Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Writers discovered many things about human psychology before Freud and Jung, as Sigmund Freud, who was extremely well read in literature in various languages, freely acknowledged. Freud derived his theory of the Oedipus complex from the ancient Greek tragedy. In Henry James's story "The Great Good Place," his focal character George Dane is an excellent example of an "introvert," a term which was coined by C. G. Jung in his seminal book Psychological Types. Dane feels as if he is being eaten up by people with their insatiable demands on his time and attention. He needs some time alone to recharge his batteries, to resurrect his identity, to retrieve his own soul. This is an infallible sign of introversion--wanting to be alone and needing to be alone after spending time among people, whether friends, relatives, acquaintances, or strangers. There are many easily recognizable introverts in world literature. Hamlet is a prime example. Herman Melville's Bartleby in "Bartleby the Scrivener" is perhaps the extreme example. Others who come to mind are Rodion Raskolnikov in Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment and Gregor Samsa in Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis. Many writer's themselves must be introverts because of the solitary nature of their profession. A few American authors who come to mind are Edgar Allan Poe, Henry David Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Emily Dickinson, William Faulkner, and E. B. White.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial