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Origin of Aggression in Modern Society: Based on Film ‘American Psycho’
Psychoanalysis 2018;29:63-71
Published online October 31, 2018;
© 2018 Korean Association of Psychoanalysis.

Sumin Hong1 and Jee Hyun Ha2

1Department of Psychiatry, Konkuk University Medical Center, Seoul, Korea
2Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul, Korea
Jee Hyun Ha, MD, PhD
Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Konkuk University, 120-1 Neungdong-ro, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul 05030, Korea
Tel: +82-2-2030-7569, Fax: +82-2-2030-7748, E-mail:
Received September 15, 2018; Revised September 25, 2018; Accepted October 2, 2018.
cc This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (https://creativecommons. org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
One of the most striking features of modern society in the 21st century, is increased levels of aggression. Aggression refers to aggressive or hostile behavior, and is manifested in suicide or an attack against others. Aggression in modern society is more accidental, reckless, and aimless than before. As more patients visit hospitals due to the serious problem of aggression control, we need to address the nature of this growing aggression. The authors analyzed sources and the nature of aggression, based on the movie ‘American Psycho.’ The main character of the movie, Patrick, is similar to many people today, with traits such as egotistical thinking, lack of empathy, demand for attention and admiration, and exploited and superficial relationships. Patrick’s aggression is in reaction to narcissistic injury. Through this, one can think of pathological narcissism, behind growing aggression in modern society. There are a number of social and environmental factors, attributable to increasing narcissism in modern society. Among them, change in parenting practices, and parent-child relationships, is likely to have affected increase in narcissism in terms of personality development. In conclusion, when treating patients exhibiting aggression in psychotherapy, it is critical to fully consider the possibility of pathological narcissism and its use in analysis.
Keywords : Aggression · Narcissism · Personality disorder · Film.

October 2018, 29 (4)
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