IT IS SHAME THAT GUARDS THE BOUNDARY BETWEEN PUBLIC AND PRIVATE
Quotes from Donald L. NATHANSON in Shame and Pride, Affect, Sex and the Birth of the Self,
Ed. W.W.Norton & Company, New York. London,1992.
By linking dyscontrol to shame Erasmus creates or at least requires the separateness, the isolation, the insularity, the invisible wall that now exists between one person and another.
It seems likely that Greek and roman society, at its highest also required affect modulation and also fostered this isolation of one person from another. P.440
(…) Home became the first place where we learned how to live in the world-what to hide and what to show, how much of self to reveal and in what manner. P.448
SHAME AND PHOTOGRAPHY
Where shame had created a new culture of privacy, the camera ripped it asunder. Indeed as privacy grew more and more important, and as more and more of our society came to be controlled by forces operating behind closed doors, an intense pressure developed around the seen and the unseen. (…) For most people words are only a poor substitute for seeing. One picture is worth a thousand words when they are your words and my picture. What I see, I can evaluate myself. Words can be used to hide the truth. We trust what we can see far more than what we read. What you see is what you get.
I believe that photography has done more to change shame than any other force in the history of our society. P.451 (…) we were enable to look privacy at the face.p453
MOVIES AND AFFECT DYSCONTROL: SHAME CONVERTED TO ANGER AND FEAR TO EXCITEMENT
Two developmental lines may be discerned. On the one hand, shame continued to increase, conquering more and more territory. During the 19th century, those who identifies with the ruling classes became proper, prudish, fastidious and pissy. Our code name from this process was taken from its presentation in England during the reign of queen Victoria. There were, nevertheless a Victorian Europe and a Victorian America, lands where the good queen herself did not rule but where social customs was governed by the relation to shame- as- propriety she came to symbolize.(…) The other line of development was ushered by technology, and it ripped an ever-widening hole in the fabric of shame controlled society. Pp449450
In the movies for instance; “ for the first time in centuries shame and affect dyscontrol have been unlinked and allowed to travel separate paths “P.471
“ The bad guys in the movies are different these days. These are vigilant films in which the climate of horrific and disgusting execution of the villain, rendered as never before permitted on a film, is excused on the basis of Talionic law. They are designed less to show the moral superiority of the enlightened hero than to demonstrate for the great mass of macho men these new trends in cruelty. What they do to women is more humiliating, more deadly, more violent and more graphically rendered at any time in our history. I do not believe that the economic success of this genre depends a whit on a societal interest in the triumph of good over evil.” P.470
Observation: We are moving more and more in a culture of explosion, as a huge and growing segment of our society has adopted the macho script ( attack other), within which shame is converted to anger and fear to excitement.
Picture from Mandala Facebook
Donald L. NATHANSON in Shame and Pride, Affect, Sex and the Birth of the Self,
Ed. W.W.Norton & Company, New York. London,1992.
PERSONAL AFFECT MODULATION SCRIPT
No one emerges from the birth canal with the slightest idea of the modulation of anything-and we cannot teach what we have not learned. Almost everything we know about soothing, calming, relaxing, consoling, comforting, satisfying, cheering, or loving others has been learned from someone else and adapted for our own use within highly personal affect modulation scripts. P.402
Those who benefit most from successful therapy seem to find their own level. An enlightened adult lives and works in terms of his or her true complement of attributes. P.404
THE PLASTICITY OF THE AFFECTIVE SYSTEM: THE SEDATIVE SCRIPTS
Simply stated, Tomkins sees some people as developing what he calls deprivation affect, a complex and highly magnified affective state which the individual attributes to the absence of whatever substance or activity has come to bring solace. He gives the name sedative scripts to the actions through which one attempts to reduce the deprivation affect by which
the absence of this substance or activity has been made to appear dangerous.
Not infrequently, people become quiet upset that something might interfere with a sedative script. These are times when we worry that we might run out of cigarettes, alcohol, or anything chosen to relieve or reduce deprivation affect. Tomkins calls the affect that accompanies such ideas addictive affect. An addictive act is one taken to prevent or limit addictive affect; this is when we light more than one cigarette at the time so there is no possibility of being without one, drink in order to avoid the way we might feel if we needed a drink and couldn’t find one, horde or earn money to ward off the danger of poverty we will therefore never feel, engineer sexual release so we will not get the kind of nervousness calmed by an orgasm. In true sedative act, once is enough because the psychological device
Works to make us feel better. In addiction however, one never really achieve sedation because what is being ameliorated is only the dense and terrible affect associated with the idea that we might not have access to our sedative script when we really need it!
Note: Food can be sedative:” Food is both relief from hunger and a modulator of distress, we learn from earliest childhood that food is a calming substance, a sedative.” P.422 So can be “ the immersion on physical activity”p.420
WE ARE MORE THAN THE SUM OF OUR PARTS
“ I have attempted to show that extraordinarily dense human affect is by nature immutably complex, far more complex than can be accepted by most of who study it. Directly proportional to the density of affect seen in an individual will be the complexity of the scripts that have produce it. Social forces are important, but they are not the one true key to understanding. Neurotransmitters, drives, affect, and prewritten habit patterns are important, but we are more than the sum of our parts. Neocortical cognition is important, but notwithstanding the yearning of 19th-century rationalism it too is biological and cannot be separated from the biological field from which it evolved. Whoever wishes to help guide humans along their best paths towards their highest goals must learn all of these systems.”P.430
Picture from Mandala Face Book