“The mind is like an iceberg it floats with one-seventh of its bulk above water” says Sigmund Freud. The three states of mind, the Superego, our pre-conscious reality as well as accessible memories. Essentially is the waiting room to the mind, you can recall any memory from it. It is also how we assume and apprehend how we should act our absolute, innocent, and guilt-inducing half. The Id, which is entirely the contrary, it is our unconscious repressed memories, and our instinctual urges and desires. It is derived from memories we cannot retain, such as birth and traumatic experiences that were left unspoken. Such experiences shape a person’s mentality significantly, it is who they truly are, their Superego is simply who they wish to be. The Ego then is the dictator, choosing which half to trust, it is the conscious and environmental reality. Constantly, the ego is in a fight with itself to understand both sides and which to embrace and be confident of. Considering the Id is popularly viewed as all that is bad, usually, it is consciously disregarded. However, it unconsciously remains. To deny affiliation of our Id, we are denying reality. The Id will always be apart of you, we fear what we do not understand. It is best to try and understand each side and use them both in sync. Fascination with serial killers, grim literature, and horror movies are a gateway to the understanding of the Id. The gateway then opens to a much deeper part of us, which otherwise may not be accessed. We are allured to these ominous sources because we see an aspect of ourselves within them, allowing a deeper analogy of ourselves.
“The Shadow is not simply evil” (The Child and the Shadow, page 4) As stated by Ursula Le Guin, her concept of the man and the shadow applies with the concept of the Ego and the Id. If the Id is the shadow, the Superego is the light, and the Ego is the man. If our shadows were classified as evil then we are all evil. Light is not visible without a shadow, and a shadow does not exist without a light. Our shadows are immensely difficult to analyze solely, considering they are, for the most part, our unconscious. We find that part of ourselves embodied or symbolized in literature, and horror movies. The feeling received when experiencing them appeals to our shadows. It allows us to analyze ourselves in a much deeper, abstract way. Even non-fictional people such as Charles Manson, we can see a part of ourselves in, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Manson used this particular method in his creation of the Manson family. He appealed to the unspoken shadows of his followers. He used aversion and apprehension to appeal to their darker half, their shadows then overthrew their superego.
In Fall of the House of Usher, Roderick fears his own fears. Fears, in this case, would tie to his shadow. He fears his own shadow and tries to defy it. However, that defiance only leads to his shadow growing stronger. Throughout the story, little interaction between the narrator and Madeline occurs, foreshadowing Madeline is applied to, and symbolizes something much larger. Once Madeline is assumed deceased Rodrick and the Narrator place her in the tomb. Madeline is the embodiment of Roderick’s fears. He then tries to lock his fears away, he tries to deny his Id. But in the end, his shadow relocates itself back to him, slowly with a sense of foreboding. After Roderick's death, the original crack down the house splits the house into two. Which both collapse into the ground and disperse, representing the coexistence of the Superego and the Id within the ego. Without the other, they both are led to downfall and will collapse in the end.
If we are able to obtain an understanding of our Id and see the shadow that we all cast, we may then face and control who we truly are, and use it for the betterment of ourselves. To be afraid, simply is the obtaining knowledge of our shadows, of ourselves, in the figures portrayed. It is a bitter-sweet sensation, it is a natural instinct to be curious and to analyze, that is why we are allured to such morbid and compelling topics. Insanity itself is the definition of disowning your demons and your shadow. To who deny your half, lay dreaming beneath a common veil of distorted reality. To deny your darker half and let it consume you, as Roderick demonstrated, or to utilize it to consume others at your advantage, as Charles Manson demonstrated, are both the in-balance of the Id. You cannot exclude or embrace it but simply accept and advance with it. If we may dance with our shadows and laugh with our demons, then we will be sane, and we will be honest.