Monday, 31 March 2014

ESFJ - The Provider

Apologies for the delay, University term coming to an end creates a lot of deadlines / events / various things to be getting on with. However, let's continue...

Concluding the second quarter, we come to the Provider.

Above all, the Provider values Harmony. Often feeling great emotions, ESFJs have earnt their title through their innate ability to channel their feelings into the creation of a peaceful environment. This personality type depends on other people for a sense of well-being, and often goes out of their way to try and please others, though this causes an internal conflict, for the Performer wishes to be accepted for who they are, yet often find themselves taking on a new role to please another. They can often become hung up on social status and coupled with their dependance on other people, this can lead to them becoming needy and sensitive to criticism. ESFJs are often sensitive and warm, with keen perceptive abilities. Many Providers have a keen sense of duty, which leads them to become inflexible and dislike improvisation. Despite their emotional dependence, ESFJs are usually confidant and competent individuals, enjoying commanding roles and organising others. Providers are excellent at connecting with others and forming lasting bonds, though this does not impede their inherently practical nature.

Though claiming a demon to be harmonious might at first seem like a stretch, I would argue that Meg does have an common desire for peace than the vast majority of her hellspawned brethren. She has shown an aptitude for loyalty in her service to Lucifer, as well as a desire to become part of a great demonic family with the Devil acting as their leader. Meg has her eye on advancement within the hierarchy she sees him establishing and she very much takes him on as a father figure. In her interactions with the Winchesters, she is witty and light, even if they are surrounded by demonic corpses. At several points, especially towards Sam, she has shown a capacity for warmth and there have been moments when it would not be an exaggeration to say that she has connected to others, especially towards Castiel. Meg always likes to have a plan, rarely up for something completely spontaneous, though she likes to come across as if she is free and easy. Furthermore, though she is willing to bow to Lucifer, Meg loves to be in command, and power is something she evidently values very much.

Lord Renly Baratheon (or is that still King?) displays the central traits of an ESFJ. He is warm and caring, certainly towards Loras, and it is said that the people love him for he is a generous and benign lord, thus showing his ability to connect with others. In spite of his love for life's pleasures, Renly does posses a sense of duty and is shown to be inflexible when faced with the prospect of surrendering his claim to the throne to his elder brother. He is a cautious and sensitive individual, vulnerable to any criticisms he receives and rarely wishing to act without an established plan as well as being very dependant on the attention others give him. Though not necessarily proficient within it, he certainly seems to enjoy any command given to him.

One of the most loyal characters in the series, Kaiden Alenko is one of Commander Shepherd's oldest friends, for the two have served together on the Normandy. Though he does come to doubt the Commander during the second game (and rightly so), by the third game, his doubts begin to evaporate once again. Though he is quiet and cautious, he definitely depends on other people for his emotional well being, seemingly unable to cope without the attention of others. He's a practical man, able to handle himself well in a fight with his biotic abilities. Ultimately he is willing to slot into the team in whichever way the wish, wanting to contribute to creating a harmonious environment aboard the Normandy. He likes to plan, though is loyal enough to the Commander to trust his judgement, even when he does not quite fully understand the reasoning (most of the time).

Prince Charming
Loyal to his family and enjoying the trappings of command, a position for which he is seemingly very suited, Prince Charming displays great warmth and sensitivity to his family, with which he seems to have great interpersonal connectivity. He is a practically minded gent, always trying to get through with the task at hand, this, coupling with his sense of duty, gives him a great sense of dedication when he's fight for those who he values. He is very dependent on his family, more so than most, thus displaying the ESFJ neediness. When he comes under critical fire from a family member, Charming takes it very personally, often retreating or responding passive aggressively, though he does try to smooth things over as best he can. Ultimately, he simply wishes to be accepted by those close to him and believes he has earnt such acceptance through his displays of devotion. He can be closed-minded at times, disliking to move away from a course of action once he has set his mind to it.

Her main role within Cloud Atlas is as a representative of the Prescients, an advanced, yet threatened, culture when compared to the Valleysmen which she is visiting. Though she hails from this advanced civilisation, she cares very dearly for the Valleysmen and tries to further both of their interests, rather than outrightly favouring her own. She treats Zachary with warmth and sensitivity, though she is, at first, spurned. Though she seeks to accommodate their cultural views, she is willing to maneuver Zachary into taking her into the Devil's Ground, a place the Valleysmen have agreed never to trespass upon, thus showing that she is dedicated enough to her goal to be inflexible. She plans, hating the need to act spontaneously, though she is practically minded and more than able to handle herself in a fight, demonstrating an ability to do so even without her advanced technology. When the non-interference principle of her people would lead to the death of Zachary's niece, she becomes very vulnerable to his criticisms of her culture, leading to her breaking their rules, though not without furthering her own goals at the same time. Her goals are driven by a sense of duty she has towards her people, even though many of them see her mission as a fool's errand.

With a background as both a Bard and as a member of the Chantry, Leliana has definitely adopted some of the more charitable tenets of her faith. She seeks to bring relief and benefit to all those she can, thus displaying the Provider's key desire to help all, however she draws the line very sharply, unwilling to help those who openly move against certain doctrines of her faith, such as Maleficarum. Somewhat stubborn, she has a strong sense of duty - bound up with her religious devotions - and a great sense of loyalty to those whom she comes to love. As an artist, of sorts, she has a fondness for tales and songs, and it is through this medium and the knowledge of history and culture that it provides her with, that she is able to connect so closely with others and her environment. Truly, she desires to be respected for her religious experiences and her abilities, hating having to compromise matters of faith to encourage social cohesion. 

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

ESFP - The Performer

The next stop on our tour brings us to ESFP, the archetypical extrovert personality type: the Performer.

One word to describe the performer is bold (apologies for the slight pun). As an S type, the Performer seeks sensory experience, willing to try at least anything once and finding great joy in immersing themselves in extreme sensory activity. As all people, they have their comfort zone, but the ESFP is more willing than most to leap over this boundary. They are creative at heart, constantly striving for originality and hating the thought of conformity. This bestows them with a keen artistic sense. Socially, they are excellent, able to converse with others and connect with new people without difficulty. With such interest in sensation, ESFPs are often more practically minded, only caring for theory which has concrete results. Abstract topics and speculation are of little interest to the Performer. Often feeling great emotions, ESFPs have earnt their title through their innate ability to channel their feelings into evocative acts of expression, often as story tellers, more through drama than through written word. This personality type depends on other people for a sense of well-being, making them vulnerable to criticism. Therefore, some ESFPs despise conflict. With such a wide array of experiences to discover, Performers often lack focus and additionally find it difficult to plan in advance, archetypical of P types.

For this type we have: Lucifer, Jaime, Jack, Hook, Yoona-939 and Varric

Supernatural is perhaps one of the few series in which I can legitimately be talking about the Devil as a character for analysis. As one of the oldest Archangels, it may be difficult to discuss him in terms of mere human psychometrics. But, we shall try. 
Well, the first thing to say about Lucifer is that he is a very emotional being. He feels very strongly, though he shows it very rarely, instead channelling it into his captivating performance. Undeniably charismatic, Lucifer is good with people, able to get under their skin and manipulate them with their wants and desires, he is observant. He is, afterall, the Devil. Fundamentally, Lucifer is a sensitive character, driven by his inability to accept his family situation and his vulnerability is no more acutely exposed in his reaction to Gabriel's taunting. Despite his reputation and ominous presence, he is hardly an excellent planner, for his army of demons, all seeking to further the apocalypse, were unable to really make that much progress when it comes to actualising the end of days. 

A very witty individual, Jaime Lannister is certainly socially adept, able to read and adapt to most situations (though one prominent failure did cost him his hand). He is bold and outspoken in certain situations, willing to banter with Ned Stark and his siblings, though unwilling to challenge his father or others who have evident authority. Jaime is a practical man, often mocking emotions, which he sees as being feminine and inappropriate in a man's world. (Not something I endorse). Jaime is sensitive to the opinions of those he loves, notably Cersei and has shown himself unwilling to enter into conflict with her. On the whole, however, Jaime lives for conflict in the physical, warrior sense, whilst avoiding any kind of emotional confrontation. He often acts on instinct and impulse and has displayed little ability to plan ahead. 

Here we have a character who is at once very hardcore and yet extremely sensitive. If scorned, she certainly feels it, though she translates any kind of sadness or regret into anger, attempting to come across as aloof when inside she is very hurt by the wounds others have inflicted upon her. This impulsive behaviour makes her a very poor planner, fixing her firmly in the P category. She tries to push any feeling she might experience away and act in a strictly practical way and though she can certainly be described as pragmatic, she cannot be described as a T type, for her emotions run too deep. Jack displays the aesthetic sensitivity and desire for expression which are consumate to the Performer, literally transforming her body into a work of art with each individual tattoo holding great significance. 

Originally, Hook was driven by the bold nature intrinsic to an ESFP. He sailed the seas, crossing into different realms, living for adventure and new experiences, lapping up all he could. When he fell for the wife of Rumplestiltskin, he displayed passion and adoration, betraying his depth of emotion, this turning to rage at her death. In his revenge, he has tapped into the inherent pragmatism of this personality type, using unconventional methods to reach his goals, ever the creative. Socially, he is suave and observant, able to read other people with the success of a salesman and even showing himself capable of manipulating them. He is, however, more sensitive to the words and deeds of others than he is willing to let on.

Fundamentally driven by her desire to be liberated from the diner and to experience the life of the consumers, Yoona is as bold and creative as any other Performer. In her manipulation of Seer Rhee, she has displayed an ability to understand the desires and emotions of others as well as manipulate them to her own advantage, making her a pragmatic individual. Whilst she has shown a proficiently for caution and planning, Yoona's need for new experiences was too great and she was unable to temper her impulsive nature, resulting in her death. 

Creativity and entrepreneurship are central to Varric, for he is driven by his desire for gold in part, but his desire for a fulfilling life, filled with stories for the most part. He is impulsive, though able to temper himself when the situation requires. Practically minded, he is able to assist Hawke in amassing to funds for the Deep Roads expedition and his observant nature is revealed in the deep insights he provides into the other characters. He is certainly sensitive and avoids conflict, for should Hawke chose to insult him, he rarely fights back, though certainly feels the sting of his friend's words. 

Sunday, 9 March 2014

ESTJ - The Enforcer

The second of our ES personalities is the Enforcer.

Primarily, ESTJs seeks to create order and they are highly dedicated to this goal and any of the steps they feel they must take in order to establish whatever it is they are seeking. They often posses strong wills, part of their commitment to their goals, as well as a directness which often leads them into confrontation with others. Often, Enforcers are loyal to those they see as their friends (their friends often sharing, or at least not opposing, the system of order the Enforcer is trying to create). Due to their dedication, ESTJs are often stubborn and find it hard to relax. While they are also known for the judgemental natures, Enforcers often care greatly for their social standing, which are often made more difficult not only due to their blunt natures but also due to their inability to express themselves. Enforcers are often immersed in certain traditions and consider unconventional methods with caution.

The six characters selected for this role are: Dean Winchester, Cersei Lannister, the Illusive Man, Cora, Old Georgie and Fenris.

Firstly, I will make it clear that Dean is a very complex character and I shall acknowledge that he has changed greatly over the nine seasons Supernatural has run. However, I think that one thing which has remained consistent within his character is his devotion to his cause. The order Dean wishes to reify is that of humanity. He wants to cull all the Supernatural monsters and beasts and allow people to live in peace. He is dedicated to this, risking his life to bring it about and he is also judgemental of those who he considers to be non-human. Upon discovering that one of his closer friends had become a Werewolf, he immediately treated him with suspicion, in spite of the fact that they had previously shared a cause, and therefore Dean's loyalty. He is extremely stubborn, even going as far as to kill an innocent woman, simply on principle. However, he is somewhat tempered, not killing the woman's child who exists as the same kind of monster and even liasing with a vampire for a brief period of time. Tact is not something that Dean possesses in vast amounts, though he is able to act reasonably well, many are able to see straight through him and he has a habit of saying the wrong thing at the wrong time and being confrontational. Relaxation is something that Dean struggles with, though he does occasionally let off steam through random sexual encounters or drink, though most of the time he simply collapses from exhaustion rather than properly resting. Emotions are not something that Dean is able to deal with, often taking several episodes, if not entire seasons, to reach the point at which he is able to express himself. Finally, the point of being uncomfortable with the unconventional somewhat applies here, for there are some solutions Dean is simply unwilling to consider.

Cersei Lannister
The order Cersei wishes to establish is one in which everybody is subservient to House Lannister, or, more specifically, her, She is willing to do anything to reach this goal, such is her dedication, more than willing to kill even those who declare loyalty to her. For Cersei, only her own blood is not expendable. Though she conceives of herself as a Machiavellian genius, Cersei is far more blunt than she believes herself to be, having gained quite the reputation due to her outspoken sense of entitlement. She is certainly judgemental of those she considers to be her lessers or her enemies, though for Cersei the two are often the same thing. She rarely relaxes, even when she is not actively scheming she's worrying or over thinking something and she is inept at expressing healthy emotions. She often flies into rages and shouts at others, though she is unable to truly express her love for her children or her brother, whom are the only people she cares for. Though she would deny it, Cersei is exceptionally preoccupied with her social standing, which she realises, on some level, to be more precarious than she had feared. 

The Illusive Man
Leader of fanatic, human-based activist group Cerberus, the Illusive Man acknowledges the threat the Reapers pose to the galaxy, but does not see them as something to be destroyed, but appropriated. Though he denies allegations of racism, the Illusive Man seems exclusively interested in remodelling the politics of the galaxy to place humanity in the dominant role. He sees this as revenge for the failure of the Council Races to acknowledge humanity, though in truth he has a deep seated, judgemental prejudice against non-humans. His dedication to this goal cannot be questioned, for he is willing to implant himself and others with Reaper-tech, as well as allow countless people to die, even if they are not directly in his way. He is strong-willed, though not enough to resist indoctrination and, in truth much of his dedication comes from having been so acutely manipulated by the Old Machines. The only emotion he is able to express is anger and, if his implants are anything to go by, we can take it that he spends little time relaxing and not consumed by his goals.

Fundamentally, Cora is driven out of a concern for social standing. Originally a miller's daughter and scorned by some member of the nobility, she has since become consumed with the desire to rule over others, establishing an order in which she and her blood are respected and praised above anybody else. She treats her daughter, Regina, as little more than a pawn in her game, manipulating her openly and forcing her to obey her own will, leading to many of Regina's psychological problems. Cora is direct and stubborn, unwilling to relent when it comes to gaining power, or whatever else she seeks in order to achieve it. Once she has established herself as Queen, she despises anything which challenges her convention and her power, typical of an Enforcer. Cora is undeniably judgemental, for she has a very firm divide between those who she sees as equal and those who she sees as lesser, the majority of people occupying the second category. In terms of emotions, Cora has quite literally removed her own heart, thus stunting her ability to feel, let alone express her feelings.

Old Georgie
Discussion of this character may be rather limited, for he is less a being in his own right and more of a creature of myth whose voice exists as part of the psychology of another character. He is literally the devil, enforcing a code of morality amongst the Valleysmen, most notably the instruction to avoid Mauna Sol, which is the devil's ground. He is direct in his proclamations against some of Zachary's behaviour and unrelenting in his judgement for breaking the moral code he exists to enforce. Anything which breaks the conventions he exists to protect is viewed as a threat and something which should be mercilessly destroyed.

Judgemental does not begin to fully capture the key component of Fenris' character: his hatred of magic and those who use it. Shaped from past experiences, his attitudes are somewhat justified, though he still treats all mages as entirely evil, even if there is no evidence to suggest immortality. No matter the evidence, he stubbornly protests that all magic is evil. Should any mage liberate themselves from what they see as their oppression and challenge the convention, Fenris demonises them and treats them with mistrust, even though he is somewhat able to see their situation as abusive. He is dedicated to his goal of ridding the world of magic, willing to kill innocents and even his own sister. Even if the occasion may call for tact, Fenris is more often direct and overt, unwilling to quiet his beliefs. As a slave, he has suffered emotional stunting, thus he finds intimacy and relaxation difficult, taking years to open up to those who he considers his closest friends.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

The Adventurer - ESTP

To begin the second quarter of our jaunt through MBTI, we shall be discussing the ESTP (Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving) personality, otherwise known as the Adventurer.
These characters are driven by a deep-rooted impulsive spontaneity and a desire to experience the thrill of being. They are naturally adept at learning how to "play the game", whatever that might be, allowing them a keen insight when it comes to dealing with other people, rendering them the ideal salesman character. Due to their yearning for experience, ESTPs are realists, living in the present moment and relishing all they can. Adventurers are often accused of having shallow feelings, though this does not prevent them from feeling deeply for a select few. This shallowness bestows upon them a certain base quality. They are naturally witty individuals, often possessing a way with words and excellent comic timing. In spite of there impulsive nature, ESTPs have a detached rationality, often appearing to become completely different people when the occasion comes.
The characters selected for this type are: Crowley, Tyrion, James Vega, Red/Ruby, Timothy Cavendish and Alistair.

The King of Hell is often described as a salesman character due to this ability to read his mark and play the game, in this case coaxing mortals into making deals which land them in hell, to a very high standard. He is exceptionally witty, with excellent timing, producing positively scathing remarks at exactly the right moment. However, much of his humour is basic, often relying on sexual and homoerotic jokes which, while funny, do not quite display the true extent of his wit. Crowley is also relatively spontaneous, though he is more securely ruled by his rationality, without which he would have never been able to secure his position as King of Hell. He lives in the moment less than most ESFPs, though does display their characteristically shallow feelings.

Whilst he exhibits a degree of control and planning, as is requisite of one in his position, Tyrion is a free spirit at heart. Demonised, to an extend literally, by the tradition into which he is born, Tyrion has a longing for freedom, which instills in him a witty spontaneity (enough to warrant an entire book devoted to his wit). He's an excellent talker, his voice and persuasive ability being amongst he greatest talents. When the Tribesmen of the Vale come to take his life, he somehow manages to leave the situation with a new army. Indeed, he exhibits the typical gamesmanship of an Adventurer, showing himself as quite the player of the Game of Thrones, undoubtedly due to his sense of realism. Tyrion is also very basic at times, his main weakness being women and all the pleasures they may bring him. In spite of his emotional involvement, Tyrion has displayed the capacity to act with detached rationality, though this ability is not without limit. Finally, I would class Tyrion as a thrill-seeker, as he seeks out new experiences, such as pissing off the edge of the wall as well as his many liasons with whores.

James Vega
James is definitely a realist, living in the present and very practically minded. Due to his past experiences, documented in an animated film, he has set himself to the task of fighting the Reapers and, whilst the situation might become steeped in heroism for some, he seems to be in it simply for the end goal, not for the glory it might bring him. He seeks out thrilling, physical experiences, indicated by his constant use of the Normandy for exercise (and the man is built like a truck, let's be honest) and he displays great enjoyment during battle. Though he has displayed strong emotions, James seems able to be detached and rational in some situations.

Red / Ruby
Sheltered in upbringing, Red displayed a desire for new experiences from a young age, a desire only increased by Granny's oppressive manner. She desperately wants her own liberty, displayed by her reasonably "out there" style of dress whilst within Storybrooke, and when she gains a mastery over her "Wolf-thing", she enjoys charging through the Enchanted Forest, seeking her thrill. She is spontaneous and impulsive, though she respects authority, yet this is not for a respect for authority as much as respect for those who hold it at a personal level. She is both reasonable and practical.

Often treating life as a game, Cavendish plays to win and is certainly not a poor player. He was able to liberate himself and his friends from Aurora House through manipulation of the staff and was able to turn Dermont's actions to his advantage. When he has the capacity, he allows himself to act with great spontaneity, as displayed when he comes into money and then proceeds to adopt an affluent life-style. As a publisher and manipulator, Cavendish has displayed a shrewd, salesman-like quality, as often attributed to the Adventurer. Finally, Cavendish has notably shallow emotions, though he does show some development towards a state in which he is able to form lasting relations.

Despite having a certain dream-like quality, Alistair has been forced, mainly due to circumstance, to be practically minded and focused on the present. However, this has not rendered him predominantly serious, for he maintains an excellent sense of humour, consistently displaying a gut-level instinct as to when to make certain remarks to maximise their effect. This makes him exceptionally likeable, allowing others to warm to him, thus rendering him an excellent salesman should he chose to turn his hand to it.

Monday, 3 March 2014

A Brief Pause

Unfortunately I have suffered from terrible technical failure this week, so the production of the following entries has been slowed. However, I have had time to produce this chart, using statistics from (check them out, they're fantastic for MBTI resources and explanations) which shows the percentage population for each personality type.

It's interesting to take a look at.

I am already at work on the next entry and hope to upload in the next few days. Until then, here's something to ponder.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

The Protector - ISFJ

This entry shall complete the first quarter of the Myer's-Brigg's entries. Here, we shall be examining ISFJ (Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Judging), dubbed "The Protector".
Service is the defining feature of an ISFJ's life and, in a strong sense, it is what they live to do. A Protector will only feel comfortable when they are able to devote themselves to another individual or a cause, always casting themselves in useful, serving roles. This work-ethic makes ISFJs highly dependable, always producing good quality results as well as giving them the capacity for deep-seated loyalty, though this is more often devoted to individuals rather than organisations. Their desire to support and assist others leads to family having a huge role in their lives, with the Protector often seeking to put them before his or herself. They are awful at delegating, preferring to do all the work themselves, knowing that they are able to do it to a high standard and often display keen analytical skills. Finally, ISFJs commonly keep their observations to themselves, though they will share them should the need arise or should one of their close friends ask them for input.
The six characters I have selected for this role are: Kevin, Varys, Liara, Mulan, Isaac and Aveline.
As a prophet of the Lord, Kevin is divinely selected for service. Though he takes some convincing to begin with, he eventually settles into his assisting role which, in spite of the stress it causes him, he appears to be willing enough to endure. He shows evidence of having developed loyalty to the Winchesters, though his ultimate loyalty is to his mother, family taking the typically centric role. He is supportive, even at an emotionally level and often keeps himself to himself, though he does open up when prompted. Kevin is certainly an analytic individual and this is shown not only in his ability to interpret the tablets, but also in his knowledge of mathematics, which he was studying prior to his reification as a prophet of the Lord.
Lord Varys serves the realm above all else and, though he wields considerable influence, he seems to use very little of it to further his own position, instead furthering a broader goal of attempting to protect the realm from war. He is loyal, yet uncommonly for a Protector, he is not necessarily loyal to individuals but to the institutions those people represent. He is loyal to the crown and to the realm it protects, but not to King Robert or King Joffrey. He is analytic, displayed in his ability to coordinate the extensive networks of knowledge he has access to and turn the sheer amount of information to his advantage. Though his role is that of advisor, Varys cannot be accused of not keeping things to himself, as he has so many secrets and so much information that he keeps concealed, using them only when to do so furthers his cause of serving the realm.
Liara is an archaeologist, giving her already extensive analytic abilities, which are only improved by her becoming the Shadow Broker. She has an exceptional work-ethic, which is exemplified in the third game by her ceaselessly working on projects to protect the galaxy from the Reapers. A conversation with her in a café on the Citadel reveals that even on her "time off" she is working. Trusting in her own abilities, she does not seek to pass off any of the work-load to others, instead seeking to do as much of it as she can by herself. She is at first a shy character, unwilling to share her thoughts unless invited, though this becomes more of an obstacle as the plot develops and Liara is forced to come out of her shell further. She is reasonably family oriented, influenced by her mother, though she is willing to oppose her when matters require it. Liara turns the Normandy crew into a pseudo family, which she then seeks to protect and nature and serve.
Bound by an oath of service and protection, Mulan is introduced to us as a character who is content to devote herself to the service of others. She develops strong personal loyalty, and more, for Aurora and seeks to support others, even those to whom she is not bound by oath. She is reasonably outspoken, but it is not uncommon for her to keep her thoughts to herself. As a talented fighter, she is more than dependable, able to fulfil her oath of protection. Overall, Mulan is a healthy example of an ISFJ.
As a minor character, not much is known of Isaac and he is given limited development in the novel. We can see his desire to be helpful, for he is quick to try and help Luisa as she hunts for information as to the conspiracy, though this is perhaps due to his romantic interest in her. Clearly, however, Isaac is capable of developing intense personal loyalty, specifically toward Luisa, the strength of which is enough to lead him into risking, and eventually losing, his own life. As a scientist, he can also be considered a likely analytic figure, though this is only hinted at in the small portion of the novel in which his voice is presented to the reader. Finally, he evidently keeps his opinions to himself, for he does not speak out about the likely failure of the reactor, not until his loyalty pushes him into it.
Aveline cares for her husband and, though not much time is given to his character in the game, with his death occurring rather near its beginning, it is clearly a huge loss for her. Should she eventually enter into a relationship later in the game, however, further evidence is seen of her devotion to those who she considers to be her family. Aveline is loyal to her guards, though this is not loyalty to the office of the Viscount, though she naturally holds it in high regard, but rather a more personal loyalty to the guardsmen serving under her. She is dependable and hard working, risking herself in the political scene in order to get the job done. Her dedication leads to great weariness, for she seems unwilling to delegate her responsibilities to those beneath her, not a sign of disbelief in their abilities, but a quiet certainty in her own capacities. Aveline is supportive of her friends, even if she might not approve of their choices or methods.
That draws to a close our coverage of the IS (Introverted Sensing) personality types. In the next entry, I will be taking a look at ESTP (Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving), the Adventurer, the first of our ES types.

Monday, 24 February 2014

The Composer - ISFP

Entry number three in my whistle-stop tour of MBTI brings us to consider ISFP (Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Perceiving), more commonly entitled “The Composer”.
Important to this personality type is the desire to be free from constraint, a feature which is almost always central to anyone fitting this type. This desire to be free gives this type a keen connection to conventions, often leading them to become preoccupied with them. ISFPs always know what is going on around them, for they live for the present and remain in tune with it. Commonly, Composers have difficulty with standardised methods of learning, instead seeking to learn by experience and practice, which they are able to do efficiently, this forming a huge part of their lives. When they discover a skill which they enjoy, an ISFP will devote hours of their time to perfecting it, not out of a sense of duty, but out of genuine enjoyment. This heavy reliance on experience allows them to excel at the physical, yet also leaves them with a desire for it, imbuing them with a passion for sensation. In turn, this causes ISFPs to occasionally display a risk-taking and competitive streak. ISFPs internalise their emotions, which leads to occasional outbursts which can appear episodic in nature, for they leave as quickly as they arrive. Due to this, many Composers are mistaken for extroverts. Composers are excellent performers, able to get the task done, though rarely do they find the need to speak of it afterwards. A final point of note for this type is their desire for the ideal, one which is self-defined.
The six characters I have placed in this role are: Bobby Singer, Jon Snow, Legion, Henry, Robert Frobisher and Merrill.

Bobby Singer
Whereas most ISFPs keep their fingers on the pulse in terms of fashion and gossip, Bobby’s focus on the present is expressed through his connections within the community of Hunters. He serves as a coordinator for many Hunters and is always aware of the rumours passing between them. In spite of his immersion within this community, Bobby is fiercely independent and I do not doubt that, given the option, he would retire to be on his own. He is certainly one to internalise his emotions, unwilling to share most of them, even with Sam and Dean. However, on occasion, he suffers from an outburst, though, in typical ISFP style, these leave as fast as they arrive. For a middle-aged man, Bobby displays remarkable physical prowess, which is not uncommon for this personality type. Though he is able to achieve much, he rarely speaks of it afterwards. He is a humble man. Interestingly, he is well-versed in monster lore, though he did not learn this in a traditional way, instead devoting his time to it and learning through experience.

Jon Snow
As a relatively competent character, in terms of his sociability, one might be tempted to consider Jon Snow an extrovert, though this, I believe would be a mistake, and not an uncommon one, considering his position as an ISFP. From the outset, we can see his desire to be free. He has been raised in a noble house, true enough, though his adoptive mother is less than welcoming (Catelyn, oh how you have let me down!) and his position as a bastard does not endear him to others. When he takes his brief journey into the world of the Wildlings, we see his desire for liberty come to fruition. The experiential learning, competitive attitude and willingness to take risks are all displayed when he first arrives at the wall, with his almost arrogant interactions with the other recruits, and when he assumes the position of commander. He excels at the physical and sensory temptation has always been something he has contended with, though this becomes intensified during his tryst with Ygritte. Jon keeps his emotions locked inside, though has been known to release them on occasion. He is idealistic, to his own standard, though perhaps his desire to strive towards this is tempered by the harsh reality of the world in which he lives.

It is slightly more difficult to discuss a character whose modus vitae is so different from our own, perhaps even more so considering the fact that Legion is not only a machine, but somehow related to a collective or consensus. Regardless, I think there is a case to be made for placing Legion in this role and besides, I could never omit it from any chart involving Mass Effect characters, it is too wonderful! To begin with, Legion expresses the central desire to be free. In his case, the desire is closely linked to the stigma surrounding his kind, the Geth, which he believes (I would say correctly) to be misplaced. Much of what Legion strives to do is to integrate the Geth with the rest of the civilised galaxy. This task is a great one and requires a huge amount of risk, which it willingly faces, another sign of support for the role of Composer. In this case, it is driven towards a personalised ideal. As a machine, Legion’s emotions become slightly more difficult to discuss than others’, though I would argue that it certainly has something resembling them and that it often keeps that under control, though does express them at a few points. Often, the emotion is a form of excitement or distress. Legion is also exceptionally able to perform physical tasks, such as the operation of a sniper rifle, though once he has performed, he does not reflect on it.

If there is something going on in Storybrooke, it is more than likely that Henry knows about it. He is involved in the lives of everybody else, forming a central point in the community, occasionally serving to tie others together. Furthermore, he lives in the present in the sense that he is willing to overlook another’s past, forgiving Regina in spite of the many acts of evil she has committed. His love of stories has led him to devoting hours of time reading about them, having memorised at least the general outline of almost every tale within his book. Additionally, Henry is idealistic, seeking to create harmony between people who have long histories together. Henry is also a relatively quiet character, keeping his emotions in most of the time, though able to express them on occasion.

Robert Frobisher
Though he is an actual composer, Robert fits this personality type in more than just name. On first examination, he seems to have the requisite social confidence to be considered an extrovert, though I think that we should be cautious in placing him into this category, for the majority of the material which might give this impression is his private correspondence with his lover, which will be more open than usual. He has the requisite desire for freedom, though rather than independence, he is largely defined by his desire to have enough freedom to impress the conventional structures of society, of which he is largely aware. He is involved with the musical world in the sense that he knows what is going on, even if he himself is not centrally involved. He is willing to take risks, evidenced not only by his relationships with Sixsmith, Eva and Jocasta, but also in his seeking out placement with Vyvyan Ayrs. His three relationships are evidence of his enjoyment of sensory activity, in the form of sex, and also of another ISFP trait: the desire to live out, rather than think about, Id experiences. Needless to say, his love of music is clear within the text and he could only have achieved such a ability through spending hours in practice.

As an Elven Keeper, Merrill is somewhat in tune with nature, which is a trait associated with some kinds of ISFP character. Of course, as a Composer, she desires to be free and in her case this desire extends to her entire people. She has given herself a quest, an ideal to be pursued, which is the rediscovery and restoration of the elven people, whom she considers to have been unfairly pushed to the edges of extinction, with servitude or exile from mainstream society being their only real options. In order to reach this goal, she is willing to take risks, the most evident of these dealing with demons and blood magic, with which she experiments and learns through a process of trial and error, rather than learning by rote. She is a mage of no small talent, yet she does not brag, performing and then falling silent as ISFPs are prone to do. Merrill is a quiet character, though she does have the occasional outburst of excitement and enthusiasm, though notably she often falls quiet at points where one might expect her to offer input. Curiously, whilst Merrill definitely loves her people and devotes hours of her time to fulfilling her goal, which involves honing her magical skill, this is mixed with a sense of duty, thus giving her a double motive, extending beyond the basic personality indicator.

The next entry will concern The Protector – ISFJ (Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Judging) and shall be the last entry for the IS profiles. After that, we’ll be taking a look at the ES (Extroverted Sensing) profiles.