be onset with sudden changes in personality. Keyes explains the absence of
happiness in Charlie’s life by using dark imagery to describe his spiraling
depression, caused by his advanced intellect. Keyes, in Charlie’s voice, writes
“shadows out of the past clutch at my legs and drag me down. I open my mouth to
scream, but I am voiceless” (Keyes 132).
The harrowing description of Charlie’s emotions suggest his developing
depression. Charlie feeling like he is being “dragged down” and “voiceless”
perpetuates the idea of unhappiness; as he is being squandered by his intelligence.
A research study, conducted by Mensa, found that “intelligent people with
“hyper brains” are more reactive to environmental stimulus and that
may predispose them to certain psychological disorders as well as physiological
conditions” (Austin, para. 5). Depression is widely recognized as a
psychological condition. The study supports the reason for Charlie’s depression
as the cause is his amplified intellect. Charlie explains “the feeling of cold
grayness everywhere around him…surrounded by no hope…the feeling of
living death—or worse, of never having been fully alive and knowing” (231).
Phrasing his sentences with words like “cold grayness”, “no hope” and “death”
establish a sense of misery in Charlie that was nonexistent before his surgery.
Charlie using sad words showcases his unhappiness with life; his sentences are
missing words like “excited”, “happy” and “friendship” that he used before his
surgery. The final straw indicating Charlie’s depression arises when he
considers “suicide to stop it all now while he is still in control” (278).
The contemplation of suicide showcases Charlie’s bleak mental state since he is
unable to cope with the surgery that he underwent. Charlie is no longer
grateful for his intelligence but rather miserable because his newfound wisdom
added newfound sadness to his life. Thus, the cause of his depression indicates
that copious amounts of intelligence leads to dolor.