, the real criminal, someone who should have been put away many years ago.

I pitied you. I loved you. So I didn't, but I should have.

This is the introject's final revenge. This is the ultimate self-destruction, turning Norman into the police. She's snitching on Norman, in effect, in a way.

And this proves how much she hates him. Clearly, Norman would be executed if he's not found. Totally insane.

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