Essay about Good Will Hunting Character Analysis

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Introduction Social- Cognitive theory believes that humans are individuals who are capable of proactively making things happen to assist in their own development (Parajes, 2002). In Good Will Hunting, Will Hunting did not believe that he was able to make a positive change in his life. Will is a prodigy, particularly in mathematics, who did not recognize his gift. He was born and raised in the slums, where he is now comfortable. He was abandoned by his parents and in and out of numerous foster homes. He experienced abuse and neglect in these homes. He was not only physically abused but also mentally and psychologically. His ability to solve complicated mathematical equations caught the eye of a professor at the university where Will…show more content…
Will sees himself as a “southie”, a loser. To maintain congruence between his self-view and his experiences his acts out. He starts fights and stays in trouble. He doesn't seek anything better for himself. In Rogers' theory an individual strives for self-actualization. Will is brilliant and has knowledge about many topics. He reads a lot to keep himself knowledgeable. He answers difficult math problems that are put on a board at MIT, where he works as a janitor. In trying to maintain congruence between his self-view and his experiences he does not trust anyone. When someone tries to get close and help him he denies needing help. Will is defensive towards everyone he comes in contact with. He experiences incongruence with his cockiness of being smarter than most but he doesn't feel he deserves better than living as a nobody. Will's ability to push all his therapists and his girlfriend away shows his defensiveness. He keeps this tough boy attitude to make others not want to care about him because no one ever has. Rogers' pathology includes defensive maintenance of self (Pervin et al., 2005). Will's therapist was concerned about Will and took an “active role in understanding the experiences of the client” (Pervin et al, p. 198, 2005). This therapy is called Client-Centered Therapy. The therapist doesn't try to change Will but accepts him as he is. Will eventually changes by embracing his new found relationship with his girlfriend and realizes his potential.
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