I have devised a psychoanalytical model than can link childhood experience, personality and political views together. Two axes: mother/father, kill/nurture.
Read on to find out more! Which one are you, and how many people can you name who belong to one or the other???
NB: The examples provided of each type are in many case not supposed to be morally equivalent in the least. Like star signs, every personality type has a good side and a bad side.
TYPE A: MATRICIDAL (Mother/kill)
The Matricide person experienced maternal love from a young age in terms of contradictory absolutes and mixed messaging. Their father may have been warm and dearly loved, but less dominant than the mother. As this person goes on in life, they desperately long for love, but also recoil in fear and horror. Their view of the political is nostalgic and romantic, and the present is bound to appear mediocre and hypocritical to them. Insecure in their own perceived lack of achievement, they can be demanding and unforgiving towards others, but also highly creative and innovative in their thinking. When appropriately channelled, the matricidal instincts can assist in imposing order on chaos, often in an innovative manner; for the Matricide is a very dogged and shameless person. But when their instincts run wild, they can be disruptive, contemptuous and fall prey to the same forces of disorder they deplore in others. They make staunch patriots, are suspicious of secular and material tendencies and indeed anything that smacks of the urbane, bourgeois, respectable, cosmopolitan and generally hypocritical tendencies they consider to be emblematic of a mediocrity whose perceived gains outweigh the costs he attributes to them. They can be fiercely devoted to their religion, religious institution or deity, and lean traditional: but they often lack the self-control and discipline of the more pious. Their devotion sometimes has an earthiness if not a paradoxical crudeness and vulgarity: and they are often more likely to die as martyrs, consigning their legacy to some unseen future harvest, than to provide a positive example to their contemporaries.
Examples: Brexiteers, early Church Fathers, Jewish prophets, Evangelicals, Traditional Catholics, Ayatollah Khomeini, White Nationalists, Jihadists.
TYPE B: PATRICIDAL (Father/kill)
The Patricide had a difficult relationship with their father, and there is a primal revenge instinct that manifests itself in rebellion. Unlike the Matricide, the Patricide’s form of rebellion is likely to be less inclined to the nostalgia and idealisation of a lost past: instead of such Arcadian instincts, a resolute and giddy futurism is more the case. The Matricide wishes to go forward, only in order to go backwards: while the for the Patricide, the past is only useful insofar as it can be instrumentalised in their flight to the future; otherwise, it can be safely discarded. The Patricide is suspicious of order and law, and places the burden of proof on power in a very generalised if not indiscriminate manner: the Matricide also has this temptation, but tends to turn their turrets on the ills of today, as they have an awe and reverence of the past and of the classical and indeed of high art, which the Patricide considers quaint and obscurantist. Patricides will be suspicious of distinctions like patriotism vs national chauvinism, or healthy faith versus superstition, generally viewing such distinctions as specious ways for power to mask itself under the guise of respectability. The Matricide considers the Patricide to veer from rebellion into selfishness and egotism, while the Patricide sees the Matricide as being hypocritical and inconsistent, hugging close a disavowed regard for power.
Examples: Second Wave Feminists, Third Wave Feminists, Marxists, Radical LGBT Activists.
TYPE C: MOTHER-NURTURING (Mother/Nurture)
The Mother-Nurturer is likely to have had a childhood with a positive experience of maternal and paternal love, but perhaps a lingering (but somewhat attenuated) distrust of power and order. With their cosmopolitan and humanitarian vision of life, they lean on the side of a ‘liberal’ outlook, broadly understood. They pride themselves on their empathy and compassion, but are unaware at times of how they can appear condescending to others, and they can also be reluctant to examine blind spots and inconsistency in their care and concern for others. They struggle to emphasise with those whose outlook appears cynical and pessimistic, just as Patricides and (in particular) Matricides view them as unbearably naive ‘useful idiots.’ Mother-Nurturers see Matricides and Patricides as conspiratorial, paranoid and hard to please in their outlook, while Matricides and Patricides view Mother Nurterers as childish, superficial and unperceptive. The Mother Nurturers view both Matricides and Patricides as disturbingly subversive and dangerous, but when push comes to shove, they would usually prefer to align themselves with Patricides than Matricides, although they are anxious to reign in what they see as the worst excesses of the Patricides: this is likely to be viewed with resentment by the Patricides, while the Matricides will be contemptuous of any olive branch the Mother-Nurturers will offer, viewing it as a cynical and dishonest attempt at emotional manipulation.
Examples: Remainers, Agnostics, Liberal Feminists, Establishment Democrats, Tim Farron, Jo Swinson, Caroline Lucas, Nick Cohen, David Lammy.
TYPE D: FATHER-NURTURING (Father/Nurture)
The Father-nurturer, like the Mother-Nurturer, does not have as many childhood hang-ups as the Matricides and Patricides. They do however view the Mother-Nurturer as too conformist, just as Matricides and Patricides do. At the same time, they are wary of the lack of prudence they perceive in Matricides and Patricides, and while they may well have some sympathies with their rebellious spirit, they are also, like the Mother-Nurturer, concerned about the rashness, one-sidedness and ideological character of the other two more (as they see it) ‘extreme’ types. Matricides and Patricides may be impatient with the Father-Nurturer, but may also have a begrudging regard for the Father-Nurturer’s warm blend of humane regard for human well-being and prudence, as deep down, they may themselves be insecure about their own ‘reckless’ approach to criticism and change.
Examples: Pope Francis, Dalai Lama, John Stuart Mill, Mary Shelley, Non-Revolutionary Anarchists, Quakers, Unitarians, Anti-Theists, Social Democrats, LGBT Reformists.