Tag Archives: the unconscious

the unconscious

“He disliked this failure of compassion, a nagging compulsion to expose other people’s motives…particularly as his own motives…were so suspect. Why was he there, what failure was he trying to expiate?” (Ballard 344)

“‘Mr. Quail…you possess a most interesting wish-fulfillment dream fantasy. Probably nothing such as you consciously entertain or suppose. This is commonly the way; I hope it won’t upset you too much to hear about it.'” (Dick 401)

I feel both Ballard and Dick seem to implicate that the mind is more than the conscious. The mind can hide from us truths we do not consciously comprehend, though these truths can be found in certain circumstances, such as deep introspection or a drugged almost-coma. By using this premise the author (sf author in this case) can utilize the man vs self conflict to drive the story or to create plot. The author can utilize this device to even impact the surety of the readers in their own minds and in the truths they take to be self evident (though I don’t believe this result seen from either Ballard’s or Dick’s stories; perhaps from Ellison’s though).