he Psychopathic Traits of Brady Hartsfield in Mr.Mercedes by Stephen King


  • Faradilla Sandi
  • Femmy Dahlan
  • Al Azwad Fauzan


oke-width: 0px; "> This study aims to analyze one of the characters, Brady Hartsfield, in Stephen King’s novel entitled Mr. Mercedes. Brady Hartsfield experiences a tough life together with his mother and younger brother since the death of his father. With the death of the father, the family not only undergoes financial problems but also shows increasing signs of personality disorder, especially Brady Hartsfield. Brady’s character shows psychopathic signs since childhood. There are some factors that may cause traits of psychopath. Therefore, the purposes of the study are (1) to describe the causing factors of the main character's psychopathic traits, and (2) to describe psychopathic traits of the main character. This research performs psychology of literature. Wellek and Warren state that psychology of literature are : (1) the psychological study of the writer, as type and as individual, (2) the study of the creative process, (3) the study of the psychological types and laws present within works of literature, and (4) the effects of literature upon its readers (audience psychology). This study used the third approach which is the study of the character. Since the character shows psychopathic traits, Robert Hare’s classification of psychopathic feature is applied. Hare states that psychopaths have several characteristics, which are: (1) Glib and Superficial, (2) Egocentric and Grandiose, (3) A Lack of Remorse or Guilt, (4) Lack of Empathy, (5)Deceitful and Manipulative, (6) Shallow Emotions, (7) Impulsive, (8) Poor Behavior Controls, (9) Need for Excitement, (10) Lack of Responsibility, (11) Early Behavior Problems, (12) Adult Antisocial Behavior and (13) Criminal Versatility. Then also Hare states that psychopaths have several
causes, which are: (1) Nature, (2) Nurture, and (3) An Interactive Model: Nature and Nurture. The research is a qualitative research. It is conducted on the close reading technique based on a psychology of literature approach. Close reading is a significant exploration where the sign is seen at the first reading in a work. Data collection techniques carried out by: (1) Read the novel repeatedly, (2) check the psychology terms in psychology dictionary, (3) notes the data found, (4) classify the data based on the causing factors and the psychopathic traits of the main character (5) analyze and interpret the data based on theory (6) draw conclusion. In this study the writer found the causing factors of Brady’s psychopath personality disorder. There are three causing factors, namely: Firstly, nature which consists of inconsiderate and insensitive (2) and violent (2), second, nurture which consists of emotional abuse (2) and poverty (3) and finally, an interactive models: nature and nurture which consists of lying and manipulative (2), educated violence from his mother (3), and the experience of murder with his mother (2). Meanwhile, the characteristics of Brady's psychopathic traits, are: Firtsly, Glib and Superficial which consists of charming (4) and witty (3), second, Egocentric (1) and Grandiose
(3), third, Lack of Empathy which consists of heartless (2) and insult(2), fourth, Deceitful and Manipulative which consists of lying (4) and manipulative (5), fifth, poor behavior controls which consists of threats (2) and anger(3), sixth, Lack of Responsibility (2), and seventh, criminal
versatility which consists of steal(2) and kill (4). Therefore, from the data found it can be deduced that Brady's main cause is from his mother and genetic. The writer can see that the role of a mother is very important in educating a child and genetically can be a affect child’s character. It can be proven in the case of Brady who has deviant behavior from his mother's upbringing and his mother has symptoms of psychopath. Character’s development it can be seen from the seventh characteristics that greatly affect the life of Brady. From 13 of Hare’s psychopathic features, Brady has 7 psychopathic traits, but the most dominated psychopathic feature are glib and superficial which consists of charming and witty and deceitful and manipulative which consists of lying and manipulative. In conclusion, Brady’s psychopathic traits is inherited from his mother, causing him to already have a psychopathic sign from an early age. However the development of his psychopath is increasing from his mother’s bad upbringing.
Keywords: Psychopathic traits, nature, nurture, charming, manipulative

Author Biography

Faradilla Sandi

Jurusan Sastra Asia Timur