Academic Psychiatry

, Volume 39, Issue 6, pp 719–725 | Cite as

Teaching Psychopathology in a Galaxy Far, Far Away: The Light Side of the Force

  • Susan Hatters FriedmanEmail author
  • Ryan C. W. Hall
Column: Media


Star Wars films are among the top box office hits of all time. The films have been popular internationally for almost 40 years. As such, both trainees and attending psychiatrists are likely to be aware of them. This article highlights a vast array of psychopathology in Star Wars films which can be useful in teaching, even when the characters are considered the “good guys”. Included are as follows: histrionic, obsessive-compulsive, and dependent personality traits, perinatal psychiatric disorders, prodromal schizophrenia, pseudo-dementia, frontal lobe lesions, pathological gambling, and even malingering. As such, Star Wars has tremendous potential to teach psychiatric trainees about mental health issues.


Media (TV films) Teaching methods 



The authors appreciate the contributions of Troy Friedman, Tom Bishop, Assad Khaishgi, and Chris Kenedi.


On behalf of both authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Academic Psychiatry 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand
  2. 2.University of Central FloridaOrlandoUSA

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