Introducing a new collection at Od's Togs: Canadian-themed t-shirts. Wildly popular in the Philippines!
Go have a look!
|Pikangikum - Google maps.|
What do you do?
I’m a teacher.
What do you teach?
What do you teach them?
You mean grammar, verbs, nouns, pronunciation, conjugation, articles and particles, negatives and interrogatives …?
What do you mean, ‘that too’?
Well, I also try to teach them how to think, and feel – show them inspiration, aspiration, cooperation, participation, consolation, innovation, … help them think about globalization, exploitation, confrontation, incarceration, discrimination, degradation, subjugation, …how inequality brings poverty, how intolerance brings violence, how need is denied by greed, how –isms become prisons, how thinking and feeling can bring about healing.
Well I don’t know about that. Maybe you should stick to language, forget about anguish. You can’t change the world.
But if I did that, I’d be a cheater, not a teacher.
“I do not mean to speak, primarily, of cases of obvious desertion by, or separation from, the parents, though this, of course, can have traumatic results. Nor am I thinking of children who were obviously uncared for or totally neglected, and who were always aware of this or at least grew up with the knowledge that it was so. Apart from these extreme cases, there are large numbers of people who suffer from narcissistic disorders, who often had sensitive and caring parents from whom they received much encouragement; yet, these people are suffering from severe depressions. They enter analysis in the belief, with which they grew up, that their childhood was happy and protected (The Drama of the Gifted Child, p. 5).
|The tragic fate of a princess.|
“This ability to mourn, to give up the illusion of his ‘happy’ childhood, can restore the depressive's vitality and creativity, and (if he comes to analysis at all) free the grandiose person from the exertions of and dependence on his Sisyphean task. If a person is able, during this long process, to experience that he was never ‘loved’ as a child for what he was but for his achievements, success, and good qualities, and that he sacrificed his childhood for this ‘love,’ …” (Miller, op. cit., p. 57).
“I wouldn't have minded if the baby had died. And everybody expected me to be happy. In despair I telephoned a friend who said that I’d get fond of him in time through being busy with him and having him around all the time. But that did not happen either. I only began to be fond of him when I could go back to work and only saw him when I came home, as a distraction and toy, so to speak. But quite honestly, a little dog would have done just as well. Now that he is gradually getting bigger and I see that I can train him and that he is devoted to me and trusts me, I am beginning to develop tender feelings for him and am glad that he is there (Miller, op. cit., p. 48).”
• The child was allowed to experience and express ‘ordinary’ impulses (such as jealousy, rage, defiance) because his parents did not require him ... to represent their own ethical attitudes …” (The Drama of the Gifted Child, p. 33).
|Narcissus lost in admiration.|
“The ambiguity that characterizes the word narcissism, even in professional literature, is further complicated by the derogatory emotional overtone it receives in everyday use. For there such meanings as 'in love with oneself,' 'always thinking of oneself,' 'egocentric,' 'incapable of object-love' have become attached to it. Even psychoanalysts are not always free of such judgmental, emotional use of the word—although they try for neutrality (p. xviii).”In a sense, Miller is right. There is a second meaning of narcissism in psychoanalytic theory: sexual attraction to one’s own body. Yet this is clearly not the definition she is using here. She means that self-adulation is a good and noble thing.
“As soon as we look more closely and examine their origins, we shall see that other moralizing, derogatory words also will lose their popular clear-cut character (p. xix).” “[I]t is my aim in this book to break away from judgmental, isolating, and therefore discriminating terminology (p. xx).”
“A father who grew up in surroundings inimical to instinctual drives,” she explains, “may well be inhibited in his sexual relationships in marriage. He may even remain polymorphous perverse and first dare to look properly at a female genital, play with it, and feel aroused while he is bathing his small daughter. A mother may perhaps have been shocked as a small girl by the unexpected sight of an erect penis and so developed fear of the male genital, or she may have experienced it as a symbol of violence in the primal scene without being able to confide in anyone. Such a mother may now be able to gain control over her fear in relationship to her tiny son. She may, for example, dry him after his bath in such a manner that he has an erection, which is not dangerous or threatening for her. She may massage her son's penis, right up to puberty, in order ‘to treat his phimosis’ without having to be afraid. Protected by the unquestioning love that every child has for his mother she can carry on with her genuine, hesitating sexual exploration that had been broken off too soon” (Miller, Drama, pp. 74-5).
“A child who has been allowed to be egoistic, greedy, and asocial long enough will develop spontaneous pleasure in sharing and giving” (p. xix).
“… I reck not how Fate deals with me
But my unhappy children—.
... for my daughters twain, poor innocent maids,
For them, I pray thee, care, and, if thou willst,
O might I feel their touch and make my moan.
Could I but blindly touch them with my hands
I'd think they still were mine, as when I saw.
[ANTIGONE and ISMENE are led in.]
What say I? can it be my pretty ones
Whose sobs I hear? Has Creon pitied me
And sent me my two darlings? Can this be?
‘Tis true; ‘twas I procured thee this delight,
Knowing the joy they were to thee of old” (Sophocles, Oedipus Rex, Storr translation).
“In his novel Le Lys dans la vallée, Honoré de Balzac described his childhood. His mother preferred his brother, gave Honoré first into the care of a nurse and then sent him away to school. He suffered greatly and all his life courted his mother in the guise of different women. ... The very hopelessness of his wooing gave him the possibility of developing his own emotional wealth and the ability to freely develop his exceptional capacity for suffering” (Miller, Drama, p. 31).
“Perhaps the same is true of Vincent Van Gogh, whose mother, throughout her life, mourned and idealized the first Vincent who had died very young (Humberto Nagera, Vincent Van Gogh, 1967; Miller, p. 31-200).
“The disparagement and humiliation he was subjected to at school were as nothing compared to the repressions he suffered at home. Chekhov’s father was hot-tempered and uncouth, and he treated the members of his family with extreme severity. The children were beaten almost every day, they had to get up at 5 in the morning and help out in the shop before going to school and as soon as they got back, so that they had very little time for their homework. In the winter it was so cold in the basement shop that even the ink froze. The three brothers served the customers until late in the evening, together with young apprentices who were also beaten regularly by their employer and were sometimes so exhausted that they fell asleep on their feet” (Elsbeth Wolffheim, Anton Tschechow, Rowohlt 2001, p. 13; Miller, “Depression: Compulsive Self-Deception,” alice-miller.com).
“I see a green meadow, on which there is a white coffin. I am afraid that my mother is in it, but I open the lid and, luckily, it is not my mother but me (Miller, The Drama of the Gifted Child, p. 13).”
“I lived in a glass house into which my mother could look at any time. In a glass house, however, you cannot conceal anything without giving yourself away, except by hiding it under the ground. And then you cannot see it yourself either” (Drama, p. 21).It turns out that Miller herself was just such a parent:
“Martin [her son] endured another traumatic experience in the wake of being sent to a psychoanalyst by his mother. What he didn’t know was that his mother had arranged for the therapist to record the sessions with her son and play them back to her” (Sela, op. cit.). “I wanted to be autonomous,” he says, “and my mother was angry at me for that” (ibid).
“The repressed or split-off fantasies of grandiosity of the depressive are easily discovered, for example, in his moral masochism. He has especially severe standards that apply only to himself. In other people he accepts without question thoughts and actions that, in himself, he would consider mean or bad when measured against his high ego ideal. Others are allowed to be ‘ordinary,’ but that he can never be (pp. 44-5).”
|"The wise and profound bestseller"|
“It would not be surprising if our unconscious anger should find no better way than once more to make use of a weaker person and to make him take the unavailable parents' place [sic]. This can be done most easily with one's own children, or with patients, who at times are as dependent on their analysts as children are on their parents” (Miller, Drama, p. 23).
|Martyrdom of St. Dymphna|
“The continual disappointment in my efforts to bring any analysis to a real conclusion; the running away of people who for a period of time had been most gripped [by analysis]; the absence of the complete successes on which I had counted; the possibility of explaining to myself the partial successes in other ways, in the usual fashion — this was the first group. Then the surprise that in all cases, the father, not excluding my own, had to be accused of being perverse — the realization of the unexpected frequency of hysteria, with precisely the same conditions prevailing in each, whereas surely such widespread perversions against children are not very probable. (The [incidence] of perversion would have to be immeasurably more frequent than the [resulting] hysteria because the illness, after all, occurs only where there has been an accumulation of events and there is a contributory factor that weakens the defense.) Then, third, the certain insight that there are no indications of reality in the unconscious, so that one cannot distinguish between truth and fiction that has been cathected with affect. (Accordingly, there would remain the solution that the sexual fantasy invariably seizes upon the theme of the parents.) Fourth, the consideration that in the most deep-reaching psychosis the unconscious memory does not break through, so that the secret of the childhood experiences is not disclosed even in the most confused delirium.” (letter to Wilhelm Fliess, 1897; Masson, loc. 1492).
“What Dr. Nidart discovered, to his evident puzzlement, was that Adelina would ‘invent stories’ of what had happened to her, in order to cover up the crimes of her parents against her own person, ‘imagining’ falls and accidents, rather than allow others to know the horrible truth of what had been done to her. As we shall see, her parents had kept her literally hermetically sealed off from the real world outside, and in a pathetic, heartbreaking gesture of tenderness toward her own tormentors, she wished to protect them ... from the world” (Tardieu, op. cit.; Masson, loc. 397).
“She (or, more rarely, he) becomes ashamed, the victim of the unconscious remorse of the parent that is expressed in violent anger toward the child” (Ferenczi, op. cit.; Masson, loc. 1986).
“The analyst behaved with neutrality, but actually felt something quite different. These feelings, especially when they were negative, were not conveyed to the patient. This, Ferenczi felt, was hypocrisy. Moreover, he noticed that his patients were very sensitive to this hypocrisy, and try as he might to conceal his real feelings, patients invariably uncovered them. This sensitivity to genuine emotional states began to preoccupy Ferenczi more and more (the diary discusses it at length). He speculated on why his patients were so sensitive to issues of truth and honesty” (Masson, loc. 2101).
Osric: I thank your lordship, it is very hot.
Hamlet: No, believe me, ‘tis very cold; the wind is northerly.
Osric: It is indifferent cold, my lord, indeed.
Hamlet: But yet methinks it is very sultry and hot for my complexion.
Osric: Exceedingly, my lord; it is very sultry.
Hamlet: Do you see yonder cloud that's almost in shape of a camel?
Polonius: By the mass, and 'tis like a camel, indeed.
Hamlet: Methinks it is like a weasel.
Polonius: It is backed like a weasel.
Hamlet: Or like a whale?
Polonius: Very like a whale.
|The old flag|
|The hateful object|
|The real Confederate flag.|
|Surely you have to admit he was fairly good.|