Adrift: Seventy-Six Days Lost at Sea Characters

Steven Callahan
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Steve Callahan, Rational Self

Callahan characterizes his psyche as existing in three parts: the rational, the emotional, and the physical. He refers to these parts as his "crew." Early in the tale, before the loss of Napoleon Solo, the triumvirate obeys the rational self, the so-called "captain." As matters worsen, the rational Callahan must aggressively manage the crew, enforcing the discipline necessary to ensure survival. As time passes, the risk of "mutiny" increases.

Each facet of Callahan serves its own purpose. The rational self is responsible for planning and problem solving. It measures the speed and direction of travel. It manages the logistics of food and water. The rational self also manages the resources of the "crew." Willpower alone, however, is limited in application. The physical self can't work beyond exhaustion and rational thought proves impossible in the face of abject despair. This demonstrates how tragedy compromises personhood...

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This section contains 755 words
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