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Thread: Sylvia Plath

  1. #21
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    More factoids:
    from this link
    In junior high, she continued to write and would publish her poems and drawings in the school newspaper. In high school she enrolled in the class of a tough English professor who challenged her abilities in the best of ways. In a 1949, Plath and another student from the English class co-authored a published response to an article in The Atlantic Monthly titled A Reasonable Life in a Mad World. The article stated that modern man must rely on the ability to reason to further society. Plath's response argued that, beyond reason, one needed to connect with and embrace inner divinity and spirituality to fully live...

    To finish out her high school career, Plath consistently received good grades and earned recognition and publication as a writer, artist and editor.
    And we kinda need some poetry links.

    Bitter Strawberries
    Mad Girl's Love Song
    November Graveyard

    The actual poetry does not take INFJ off the table imo. Very symbolic and a great deal of paradox. Wow. Bitter Strawberries reads like a microcosm of the war which is discussed in the poem. It shows an oppressive persistence of human dominance and complete lack of awareness of this state of things. The strawberries take on a death like quality. It combines the paradox of innocence and oppression. Mad Girl's Love Song is definitely an expression of inner torment from creating an inner world inconsistent with the external world. That's very NF. November Graveyard also reconciles paradox. The intensity of her emotional expression results from understatement, of expressing the absence of emotion:

    Quote Originally Posted by Plath
    The scene stands stubborn: skinflint trees
    Hoard last year's leaves, won't mourn, wear sackcloth, or turn
    To elegiac dryads, and dour grass
    Guards the hard-hearted emerald of its grassiness
    However the grandiloquent mind may scorn
    Such poverty. No dead men's cries

    Flower forget-me-nots between the stones
    Paving this grave ground. Here's honest rot
    To unpick the heart, pare bone
    Free of the fictive vein. When one stark skeleton
    Bulks real, all saints' tongues fall quiet:
    Flies watch no resurrections in the sun.

    At the essential landscape stare, stare
    Till your eyes foist a vision dazzling on the wind:
    Whatever lost ghosts flare,
    Damned, howling in their shrouds across the moor
    Rave on the leash of the starving mind
    Which peoples the bare room, the blank, untenanted air.
    This is the mind of the INFJ seen in these three poems. This doesn't mean she isn't yet another type, but i can't help but notice the intense presence of Ni. Of course i am no poet of much gift, but i will compare one of mine because it shows the principle of paradox, understatement, and exploring the void. Granted mine is crap by comparison, but it still makes a point, i hope. Try to look to principle over skill.

    Quote Originally Posted by me
    I lost myself in bliss, I lost myself in angst
    Each time waking up, engulfed in the same.

    With the clarity of dreaming on vacant, anguished face
    I become a river that eats away its banks


    With gluttonous hunger and empty embrace
    I drink in mountain peaks, and with the wind I race.

    Blistered with burning ice, cooled by winds of flame.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

    I want to be just like my mother, even if she is bat-shit crazy.

  2. #22
    unscannable Tigerlily's Avatar
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    I read "The Bell Jar" when I was 13 and instantly fell in love with her writing. I have always had a fascination with talented, deeply troubled individuals such as Vivienne Haigh-Wood, Edie Sedgewick, Nick Drake and Sylvia Plath to name a few.

    As for her type I would guess ISFJ.
    Time is a delicate mistress.

  3. #23
    Senior Member the state i am in's Avatar
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    apparently i missed it in the thread- why is she typed as isfj and not infj?

  4. #24
    Senior Member sonata's Avatar
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    I love Sylvia Plath. I had to do a research project on her, where I got into her character and pretended to be her for half an hour on a "radio" show. Being the typology nerd that I am, of course I tried to type her, and I immediately came up with INFJ.

    I think she has Fe rather than Fi because she had this enormous desire to fit in and to please others, exemplified by her belonging to a sorority of girls she felt alienated from, and her cheery "Letters Home" to her mother, projecting an entirely different personality. (I'm not saying that Fe always does this by any means, it's a lovely function, this is just one twisted manifestation). However, her Ni realized the inherent shallowness and posturing of this life. Ni is also evident in her poems, as Toonia pointed out.

    Also, I've read, probably on this board, that depressed INFPs are more likely to think about / dwell upon suicide, where depressed INFJs are more likely to actually attempt / succeed.

  5. #25
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the state i am in View Post
    apparently i missed it in the thread- why is she typed as isfj and not infj?
    I agree...I see dominant Ni....
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe

  6. #26
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    probably a bit late, but I have to say I really see her as INFJ as well.... not just because I can relate to her so much, but I definitely see Ni in her poetry, and, as has been stated, Fe in her (reported) behavior (as has been said, need to fit in, in contrast to her husband, e.g.). I also believe her outbursts to be somewhat typical for INFJs, and as far as I can judge that I see a seriousness in her which I find quite typical of INFJs.

  7. #27
    `~~Philosoflying~~` SillySapienne's Avatar
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    infx

    Though, I'd lean towards INFJ.
    `
    'Cause you can't handle me...

    "A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if nobody believes it." - David Stevens

    "That that is, is. That that is not, is not. Is that it? It is."

    Veritatem dies aperit

    Ride si sapis

    Intelligentle sparkles

  8. #28
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    I thought you might find this interesting, this is an interview with Plath
    by Peter Orr in 1962. I've had never found an recorded interview with her...

    YouTube - Sylvia Plath Interview - Part 1

  9. #29
    man-made neptunesnet's Avatar
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    She has such a strong voice. It strikes me as a little weird that I've imagined her having a more meek and docile voice. I guess I was projecting there. I really enjoy listening to her and I enjoyed that interview. Thanks.

  10. #30
    Member EnflamedHeartofSand's Avatar
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    There is an exerpt in one of Plath's biographies, quoting her longtime psychiatrist, who stated after her infamous mental collapse and suicide attempt, that Sylvia Plath was overusing her "T" - thinking function, which caused a major strain to her psyche. According to the Jungian tests her psychiatrist gave her, she determined that Sylvia was definitively an "intuitive (N), feeling (F) type.

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