Category: Sociology

René Magritte’s Guide to Personality, Literacy, and the Uncanny Valley

Attending the René Magritte exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art last month, several pieces struck me as strong illustrations of principles that became widely recognized long after he produced his works.

Portrait of Paul Nougé (1927) by René Magritte with commentary by exhibit curator, Anne Umland

Trait Theory vs. Social Psychology

When Magritte painted Paul Nougé, he doubled the image, reproducing his own image of his friend while subtly changing it. In doing so, he broke from the tradition that portraiture should “represent a singular self.” Rather, Magritte is saying, all representations are just that, a record of one view of a person, one facet of their personality.

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