30 Dec 2022


The Penfield Mood Organ in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

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Academic level: College

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Sentimentality is not a unique emotion; it is any emotion that is triggered rather than being earned. Unearned sweetness can be as sentimental as darkness. Dick earns the darkness by failing to wallow in it. Constantly, he fights it with Quixotic hope and humor: Deckard in the pentshop in a wading world and dreaming of a real sheep. 

In the first passages, Deckard and Iran, his wife are arguing about Penfield Mood Organ, every morning. Penfield Mood Organ is an instrument that alters people mood upon punching. Deckard sets the machine to give him a cheerful mood and encourages his wife to follow the suit. The wife objects that emotions should be earned. She points out that Deckard’s machine has a “six-hour self-accusatory depression.” She further explains that people should earn emotions congruent with the emotions they are in. She sets the machine to send her into despair twice in every month. “I program an automatic resetting for three hours later…A 481. Awareness of the manifold possibilities open to me in the future: new hope that—” she says. “I know 481,” the husband interrupts. Based on the discussion, the couple demonstrates conflicting views in underscoring emotions. 

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The couple discusses 888 that revolves around the desire to watch Television Vision, irrespective of what is being aired and which stimulates the cerebral cortex into wanting to dial. Despite its success in the literature industry, Dick’s concepts through Deckard, and the wife, seems not to work. The Mood Organ is never mentioned in the story; it perfectly explored human emotion through the struggle between the characters. The instrument is a symbol of emotional struggles that people undergo in their daily lives and their pursuit for it. 

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 17). The Penfield Mood Organ in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?.


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