For those of you who are not familiar with the Enneagram, it’s a personality profiling system that dates back to the early Christian mystics, Sufis, and probably long before that. It was brought to modern awareness by Oscar Ichazo and further developed by Don Richard Riso and Russ Hudson, who are well known for their writings on it today.
The Enneagram consists of nine personality types. Each type is defined by its core desire and core fear. Just for fun, here are the probable Enneagram types of one hundred famous authors.
Type 1 – The Reformer
Ones are driven by their desire to be good and their fear of being corrupt or evil. They tend to have strong ethics, high standards, and, if healthy, a propensity for fighting for justice.
Probable ones include Confucius, Plato, Sir Thomas More, C.S. Lewis, Mahatma Gandhi, Pope John Paul II, Nelson Mandela, Hilary Clinton, George Bernard Shaw, George Orwell, Henry David Thoreau, Al Gore, Rudy Giuliani, Sandra Day O’Connor, Thomas Keller, Ralph Nader, Noam Chomsky, Bill Moyers, George Will, William F. Buckley Jr., Bill Maher, Tina Fey, Susan Brownmiller, Jessica Mitford, and Julie Andrews.
Type 2 – The Helper
Twos are driven by their desire to be loved and their fear of rejection and being unworthy of love. At their best, they are usually warm, empathetic, and interested in pleasing and caring for other people.
Probable twos include Byron Katie, Leo F. Buscaglia, Pope John XXIII, Desmond Tutu, Mother Theresa, Barbara De Angelis, Eleanor Roosevelt, Betty Friedan, and Nancy Reagan.
Type 3 – The Achiever
Threes are driven by their desire to feel as though they have something valuable to offer the world and their fear of being worthless. They are generally ambitious, hardworking, and image-conscious.
Probable three authors include Truman Capote, Tony Robbins, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Oprah Winfrey, and John Edward.
Type 4 – The Individualist
Fours are driven by their desire to create a strong identity and their fear of having no identity of their own. They are usually creative, emotional types, mercurial, and reserved.
Probable four authors include Edgar Allan Poe, Rumi, Virginia Woolf, Anne Rice, Yukio Mishima, Anne Frank, Isak Dinesen, William Faulkner, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Tennessee Williams, Mary McCarthy, Robert James Waller, Anaîs Nin, and J.D. Salinger.
Type 5 – The Investigator
Fives are driven by their desire to understand the world and prove themselves competent, and their fear of being helpless and incapable. They are usually independent, cerebral, and somewhat detached.
Probable fives include Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein, Emily Dickinson, Friedrich Nietzsche, Agatha Christie, James Joyce, Stephen King, Oliver Sacks, Susan Sontag, Jean-Paul Sartre, Ursula K. Le Guin, Cormac McCarthy, Vladamir Nabokov, Loren Eiseley, Graham Greene, Patrick O’Brien, Peter Matthiessen, Ian McEwan, Lewis Carroll, Karl Marx, Paul Bowles, and Clive Barker.
Type 6 – The Loyalist
Sixes are driven by their desire for security and their fear of not having enough support and guidance. They are usually responsible and loyal. Sixes can be divided into two categories: Phobic sixes usually obey authority as a matter of course, whereas Counterphobic sixes have a tendency to rebel against authority as a way of dealing with their anxiety.
Probable sixes include Mark Twain, Sigmund Freud, William James, J.R.R. Tolkien, Jiddu Krishnamurti, and John Grisham.
Type 7 – The Enthusiast
Sevens are driven by their desire for the easy life–to have all their needs fulfilled–and by their fear of pain and suffering. Sevens are usually gregarious, spontaneous, and constantly on the go.
Probable sevens include Benjamin Franklin, Robert Fulghum, Gerald G. Jampolsky, Henry Miller, Joseph Chilton Pearce, Bernie S. Siegel, Tom Wolfe, Richard P. Feynman, Oscar Wilde, and Sarah Palin.
Type 8 – The Challenger
Eights are driven by their desire to control their own destiny and their fear of being under someone else’s thumb. They are generally assertive and have a tendency to dominate their environment.
Probable eights include Dr. Phil, Barbara Walters, Harlan Ellison, Toni Morrison and Ernest Hemingway.
Type 9 – The Peacemaker
Nines are, true to their name, driven by their desire for inner peace and harmony and their fear of loss and separation from those they love. They tend to be easygoing, accommodating, and mellow.
Probable nines include J.K. Rowling, Jane Austen, Carl Jung and Carl Rogers.
Love this? Find our enneagram picks for 99 fictional characters!