Philosophy:Multiplicity (psychology)

From HandWiki

Multiplicity is the phenomenon in which a person has multiple distinct personalities . This phenomenon can be used by Dissociative Identity Disorder, among other things.

Rita Carter says evidence for multiplicity abounds and is found in history, and that when an individual states that they have been taken over by a spirit, soul, or ghost, they are saying that they are experiencing another personality. She says that feeling happy and carefree while in the company of your friends, but less so at home with family, is an example of multiple personality styles, while this is not necessarily the case.[1] It is also sometimes possible to hear your other personalities talk to you in your head, if they are distinct enough.

Jung proposed: "The many contains the unity of the one without losing the possibilities of the many."[2]


Plato described the soul ("psyche") as having three parts, calling them Logos (rationality), Eros (erotic love), and Thymus (desire).[1] According to Carter, Shakespeare showed examples of this in his works of literature; characters like Hamlet and Macbeth had distinct personalities that differed throughout their respective works.[1] Carter says that Freud supported the notion of different personalities when he came up with the Id, Ego, and Superego, arguing that there is a split in the conscious and unconscious mind.[1]

Carter says that Italian psychologist Roberto Assagioli developed an approach to psychology called psychosynthesis, and thought many personalities that an individual is not consciously aware of may be present.[1] American psychologist John G. Watkins used hypnosis to bring out different personalities, as a method to study those personalities.[1]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Carter, Rita (March 2008). Multiplicity: The New Science of Personality, Identity, and the Self,. Little, Brown. ISBN 9780316115384. 
  2. Michael Vannoy Adams (2008). "Multiplicity". The Cambridge Companion to Jung. Cambridge University Press. p. 115. ISBN 9780521685009. 

Further reading

  • Mick Cooper, John Rowan (1999). The Plural Self: Multiplicity in Everyday Life. SAGE. ISBN 9780761960768. 
  • Ian Hacking (2000). What's Normal?: Narratives of Mental & Emotional Disorders. Kent State University Press. pp. 39–54. ISBN 9780873386531. 
  • Jennifer Radden (2011). "Multiple Selves". The Oxford Handbook of the Self. Oxford Handbooks Online. pp. 547 et seq.. ISBN 9780199548019.