I think the reason the Durarara characters are harder to type than characters of other stories is because they are involved in a twisted story. And so their characters and personalities are all twisted. If that were so it would not be enough to look at cognitive functions. Cognitive functions are about cognition. It’s about how a person processes information. What may be one function to you may be another function to them.
What was I thinking about….yeah, behavior. It’s not enough to look at human behavior and interpet that they’re thinking this way. Durarara characters show. They don’t tell. They show and in order to accurately assess what function they are using you have to understand their personalities and motivation first. You have to understand their perception of the world. Their perception not the perception of other characters or your own. Because Durarara is a story of how different people with twisted personalities in a story of twisted love interact and connect in order to pursue their morally grey motivations.
Is Mika using Fe, “As long as Seiji is happy I’m happy’ or Fi "As long as I’m happy with Seiji nothing else matters’? Is she an ENFP or ENFJ? Or if she’s using both which is the source of her motivation? Herself or Seiji? We think it’s Seiji. It seems from what they show its Seiji. But the novels have said that she loves Seiji because she loves herself so she loves Seiji whom she loves.
she loved most was herself, who loved someone else.
she never thought about what was best for the other person.
love, it was only natural to sneak into her beloved’s house and leave small
recorders around his room. After all, she loved him so very
Seiji had decided he loved another, she would never resent him for it. She
would continue to love him, because it was her love for herself that was most
important—far, far, far more important than the feelings of the one she loved,
That is Mika’s perception of the world. Her world. Without understanding this I would be inclined to think she uses Fe in her love for Seiji instead of Fi.
So far (though I have only thought of him, Izaya, Mikado, Vorona, Namie and Shinra) Shizuo seems to be the character who openly displays his cognitive functions quite obviously in the story. But you don’t only need knowledge of cognitive functions to type him. You need knowledge of his character. For example people have typed Shizuo as ISTJ and ISTP (including me in the past) because he seems to want to stick to tradition and he follows rules like keeping quiet in the library and being respectful to seniors, which is an ISTJ thing. They type him according to what he seems to be.
Shizuo uses Ti. It may not be obvious even if you know about Ti. Ti is about internal logic and wanting to break things down to see how the parts form the whole. People who lead with Ti are systematic, objective, and logical. That doesn’t seem in line with Shizuo who always gets angry and emotional about things.
Only it does. Shizuo displays his functions most obviously when Izaya gets him involved. He clearly has intuition from that. What is the defining character motivation of Shizuo? It is to lead a peaceful life. This may seem idealistic but it actually comes from his logic. He wants to live a peaceful life because he hates violence and he hates Izaya because Izaya makes him use the violence he hates. There’s two internal logical ideas from Ti here.
- He hates violence because violence makes him a monster. If he lives a peaceful life he won’t become violent and so he won’t become a monster.
- He hates Izaya because Izaya makes him use the violence he hates. That may possibly mean Izaya hates him because he hates himself because he uses the violence he hates. And if Izaya is making him use something that makes him hate himself even more, Izaya must hate him.
Now in this, Shizuo ignored external logic. Izaya didn’t declare hatred for Shizuo at first. In fact he was rather impressed clapping for him and introducing himself. Logically there could have been a small possibility of getting along especially as Shinra introduced Shizuo to him. It could be because of Shinra that Izaya wanted to see his strength since Shizuo knows Shinra is always gushing about his strength. But Shizuo said at first sight he didn’t like him. His intuition probably alerted him of that. And his introverted thinking of violence making him a monster and making him hate himself processed it.
That’s how Ti works for Shizuo in not so obvious ways and it may be hard to see if you don’t have an understanding of Shizuo’s character.
Or actually, if you don’t have an understanding of Shizuo’s perception as a character. Especially since Ti is a subjective judging function. But there still needs to be understanding of a certain extent of Shizuo’s character to identify Ti in him. For example the most obvious example that Shizuo leads with Ti is his own logic. Everything is Izaya’s fault, if anyone mentions Izaya they must be trying to piss him off, if you throw the first blow you could have killed him you must have been trying to kill him and so you can’t complain if he kills you.
The good thing is Shizuo is very honest and says exactly what he means "I’m not satisfied. I’m going to Shinjuku to kill Izaya.” “You hit me a blow to the head could kill someone you were trying to kill me so whatever I do to you you’ll have no problem right?” “…I don’t think so. Because I hate violence.” (In response to if he’s been in any fights) But the thing is often it’s not very obvious what he means! If you have no context or understanding of his character you’d assume he really hasn’t been in any fights like the reporter did. But if you do you’ll know that he has been in fights but he doesn’t acknowledge them as fights because he hates violence and to him and his logic they weren’t fights just exhibition of violence.
And it’s because of this that Izaya doesn’t understand him. Because Izaya doesn’t and doesn’t care to understand Shizuo’s logic. He either has his own logic or considers logic as facts. I’m leaning towards the latter. Izaya and Shizuo conflict because their logic clash.
Mikado is another tricky one (hey he is the best kind of trickster lol) he definitely has Fi. He quite obviously leads with Fi. But does he use Se or Si? Ne or Ni? When it gets confusing like this it’s helpful to go back to the foundation of his character. Mikado is an idealist. He’s driven by his ideals. He also wants to go back to the past. He is navigating the physical environment and changing it (Se) in order to bring things back to the way they were (Si) for his own ideal (Fi). His source is Fi and Si and his intuition helps him along.
I claim no mbti or cognitive functions expertise, I’m just starting to learn and understand along the way. But I’m confident in my understanding of the characters. I think the reason why there are conflicting interpretations is either lack of mbti knowledge or lack of character understanding. It is not that you don’t understand cognitive functions. I’m sure there are a lot of people who understand cognitive functions much better than me, enough to confidently type characters. It is that you don’t understand the characters and the way they process information. You need both for typing and an integrated understanding of the character, the person.
Cognitive functions are not a filter. They are a lens. They are not a filter in which you use to remove what is unwanted in perception of the character. They are a lens through which you see the character and grow to understand them better.
If there were two important things to remember in typing a character it would be source and perception. Source of the behavior and individual perception.
My notes from my presentation at the Trans Experience in Philosophy Conference
● To rethink transgender politics by placing it within the context of colonization. ‘Queer’
decolonization studies focuses on the colonial erasure of precolonial gendering and
sexuality, with some arguing a nonexistent precolonial gendering and sexuality within some contexts of colonization. In taking these critiques seriously we must ask the
question of what transgender and feminist politics within colonized spaces means with
an understanding of these politics as developing from a eurocentric framework.
● To do this we must place Judith Butler and Monique Wittig in conversation with the
tradition of Black and Indigenous Feminisms to better understand the role race plays in
the construction of gender. A common Black Feminist critique of the Radical Feminist movement in addition to other Feminisms, is the unspoken assumption of the white
sexually dimorphic body as universal female experience. Wittig spoke of the biological
model for sex as part of the legacy of patriarchy naturalizing the social divisions between
men and women when used by both gender science and feminism. The Combahee
River Collective made a similar claim against radical feminism, coming from a racial lens,
to describe biological essentialism as racialized and why they rejected it from the
perspective of often not being considered to be ‘real women.’ We know from Judith
Butler that there is no prediscursive body, that to describe a body before discourse is to
discursively construct it, and because of this biological sex is always already gender; the
move towards essentializing sex is to discursively construct a category as preexisting
discourse. Gender is always already heterosexual, the symbolic categories of ‘man’ and
‘woman’ existing to naturalize divisions that exist to propagate itself through reproductive
futurism that produces the gendered subject. But these gendered subjects, the
assumption of universal whiteness by excluding the narrative of race from its conception, was always already racialized. Gender is a white nationalist politics that associates the
purity of the nation with the reproduction of the white race and its subjects. This is a
departure from the framework that there is a universal female experience based in the
naturalism of sex. Instead, Maria Lugones’s framework of the Coloniality of Gender, or gender as part of the European colonization of the Americas and Africa is where we’ll
base an analysis of gender from. The Coloniality of Gender describes the arising
Enlightenment project of scientific naturalism replacing the theological basis for race. In
this process, scientific naturalism seeks to explain previous theological justifications for
race within biological terms naturalizing social divisions within the prediscursive. Maria
Lugones argues that gender is part of this process within Enlightenment thought.The
biologizing of gender cannot be separated from the biologizing of race. The Coloniality of
Gender describes the supposed universal dimorphic sexed body as white. By placing attention to the context where Black and Indigenous Feminists were describing their
gendered experiences as raracialized - that their womanhood is not a universal
assumption but a contested space we can rethink gender politics as a racial politics.
Coexisting with the assumption of the white sexed body as the universal female
experience is the assumption of Blackness and Indigeneity as outside the symbolic
integrity of gendered categories. The Coloniality of Gender is seen in the colonial
encounter - the meeting space of the colonizer’s eurocentrism with the colonized subject. Maria Lugones describes this colonial encounter as not carrying forward the notion of a universal sexually dimorphic body. The colonial encounter instead produces racial
subjects within what Lugones terms the ‘light’ and ‘dark’ side of gender. The dark side of
gender is seen in the colonial literature describing Black and Indigenous persons as
nonnormatively sexed, as intersexed, disfigured, mutilated, excessive, as not dimorphic
but rather masculine and feminine in ways unintelligible in the face of the model of
sexual dimorphism as white. Hortense Spillers further problematizes the notion of a
universal white sexed body by arguing that the violence of the Middle Passage and
enslavement is an ungendering violence, and making visible that violence into the flesh. Her distinction between body and flesh is essential to an understanding of gender as
racialized. Black Flesh being ungendered further proves the white sexed body is not
universal. Black persons existing outside of the Enlightenment Humanist discourses
shows us that the body belongs to the human while Black Flesh also belongs to the
nonhuman. The flesh can never be part of the light side of gender, as dimorphic or
heterosexual.This historical narrative of gender as racialized confirms much of what
Black and Indigenous Feminism have already described starting with “Ain’t I A Woman?”
Gender politics being based within accepting the narrative of the Coloniality of Gender
answers this question for us: No. Sex is the naturalization of white supremacist racial
politics, not existing within the body before discourse, and sex relying on the separation between the liberated subject position of the body versus the ungendering of the
● The implications this has for a transgender and feminist politics is immense. Returning to
Butler, we know that in Gender Trouble she described that feminism produces the very
subject it claims to be representing - the female subject. If we recognize the female, sex
as always already gender then it becomes necessary as part of a decolonization effort to reject the female as the basis of feminism. If biological sex and thus the female arises
from a context of colonization and slavery, then we can come to the conclusion that
gender essentialism that places transgender people as outside can only exist because of colonization. Transmisogyny and the antiblack violence against Black Trans Women and
colonial violence against transgender indigenous women is a direct consequence of the
biologizing of sex and race. The essentialist politics of Radical Feminism, based within the female subject as a revolutionary subject, is therefore a racial nationalism. Cissexism and transmisogyny are therefore racialized in its formation. There cannot be a female subject without the white sexed body. The main purpose of feminism as the liberation of
women, which has often been exclusionary in both racial and trans contexts, cannot be a truly liberatory gender politics.
Problem is, your daddy’s a big fella. Imagine a couple punches just
gonna make him mad. He’s gonna fight back. Then his buddies are gonna
want to help out. I’ll need to defend myself. Things will escalate.
That’s what these things do. They escalate. And violence makes violence. It makes nothing much at all.