Why Gregory House is an INTJ
I have seen House typed as an ENTP, INTP, ISTP, ESTP, ISTJ, and an ENTJ.
None of these are correct. I understand the arguments behind them, but these arguments are incorrect.
The most valid argument is for House being an ISTP: He is definitely an Se user, and he appears to have inferior Fe, and dominant Ti. This argument is partially correct; he is an Se user, and he seems Ti dominant. However, he seems Ti dominant due to his enneagram type; House is a 5, and the 5-ish desire for knowledge and understanding makes him seem as though he desires knowledge for the sake of knowledge. This is false. He desires knowledge for practical use; he learns a language so that he can speak it if he needs to, he reads up on medicine so that he can better practice medicine, he learns about people so that he can manipulate them and understand their motives. Although he is more intellectual than many Te users, all of the knowledge he gathers ultimately serves a purpose. This can be mistaken for Ti dominance.
Another problem with the ISTP argument is that House is detached from the problem; he doesn’t want to interact with his patients, he doesn’t want to observe them. He looks over the file, orders his team to run some tests, and diagnoses based on the information. An ISTP would not voluntarily function like this; they would want to examine the patient, talk to them, inspect the patient’s home and workplace, all with their own hands. ISTPs need to interact with the information in order to feel comfortable making deductions, and they are rarely comfortable making assumptions. INTJs need to know the information in order to feel comfortable making deductions, and they are perfectly comfortable making assumptions. House’s Se is well developed, but he doesn’t want to use it to problem-solve. He wants to rely on his intuition.
His Ni manifests in a way that can be mistaken for Ti; he steps back to analyze the problem, then gets a solution. But this is actually an Ni process; when he steps back, he begins to analyze the information internally; he allows it to settle, to process. Then, his intuition returns the information in a more processed form. This is textbook Ni.
Further evidence for Ni is how his insights are often triggered by other information; Ni works through meta data, or information about information. When House is talking to Wilson, and Wilson says something that triggers House to have an insight about his patient, that is Ni. Ni connects the dots, makes connections. This is different from the Ne way of forming connections; Ne creates connections, Ni sees connections.
Ne can start at a point and continue on from there: “I am holding a banana. How many letters in banana? 6. What is the sixth letter of the sentence ‘I am holding a banana?’ ‘l.’ How do we pronounce ‘l?’ ‘El.’ ‘What begins with ‘El?’ ‘Electric.’ What is electric? iPads in the shape of triangles. That’s right, triangles. Illuminati confirmed.”
Ni starts at a point and finds another point, and draws a line between them: “I am holding a banana. It’s Tuesday. Last time I was craving a banana was last Tuesday. There’s got to be something to explain that.”
House is Ni. He finds a point, and then another point, and he finds the connection between them. He notices patterns and connections that others do not, because others don’t draw these kinds of connections.
Another things that House displays is Fi. The best example is in season 2 when Cameron visits House’s apartment (no pun intended). Cameron says something along the lines of “I thought you saved people lives because you wanted to help them. Now I see that you do it because it’s right.” House’s principles are just that; principles. They are applied constantly, even when a more personalized approach would have been better. They involve absolutes; there is either a right or wrong way to do something. Fe is more accepting of multiple viewpoints; some people think this way, others think that way. Fi and Ti share a trait of wanting consistency; the difference is that Ti wants logical consistency, while Fi wants ethical consistency. If someone says lying is wrong, and then lies, an Fi user will be enraged, regardless of whether or not the person had a good reason; the person has contradicted their own ethical statement. If lying is wrong, that means all lying is wrong, in all circumstances and at all times. Because of this, Fi users tend to define their ethics carefully; for instance, Nietzsche believed that humans could be treated differently depending on whether they belonged to the class that was fit to serve or the class that was fit to rule. This is Fi; it has to be specific, because ethics have to be universal. Fe is more flexible; it can incorporate external data at any given point in time. If a person lies, they may excuse it if the person had a good motive; because in the mind of an Fe user, ethical consistency is unimportant. It is the emotions of others that matter when evaluating the goodness or badness of an action. House is clearly Fi from this standpoint. Further evidence includes his unwillingness to share his emotions and his need to process emotions on his own before sharing them.
Finally, we arrive at the final piece of the puzzle. House’s inferior Se. The best example of his Se is when he and Cuddy (spoiler alert) break up. He immediately clears out his bank account, checks into a hotel, has prostitutes brought up to his room, and starts taking Vicodin again after being clean for a year. Se avoids a lack of sensory stimulation, as sensory stimulation is what is uses to draw conclusions; as such, when in the grip of their Se, INJs will avoid a lack of sensory stimulation. The only way to ignore a lack of sensory stimulation is to stimulate the senses, and this leads to consuming alcohol or drugs in excess, doing what is fun, trying out new physical activities, and so on. His inferior Se is also shown by his philosophy that seeing the patient will compromise his ability to make a rational decision. This is partially Te, but also a rejection of physical evidence (Se).
As such, we can conclude that Gregory House is an Ni dominant, and uses tertiary Fi. It is fairly easy to prove Te as well (everything needs to be rational, how he is pragmatic before considering ethics or feelings of others), but in proving Ni, Fi and Se, Te can be assumed. House is not an ENTP, INTP, ISTP, ESTP, ENTJ, or (god forbid) an ISTJ.