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Essentials of Psychology

Mike and Marty Scanlon, the Unlikely Twins

Essentials of Psychology SSC130

Mike and Marty Scanlon, the Unlikely Twins

  1. How Freud would explain the personality differences between Mike and Marty Scanlon

Freud would argue that the different personalities between the two twins Marty and Mike are motivated by unconscious, the part of the body that contains instincts, urges, feelings, and memories of which they are not aware (Santrock, 1995). The psychodynamic unconscious is driven by motivations, which implies that its content is not subject to forgetfulness. Starting with the id, which is present at birth and it contains personal instincts, an individual develops the ego and superego as the structure of his personality. As a child, Marty’s instincts drove him into withdrawal and studying. Thus, he developed the personality of choosing few friends and working hard in school. He grew up with the same personality of minding his own development, got married, bore children, and made plans of family development. As for Mike, he was born an extrovert, with his instincts driving him to seek attention through vandalism and fighting. He developed this trait into adulthood, and he now fights in bars. He derives pleasure in causing chaos.

  • How I would rate Mike and Marty Scanlon on the Big five personality traits

With regard to the Big Five Personality traits (Rentfrow, 2012), Mike has a higher percentage of extraversion than Marty. He is very sociable while Marty is shy and prefers to stay alone. Marty has a higher percentage of agreeableness than Mike. Marty is able to make friends and sustain them but Mike likes fighting and destroying property, and even his school teachers never liked him. Marty is more conscientious than Mike because he is very organized and hard working. Mike is disorganized and reckless because he does not know how to maintain friendships. In addition, he does not care how his children survive since all his time and earnings are spent on clubbing. Marty is more emotionally stable than Mike. He is very calm and tranquil but Mike is very chaotic and likes fighting and destroying property. Marty is more intellectual than Mike because he is always working on developing himself, while Mike is ever looking for trouble.

  • Explanation of the pronounced differences in the personalities of Mike and Marty Scanlon and the role of temperament in their personalities

Temperament plays a very important role in the differences between Marty and Mike’s personality. A person’s temperament corresponds significantly to his stability from infancy well up to the adolescence stage (Ormrod, 2010). There are personality dimensions that have significant genetic components, and environment and heredity interact to determine personality. Since childhood, Mike was emotional and believed that fighting was the solution to his problems. Marty, on the other hand, preferred calmness and tranquility. The twins have grown with these temperaments into their adulthood.

  • The twin who seems more likely to be achieving self-actualization

Marty seems to be achieving self-actualization because he is in a state of self-fulfillment where people achieve their highest potential (Gleason, 1983). Self-actualizing is a stage where a person happy and loving. Marty has satisfied his physiological needs, safety needs, love and belonging needs, and friendship and esteem needs. He is happily married to his longtime girlfriend, with two children and a lucrative job. Marty is able to satisfy his physiological needs, but not safety, love and belonging, friendship and esteem needs. Though he works, his job is not stable, he has broken up with two girlfriends both having his children, he fights a lot and many clubs have barred him. He is likely to be imprisoned because of his love for fighting.

  • Whether Mike and Marty Scanlon appear to have different levels of intelligence

The twins seem to have different levels of intelligence. Intelligence is defined in terms of the ability of a person to utilize the available resources within their environment. Intelligence is conceptualized in different ways as researched by Gardner (Santrock, 1995). Marty has intrapersonal intelligence. He performed well throughout school and college and he still pursues personal development. He also appreciates the value of family and friendship. However, Marty is less sociable than Mike.  Mike has interpersonal intelligence because he is an extrovert, though he has not developed it.


Gleason, P. (1983). Identifying identity: a semantic history. The Journal of American History, 910-931.

Ormrod, J. E. (2010). Heredity and Environment Help Shape Personality. Pearson Allyn Bacon Prentice Hall. Rentfrow, J. (2012). The Big 5 Model of Personality. Psych Central

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