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The Schizotypy of Willy Wonka

PsycCRITIQUES , Volume 51 (10) – Mar 8, 2006


American Psychological Association
Copyright © 2006 by American Psychological Association
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The Schizotypy of Willy Wonka


<p> Schizotypy refers to the personality characteristics and behaviors of individuals who might be classified as exhibiting a schizophrenia spectrum disorder—a class of disorders ranging from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 's ( DSM–IV 's; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) schizotypal personality disorder to the International and Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 's (World Health Organization, 1992) syndrome of schizotypy to a variety of subthreshold schizophrenic diagnoses (Parnas, Licht, & Bovet, 2005). The prefix schizo also refers to the state of being split or fragmented. Regardless of classificatory debates, schizotypy is characterized by odd or eccentric patterns of affectivity and cognition, interpersonal withdrawal, transient psychotic experiences, and distortions in the experience of the self. In the recently released Charlie and the Chocolate Factory , director Tim Burton and star Johnny Depp team up to present one of the most sophisticated and entertaining portrayals of a schizotypal personality in film: Mr. Willy Wonka, chocolatier. How could it fail? In the last 15 years, the director and the actor (often together) have brought to life some of film's most peculiar characters and settings: pirate Jack Sparrow (Bruckenheimer & Verbinski, 2003), Edward Scissorhands (Burton, 1990), Ed
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