Self-Help Books Use Personal Narratives from Therapeutic Settings

I have trouble “trusting” books by Susan Forward and some others because the examples seem rather inflammatory, possibly even exaggerated.  But the experiences described are very, very relatable – clearly effective rhetorically due to that sense of interpersonal resonance, but does this also indicate epistemic validity?  Is the ethos “real” as in authentic?  Or manufactured…

The Sciences, Humanities, and Autobiography

There’s a huge tension between the sciences and the humanities as to what “counts” as knowledge, while the social sciences appear to draw from and contribute to both.  (yes, this is an extreme simplification – each individual discipline within the sciences, social sciences, and humanities will have its own connections and locations within the pantheon…

Trauma and Standpoint: Inflicting Hierarchy via Mimesis

Leys describes the memetic and antimimetic aspects of trauma to be one of the sticking points of most theories of trauma.  Past psychoanalysts found that their patients would imitate hypnotic suggestion, indicating that the memories might be implanted (citation) – the survivors of abuse also appeared to adopt the perspectives over their abusers (citation). This is…

Pathology: Hypnosis and Trauma

Ruth Leys focuses heavily on psychoanalysts of the past century-plus in order to illustrate how our societal conceptions of trauma have shifted over time.  Yet so much of what these researchers theorized about trauma was heavily dependent upon their individual beliefs regarding the efficacy of hypnosis.  And this, to me, seems terribly limiting (at least…