Steal this Thesis – Archetypal Expression in “The Kill”

I was thinking about animals that play with their prey after “the kill,” which may not have actually killed the prey but has disabled it to the point that there is zero chance of escape. The explanation I remember being given is that the animals are softening the meat they are about to eat, in a similar way that chefs use a wooden mallet to tenderize their meat.

No, I don’t think so. I’m thinking about the cats I’ve seen playing with their fatally wounded mice. And of the killer whales tossing the dead or nearly dead baby seals into the air like a soccer ball with a head shot. It occurred to me that what I’m witnessing cat-and-mousewith these animals with these situations is the same sort of “joy in extinguishing another’s life” that I’ve seen many times on the television series Criminal Minds, which follows a group that profiles serial killers, providing the background for the police to narrow their searches.

And so, if we’re following Jung’s understanding of the human psyche, this can be thought of as an archetypal expression. Graduate students could consider refining the archetypal qualities and perhaps renaming them (i.e., does the god of war need to be named Mars?). Anyway, this bubbling forth of joy in the destruction of the life of the prey should be considered an elemental force. Religious-minded people might call it Satan or evil. Whatever the name, it is this elemental force that is causing killer whales and cats to play with their prey.

By the way, Dominion is scheduled for release in November of this year? The wait is nearly over.


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