Guest Post by E.J., INTJ
The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis
Dominant Te: Edmund takes a logical approach to life, and he hates it when others try to control him. At the beginning of the series, he uses his combination of NiTe to manipulate other people, including his older siblings. He sometimes misses social cues in his effort to analyze the evidence: for instance, in the Beavers’ house, he asks whether the Witch could turn Aslan to stone, which shocks and offends the others present. In joining the Witch’s side, Edmund is focusing on the empirical evidence available to him. He has seen for himself that the Witch is powerful, and he believes that it is in his best interest to side with her. He begins to change his mind when he observes the Witch in action, turning innocent animals to stone and mistreating Edmund when he objects. After his rescue, Edmund recognises that his initial decision was based on misinformation and could have had disastrous consequences (Ni). In the following battle, he rationally analyzes the Witch’s fighting strategy and breaks her wand, rather than attacking her person. In doing so, he saves Peter’s army.
Auxiliary Ni: Edmund is willing to think outside the box, a trait which interacts unhealthily with his inferior Se attraction to Turkish Delight. As a result, he develops ideas–based on wishful thinking–about the Witch that directly contradict what he is told by Lucy and the Beavers. Edmund is motivated to betray his siblings by picturing his future self reigning over Narnia. On his way to the Witch’s house, he imagines all the changes he could make in Narnia so that it would run more efficiently (Te). After the return to Narnia in “Prince Caspian,” a very changed Edmund is the only person to sense that Lucy had really seen Aslan, while his older Si-using siblings did not. Edmund has the typical Ni tendency to make inside jokes, which are often sarcastic. For instance, he nicknames Trumpkin the Dwarf “D.L.F.”–an abbreviation of “Dear Little Friend”–because Trumpkin had made the mistake of condescendingly addressing the four Pevensies as “my dear little friends.”
Tertiary Se: Edmund does not always pay close attention to his surroundings, and the Witch has to give him directions back to the lamp post, from which he had walked only a few hours before. His Se-dependence keeps him from recognizing the ruins of Cair Paravel, unlike his Si-using siblings, who use their memories to guess their location despite its changed appearance. (Once Edmund realizes the likeliness of their theory, however, he uses NiTe to explain how Cair Paravel could be in ruins when only one year had passed on earth.) Edmund becomes an excellent swordsman, beating the older and more experienced dwarf Trumpkin in a match with broadswords.
Inferior Fi: Edmund’s Fi first appears as self-absorption. He does not base his moral beliefs on those of his three siblings, consistently acting in ways that disturb family harmony. Personal experience (first with the Witch, and then with Aslan) changes his value system. Subsequently, Edmund begins to behave in a self-sacrificial way, although he continues to keep his emotions private. Empathy does not come naturally to him, but he shows sympathy for people (such as Eustace and Rabadash) who have behaved badly, since he remembers his own treasonous behavior. The older Edmund, a “graver and quieter” person than his ESTJ brother, is known for his fairness, earning the nickname “Edmund the Just.” At times he grows impatient with some aspects of Narnian morality–thus his frustration with Peter’s dangerous exhibition of chivalry in the duel with Miraz–but he ultimately supports the Narnian moral code, considering it objectively right.
Writer’s Note (E.J.): Interpretations of Edmund’s MBTI type are all over the map, ranging from xNTJ to ISTP (probably movie-influenced) to ENFP (which makes absolutely no sense). Typing the Pevensies isn’t easy due to the limited character development in some of the Narnia books, but Edmund’s motivations are given more attention than those of his siblings.
Editor’s Note (Arvid Walton): Edmund may be relatively quiet as compared to many ENTJs, but he is neither an INTJ, ISTP or ENFP.
First of all, he does not exhibit dominant Ni, which would not merely envision and go after it as Edmund usually does, but picks out potential problems with different courses the future could take before pursuing that future. Were Edmund an INTJ, it is likely that he would have quickly come to an awareness that the White Witch had no intentions of following through with her promise to make him king. Edmund is much more task oriented than he is intuitive.
As he gets older, his Ni function develops and he becomes more intuitive about things happening behind the lines, but if he were an INTJ, this type of behaviour would have been evident in his younger self as well. The first functions to develop are always the dominant, then the auxiliary, followed by the other two. Edmund starts out with a well developed Te function, and a semi-developed Ni function, which leads me to believe that he’s not an INTJ.
I don’t know who in the nether thought he was an ISTP –although it’s true that the movies portray him as far more impulsive and less calculating than he was in the books. ENFP — let’s just compare him to Lucy and call it good, shall we?