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The Psychology of Cast Away

Sean Cronin, Asa Petersen and Wilson



Maslows Hierarchy
Physiological Needs: Need to Satisfy hunger and thirst.
Relation: When Frank landed on the island, his first need was to
obtain water and food from coconuts that are on the island.

Maslows Hierarchy
Safety Needs: Need to feel that the world is organized and
predictable. Need to feel safe.
Relation: Shortly after arriving on the island Robert finds a cave
that he takes shelter in. this cave provides him with some sort of
order and comfort making him feel safer.

Maslows Hierarchy
Belongingness and Love: Need to love and be loved, to belong and to be accepted.
Relation: Thomas keeps the locket that his lover, Stella, gives him before he gets on
his ill-fated zeppelin ride over the atlantic ocean. The locket has a picture of his love,
which he cherishes even after he returns to the civilized world. Also Hank makes a
face on a volleyball with his blood by accident, which he later names Rawling and
becomes attached to it.

Maslows Hierarchy
Esteem Needs: Need for self esteem confidence and independence. Need for
recognition and respect from others.
Relation: In the beginning of the movie Jericho had very high self esteem due to his
high ranking position with FedEx. After being stranded on the island and failing to
fulfill his basic needs his self esteem drops back down. As his time on the island
progresses Leroy gradually build up his confidence and self esteem bit by bit by
completing tasks like creating fire.

Maslows Hierarchy
Self Actualization: Need to live up to our fullest and unique
Relation: The whole time spent on the island Jeffery is slowly
moving towards achieving his full potential. In order to survive
he had to use his mind and body to its fullest potential.

Unit 8 A
Motivation: A need or desire that energizes and directs behavior
Relation: Jerry keeps a locket of his girlfriend , Delany, with him
at all times and the desire to get back to her motivates him to
stay alive and escape the island.

Unit 8 A
Incentive: A positive or negative stimulus that motivates people.
Relation: The prospect of cooked crab is an Incentive for Hector
to find a way to build a fire.

Unit 8 A
Instinct: A complex behavior that is rigidly patterned throughout
a species and is unlearned.
Relation: When first waking up on the island Tyler's first instinct
is to find food, which he attains through cracking open some
coconuts that drop from the palm trees on the island.

Unit 8 A
Drive-Reduction State: The idea that a physiological need
creates an aroused tension state(a drive) that motivates an
organism to satisfy the need.
Relation: Throughout the beginning of the movie, Darryl
complains of a tooth problem. Eventually, when he is on the
island, his pain is starting to become unbearable, so Dick decides
to remove the tooth with an Ice Skate and a rock.

Unit 7 A
Storage: The retention of encoded information over time.
Relation: Bobby learned to hunt fish with a spear effectively
over a span of four years while he was stuck on the island.

Unit 7 A
Long-Term Memory: The relatively permanent and limitless
storehouse of the memory system. Includes knowledge, skills,
and experiences.
Relation: Daniel never forgot about Coleen, he drew her all over
his cave and kept the locket close to him at all times. His love
for Shirley stayed with him and drove him through the entire

Unit 7 A
Effortful Processing: Encoding that requires attention and
conscious effort.
Relation: L.Ron.Hubbard actively processed the math required to
calculate the search grids in which people would be searching
for him. This took all of his attention to accomplish.

Unit 7 A
Mnemonics: Memory aids, especially those techniques that use
vivid imagery and organized devices.
Relation: Rawlings in itself is a memory aid. Several times
through the movie Rawlings directs Larry to pieces of
information that he knew, but just needed a reminder of. The
cave painting of Charlene also help Manuel remember her.

Unit 7 A
Insight: A sudden and often novel realization of the solution to a
problem; it contrasts with strategy based solutions
Relation: After staring at the half of a portable toilet, Enrico
realizes that he can use it as a sail on a raft to escape the
islands tide.

Unit 12
PTSD: An anxiety disorder characterized by haunting memories
nightmares social withdrawal jumpy anxiety and insomnia.
Relation: After returning from the island Juan has trouble
sleeping at night and when he does sleep its on the floor instead
of a bed. Also at a gathering to welcome home back he seems
disconnected and out of it

Unit 12
PTG: Positive Psychological changes as a result of struggling with
extremely challenging circumstances and crises.
Relation: After coming home and finding that Todd's wife has
married another man in his absence he decides to meet with her.
After they meet and make out and stuff Todd realizes that he has
to let her go. After he does this he feels at rest.

Unit 12
Major Depressive Disorder: A mood disorder in which a person
experiences, in the absence of drugs or medical condition, two
or more weeks of significantly depressed moods feelings of
worthlessness and diminished interest in pleasure of most
Relation: After Spending X amount of time SEAN STOP on the
island Bubba decides that life is hopeless and he will never
survive on the island so he climbs to the top of a cliff to hang

Unit 12
Anxiety Disorder: Psychological disorders characterized by
distressing, persistent anxiety and maladaptive behaviors that
reduce anxiety.
Relation: Scooby Doo develops anxiety while being on the island.
He becomes irritable quickly, often throwing objects and
screaming on the top of his lungs.