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Kalilah Floyd

Freshman Comp II

Angela Jacobs

November 15,2017

"Leaving the Motel"

From a Freud psychoanalytic perspective, you view egos. No matter if they are super

egos or just a regular ego. The poem "Leaving the Motel" by writer W.D. Snodgrass uses a Freud

psychoanalytic perspective to help portray the wrong doings of adultery.

Like I stated before, psychoanalytic criticism is based off of the ego and mindset that the

speaker may have. In the poem you see and ego in one of the adults. The poem begins with one

adult telling the opposite adult to "check" and make sure everything is intact and that nothing is

left behind. With this being said, you begin getting an understanding that the two must not want

a trace of anything leading them back to the motel. Being said that they are at a motel and want

nothing behind it is safe to assume they are committing adultery.

According to Mays, Freudian criticism is based off of the literary work that does not exist

on its surface but in the mindset of the author. (1365) The main points of this critical approach

are symbolism, dreamlike imagery, emotional logic, and language. Psychoanalytic criticism is

used to focus on hidden meanings of the text instead of the form of the text. For example, the
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author, WD Snodgrass, never speaks on the wrongs of adultery. Yet, the poem only includes

many wrong doings of a couple with no regrets.

In the article "Extramarital sex: Prevalence and correlates in a national survey,"

Wiederman states that typically men are much more likely to commit adultery than woman. In

comparison, both men and women who deny committing adultery keep the same attitude about

knowing they did it. In this poem, Snodgrass lets us know that the adults are trying not to "leave

or take with them any clues for "others" (Line 13) Obviously, they want no one to find out they

were there but they have the same attitude about it throughout the whole story.

Also stated in the article, majority of the men and women that commit adultery admit that

it is "always wrong" yet twenty percent agree it is "only sometimes ok." Snodgrass portrays the

wrong of adultery by allowing the characters to have a very meaningful and precise ego.
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Weirderman, Michael W. Extramarital sex: Prevelance and correlates in a national

survey. Proquest, 26 Jan. 2012, search-proquest-


Mays, Kelly J. The Norton Introduction to Literature. W.W. Norton &

Co., 2017.