Charles Foster Kane’s Childhood Trauma Character Analysis

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When I was a Junior in high school, and going through some hard times, my grandma was the single most influential person in keeping me in the right path and teaching me to be strong in the process. To this day, I live by her example, and she’s a great one to do so by. I love others, help anywhere I can, and continue to be strong while striving towards my goals, to make her and myself proud. To reinforce by belief; we’re all shaped by the people and memories that formed as early as our minds could start storing them.

I was blessed with happy memories, and can acknowledge that every day. Some people however, may have gotten their start with memories that are traumatic to one’s growing and beliefs. Even if they are able to live past the experience, and grow from it, there’s no doubt that their genesis made some sort of influence on their development. In Arson Well’s fictional film, Citizen Kane, the main character, Charles Foster Kane, starts off in a humble home with his mother and father.

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In result of coming into a small fortune, his parents make the decision to send Charles off to live with a wealthy Wall-Street tycoon named Walter Parks Theatre whom he did not take well to, resulting in a life-altering influence on the young Charlie’s psychological ell-being and yearning for the simplicity in parental love. There was a subtle line spoken by Charlie’s mother in a flashback of the moment he was signed over to Mr.. Thatcher. Upon the news that he was going away, Kane, a young boy of about 6 at the time, pushed his sled into Thatcher resulting in him falling onto the ground.

Cane’s father, who was previously fighting the mother’s decision to have Charles taken away until being told of the compensation they would receive for him, comes at Charles and threatens to hit him. He exclaims to Thatcher that Charles needs “a good thrashing! ” Quick to respond, Mrs.. Kane takes Charles in her arms and responds, “that’s why he’s going to be brought up where [Kane Sir. ] can’t get at him. ” This sets up a past beyond what we begin to learn about Charles Foster Kane. It implies an abusive relationship between Charles and his father, making his mother’s affection what he clung to.

In analyzing Charlie’s initial reaction to Thatcher and the implication of fatherly hatred, Morris Bell writes in his article Where You Can’t Get At Him: Arson Wells and the Attempt to Escape From Father “… The attempt to escape from, or evade, or deny, or retreat from the father is unconnected inevitably with attempt, conscious or not, to usurp the father’s role. ” (Page 285. ) Bell is referring to Cane’s future of pursuing a life that spites Thatcher’s efforts to be a father to him due to the preconceived distaste towards fatherly figures and the blaming of Thatcher for being taken away from his mother’s love.

This shows the psychological impact he quickly-introduced background of Kane had on his full future, pursuits, and failures. That instance kick-starts a series of relationship strains between Kane and others in his life. He is unable to form a lasting intimacy with anyone, resulting in his 2 ailed marriages. His second wife, Susan Alexander, whom is the reason his first marriage failed, is one of the few that Kane ever emotionally invested himself in to any sort of depth.

Although, even the depth of that intimacy was shallow in comparison to the average amount of love one person gives to someone else; and his didn’t last long with her. Randy Rasmussen Arson Wells: Six Films Analyzed, Scene by Scene touches on a conversation between Susan and Kane in a scene that exemplifies his longing for a mother’s affection get in the way of a growing relationship. Susan and Kane are getting to know each other in this scene and he briefly touched on his past but stops himself before reviling too much; that is that he’s emotionally torn from his lack of parents leadership in his life. Ironic in a bitter sort of way, Susan will soon experience the darker side of parental attention that Kane never got to experience, unless we count the parental abuse hinted at by Mary Kane [Mrs.. Kane]” (Page 34. ) This foreshadows Susan Alexander and Charlie’s future relationship together, and the deterioration that is bound to happen by Kane letting it be so, due to his insecurities. Charles is incapable of revealing too much of his emotions, or even touch on them himself. Kane, although given the best money could buy, seems to be in pursuit of happiness his entire life.

He tries to find it in a multiple of materialistic things, because he is not capable of obtaining it on a personal emotional level. The most obvious example of his pursuit to happiness through materialistic things is Charlie’s estate, Canada. Canada, where Kane resided in his retirement, was named after the ancient city known for its lavish riches. The movie described it as having enough articles for several museums and so many lavish trials that the estate could never be properly appraised.

Willpower in his book Modernism, Media, and Propaganda: British Narrative from 1900 to 1945 referenced the reason behind Cane’s collections. “Kane was ‘disappointed in this world, so he built one of his own, an absolute monarchy. ” (page 244) In his estate that he controlled, he was able to simulate happiness. He threw parties often in Canada’s earlier years, and his guest’s wonderment and happiness would validate a simulation of his own. As an old man, he kept Susan with him in his large estate, not giving her access to the outside world but only what was in his World of Canada.

Susan, actually capable of feeling emotions and happiness, knew this wasn’t enough for her. She hated being locked away, and this eventually resulted in her leaving him. All of these tragic events lead to Charlie’s death, in which he mutters the last word “Rosebud. ” What is Rosebud? That’s what the film is ultimately based around. In the last scene, we see Cane’s worthless materials of Canada being thrown in an incinerator; one of these items being a sled, like Charles had as a boy, with the word “Rosebud” painted across it.

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Charles Foster Kane’s Childhood Trauma Character Analysis. (2018, Jan 11). Retrieved from

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