Star Wars Psychology: Dark Side of the Mind Review

IMG_9882 2

Since I’ve wrapped my undergrad, I’ve been itching to get back into the reading game—and I have a bookshelf full of (mostly) Star Wars books to prove it.

I got Star Wars Psychology with a gift certificate from Singing Pebble Books I won in an auction. At first, I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to spend the gift certificate on because the bookstore seemed to be more focused on spirituality, health, and healing—but when I saw this book, it was like a match made in heaven.

First things first: if you’re looking for a book to escape from the world, don’t pick this up. Part of the reason why this took me so long to finish was because I needed to stop and reflect on what I’d read—it’s a psychology book, after all.

That being said, I absolutely loved it. Star Wars Psychology is filled with thought-provoking essays all analyzing the Star Wars universe through a psychological lens. Some standouts for me were “A Distressing Damsel: Leia’s Heroic Journey” by Mara Wood, “Lando’s Choice: Anatomy of a Moral Dilemma” by Jay Scarlet, “Shooting, Striking, Returning: The Universes in Our Heads” by Donald F. Glut and Travis Langley, “A Symphony of Psychology: The Music of Star Wars” by Jim Davies and Joe Kraemer, and “Droids, Minds, and Why We Care” by Jim Davies.

When I read these essays, I felt myself challenging my previously held beliefs about characters and situations—particularly with Jim Davies’s droid essay. Reading books like this one about something you hold so dear helps you think more critically about the thing you adore and in turn, gives you a greater appreciation for the storytelling behind each facet of the whole.

This book also helped me reflect on why I’m so invested in this universe and why so many people connect to this space opera. The science behind each mental and emotional element is absolutely fascinating and makes me think more critically about the choices we make outside the ones the Star Wars characters make.

It’s a belief-challenging wild ride from beginning to end that I cannot recommend enough, especially for Star Wars fans.

Plus, it was nice reading Star Wars essays written by Jim Davies—my former prof!