Ethical Analysis of “A Beautiful Mind”
“A Beautiful mind” is a story based on the life of John Forbes Nash, who is a famous mathematician. Unfortunately, he is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia that majorly affects his personal and social life. Schizophrenia is a psychological disorder in which the patient’s ability to function is impaired by severely distorted beliefs, perceptions, and thought processes (Hockenbury, 2010).
John Nash, the main character, faces many challenges in his professional life as well as in his personal life. His friends who later become his colleagues think that he is just plain crazy. They also find him entertaining. However, they cannot resist looking down on him for his strange behavior, difficulties with deadlines, and hardship with women. John is often distracted by visual hallucinations, experiences involuntary movements, and has issues communicating with others appropriately. Despite his illness, John Nash proves the Brouwer’s fixed point theorem while he is still attending Princeton University, and he finally earns his peers’ and his professor’s respect. He marries a graduate student, Alicia. She does not have any knowledge of John’s mental disorder until his condition begins to worsen and he becomes institutionalized and diagnosed with schizophrenia. She loves him and feels obligated to take care of him even though John endangers her and their baby’s life as well. She realizes that staying with Nash is a major responsibility; nevertheless, she decides to care for him and to deal with the consequences. Unfortunately, schizophrenia is a complex and misunderstood mental condition, sometimes resulting in society’s intolerance for those suffering from this illness, including John Nash. Society often views schizophrenia as a stigma or disgrace. Also, because schizophrenia is not viewed as a biological disease, schizophrenics often become outcasts of society. Schizophrenics are often dehumanized, avoided, and feared. So what is the difference between normal and abnormal?
In the movie “A Beautiful Mind,” normal means to be able to live a normal life, care for one-self, properly communicate with others, have real friends, complete work and assignments on time, and–‒most importantly–‒be able to tell the difference between reality and fantasies. John Nash’s friends, his wife, his psychologist, his professors, and students are all considered normal in the movie. On the other hand, John is the one who is abnormal because of his mental illness. John Nash is not able to properly care for himself and often forgets to eat. He is extremely obsessed with his work and his mission to serve his country, and this obsession results in his frequently missing classes, being late for dinner, and being forgetful. He has inappropriate behavior and strong negative emotions, such as anger and fear. He experiences distorted thoughts, hallucinations, and hardship with relationships.
The purpose of the movie “A Beautiful Mind” is...