Looking Beyond Catharsis
March 7, 2011 4:21 PM   Subscribe

Where can one find resources on exploring psychology through film and literature? Which films, books, music, websites, and other media should be included in a psychology collection? How does media use psychology techniques in film making? Which media explain psychology subjects well?

There is an overabundance of pseudoscientific and dated psychology material such as Freud, Jung, and so on; however, it is much harder to find material more modern psychology and its relationship to media. Resources on how the media uses psychology techniques and how psychology is incorporated into media would be very valuable.

one flew over the cuckoo's nest, the book and the movie, is one example of exploring psychological concepts.

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo is an example of camera techniques using perception techniques.
posted by Knigel to Media & Arts (8 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Would Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware books work?
posted by SisterHavana at 5:29 PM on March 7, 2011

David Cronenberg's Spider and Lodge Kerrigan's Clean, Shaven are both excellent films about schizophrenia.

Roman Polanski movies, especially Repulsion/Rosemary's Baby/The Tenant, tend to vividly portray anxiety, paranoia, panic attacks, and how our own neuroses can corrupt us.

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Lacan: But Were Afraid to Ask Hitchcock is a dense, idiosyncratic book about (...wait for it...) Lacan and Hitchcock. The book's author Slavoj Zizek also had an interesting special on British television called The Pervert's Guide to Cinema.
posted by Sticherbeast at 5:43 PM on March 7, 2011

Additionally germane Lodge Kerrigan: Keane
Irma Vep
Shock Corridor

I don't know if these explain so much as apply more modern psychologies to its subjects. Peeping Tom also goes in this bucket, but that might be even more abstract.
posted by rhizome at 6:14 PM on March 7, 2011

a classic book from a psychoanalytic point of view:

Gabbard GO, Gabbard K (1999). Psychiatry and the Cinema. American Psychiatric Publishing ISBN 9780880489645

and another work from the same author:

Gabbard GO (2002). The Psychology of the Sopranos: Love, Death, Desire and Betrayal in America's Favorite Gangster Family. Basic Books ISBN 9780465027354
posted by DMelanogaster at 6:28 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

After reading the book A Beautiful Mind, I saw the movie. Although the book was certainly more detailed and accurate, the movie did a much more effective job of conveying what it must be like to experience schizophrenia.
posted by Corvid at 6:59 PM on March 7, 2011

Oliver Sacks' books might be worth including.
posted by amyms at 7:04 PM on March 7, 2011

Best answer: Try psychmovies.com and psychology and movies. If you have netflix and watch a few with a theme, e.g., Dysfunctional Families, you can end up getting recommendations to view other movies in that category.
posted by salvia at 11:40 PM on March 7, 2011

This probably isn't what you're looking for, but I like the Teaching High School Psychology blog. They have quite a few posts about psychology-related movies, TV shows, and Web 2.0-style interactive media.
posted by tatma at 6:50 PM on March 8, 2011

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