Agnon’s Story is the first complete psychoanalytic biography of the Nobel-Prize-winning Hebrew writer S.Y. Agnon. It investigates the hidden links between his stories and his biography. Agnon was deeply ambivalent about the most important emotional “objects” of his life, in particular his “father-teacher,” his ailing, depressive and symbiotic mother, his emotionally-fragile wife, whom he named after her and his adopted “home-land” of Israel. Yet he maintained an incredible emotional resiliency and ability to “sublimate” his emotional pain into works of art. This biography seeks to investigate the emotional character of his literary canon, his ambivalence to his family and the underlying narcissistic grandiosity of his famous “modesty.”
This innovative collection of essays employs historical and sociological approaches to provide important case studies of asylums, psychiatry and mental illness in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Leading scholars in the field working on a variety of geographical, temporal, socio-cultural, economic and political contexts, show how class and gender have historically affected and conditioned the thinking, language, and processes according to which society identified and responded to the mentally ill. Contributors to this volume focus on both class and gender and thus are able to explore their interaction, whereas previous publications addressed class or gender incidentally, partially, or in isolation. By adopting this dual focus as its unifying theme, the volume is able to supply new insights into such interesting topics as patient careers, the relationship between lay and professional knowledge of insanity, the boundaries of professional power, and the creation of psychiatric knowledge. Particularly useful to student readers (and to those new to this academic field) is a substantive and accessible introduction to existing scholarship in the field, which signposts the ways in which this collection challenges, adjusts and extends previous perspectives.
Psychology of religion has been enjoying considerable attention of late; the number of publications and people involved in the field is rapidly increasing. It is, however, one of the oldest branches within psychology in general, and one of the few in which an interdisciplinary approach has been kept alive and fostered. The fate of the field has been quite varied in the countries where psychology of religion has been initiated and developed during the 20th century. In this volume, some aspects of this international history are examined. Coming from six different Western countries, each of the contributors has a record in the historiography of psychology and profound knowledge of psychology of religion. Their approaches combine elements from the history of mentalities, the social history of science and biographical studies.
The volume contains in-depth treatments of such topics as the growth of the field as reflected in university politics, developments within international organizations, and the personal involvement of contributors to the field. A wealth of information is provided on the background of the work of well known psychologists of religion like James Henry Leuba, Oskar Pfister, Gordon Allport, Werner Gruehn, Antoine Vergote and others.
Most non-malignant chronic pain is medically unexplained. But that has not stopped doctors from trying. These improvisations at the limit of medical knowledge offer a way into the history of neurosis.
Lesionless pain was a paradigmatic problem of clinical method after 1800. It was central to the emergence of neuralgia, spinal irritation, surgical hysteria, railway spine and hysterical conversion. Evidence of a nineteenth-century tradition of theoretical discussion about the relationship between chronic pain and pathological lesion, trauma, mood, memory and personality is brought together here for the first time. A wide range of medical texts is surveyed, including pathology, surgery, physiology, neurology, psychiatry and psychoanalysis. We see the medical gaze first penetrate the tissues of the body then extend to examine the language and mental state of the pain patient.
This history of chronic pain should be of interest to medical historians, pain clinicians, liaison psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and psychotherapists.
Anti-psychiatry' is a movement more sloganized than analysed. Until now it has been associated in the English-speaking world primarily with R.D. Laing and a coterie of his associates, and a radical critique not just of psychiatric hospitalization but of the very premises of psychiatry itself and the basic institutions of society, especially the family.
But are these notions accurate, or rather distorted images, created by Laing himself or by the media? In this book, which has emerged out of an Anglo-Dutch conference held in June 1997, the realities of critical psychiatry are explored, using comparisons and contrasts between the British and the Dutch experiences as a probe. There were, it turns out, various distinct anti-psychiatries - indeed, hardly anybody actually used that label about themselves - and they played a role in the reform no less than the rejection of regular psychiatry.
In this volume we have brought together some of the most important contributions of Antoon Vergote to the field of what is now called 'clinical psychology of religion'. Most of these contributions were not published before in English. They cover the field in two ways. On the one hand we selected some articles in which Vergote reflects about the foundations of the (clinical) psychology of religion. This first part of the book is about the psychoanalytic and philosophical-anthropological approach of some major topics in the study of religion : e.g. mythical thinking and symbolisation, moral law and the idea of sin, religious experience... . In this part we also included a critical reflection about the classic psychoanalytic criticism of religion and about the epistemology and the limits of the psychology of religion. The second part, on the other hand, contains clinical-empirical and psycho-historical studies about concrete religious phenomena. The first section of this part is, amongst other topics, about the psychological approach of the person Jesus, about the psychological profile of the priest and, about some aspects of folk religiosity. The second section deals with problems in the field of mental health and religion : the differentiation of true and false mysticism, religion and psychopathology and a psychological approach of the experience of visions and apparitions.
Contemporary psychology is reviving with new vigor an interest in hermeneutics, or the human science of interpretation. After a period in which positivistic and statistical approaches have been dominant, new methods are being explored. Most of these focus on narrative, cultural analysis, embodiment and interdisciplinarity. Because of its specific object of study, psychology of religion has never been without an hermeneutical emphasis. In this field of psychology scholarship, these new directions are especially welcomed as they offer perspectives for research which attempts to interpret religion as a human phenomenon.
This volume presents hermeneutical psychological studies on religion which rely on both classical and contemporary approaches. Dealing with topics like mysticism, religious symbols, life stories and mental health, contributions to the volume draw on a variety of perspectives. These range from psychoanalysis, narrative psychology and feminism to perspectives drawn deep from the wellspring of interdisciplinary collaboration with anthropology and history.
This book offers a bold and controversial new thesis regarding the nature of prejudice. The authors' central claim is that prejudice is not simply learned, rather it is predisposed in all human beings and is thus the foundation for ethical valuation. They aim to destroy the illusion that prejudice is merely the result of learned beliefs, socially conditioned attitudes, or pathological states of development. Contrary to traditional accounts, prejudice itself is not a negative attribute of human nature, rather it is the necessary precondition for the self and civilization to emerge. Defined as the preferential self-expression of valuation, prejudice gives rise to greater existential complexities and novelties that elevate selfhood and society to higher states of ethical realization. Rather than offer another contribution that highlights the destructive nature of prejudice, Mills and Polanowski address the ontological, psychological, and dialectical origins of prejudice as it manifests itself in the process of selfhood and culture. They provide an original conceptualization of the phenomenology of prejudice and its dialectical instantiation in the ontology of the individual, worldhood, and the very structures of subjectivity. As a unique synthesis of psychoanalysis, Hegelian idealism, Heideggerian existential ontology, and Whiteheadian process philosophy, prejudice is the indispensable ground for humanity to actualize its highest potentiality-for-Being. The striking result is (1) a revolutionary theory of human nature, (2) a new ethical system, and (3) the elevation of dialectical ethics to the domain of metaphysics.
This book focuses attention on the central elements of human religious existence. Vergote's primary aim and viewpoint are clear: to examine empirically and to interpret dynamically the psychological factors at work in the field of religion. Vergote consistently adheres to the position that psychology is neither philosophy nor theology and that its task is not to explain religion. In this work he situates religion as a cultural fact and studies how persons orient themselves to it, positively and/or negatively. Rather than emphasise and juxtapose belief and unbelief as alternative positions, he sees them as threads of experiences interwoven throughout the human existence of persons and institutions. In this context he studies motivations and their ambivalences, religious experiences and their ambiguities, conflicts between religious belief and unbelief, and the various expressions and practices of religion.