I was thinking about this and wondered why I hadn't picked up a novel for some time. I tend to read biographies and autobiographies, I suppose they are real albeit sometimes sanitised.Approaching Infinity said:When you come to identify with a character in a novel or movie, you are in essence learning a lesson vicariously. The identification leads you through an emotional progression. If a character grows, a part of you grows. In this regard, Dabrowski had a few insights. Dabrowski always advised for developing individuals to read the autobiographies or biographies of exemplars. To read of their experiences and growth facilitates the growth of the reader, almost as if you come to "resonate" with their experiences, thus learning from them. Also, to read novels dealing with higher level "dynamisms", like selflessness, altruism, sacrifice, morals. If you identify with a character who is then put in a situation that requires self-sacrifice, if they take that road, it helps solidify selflessness within oneself. What I've noticed today is that there are very few, if any, "exemplars" in modern movies and literature. At least not in the popular stuff.
Oh yes, I love that one too. It was discussed hereDivide By Zero said:-Pan's Labyrinth
Wow, very shocking view of fascist times in Spain with a clearly psychopathic character.
n. pl. ca·thar·ses (-sz)
1. Medicine Purgation, especially for the digestive system.
2. A purifying or figurative cleansing of the emotions, especially pity and fear, described by Aristotle as an effect of tragic drama on its audience.
3. A release of emotional tension, as after an overwhelming experience, that restores or refreshes the spirit.
a. A technique used to relieve tension and anxiety by bringing repressed feelings and fears to consciousness.
b. The therapeutic result of this process; abreaction.
But what if there is more meaning in art then release tension?abreaction [ˌæbrɪˈækʃən]
(Psychoanalysis) Psychoanal the release and expression of emotional tension associated with repressed ideas by bringing those ideas into consciousness
Excellent illustrations, I love them. They capture very well the essence and atmosphere of LOTR, IMO.Corto Maltese said:This is where you can see most of Howe's work:
this is my favorite of all LOTR illustrations:
That's how I do it now,Laura said:Daydreaming, watching movies, playing games, reading, used as a form of
learn, experimentation and rehearsal of real-life issues that are played
out free from the constraints of reality, where we can give free rein to
our emotions and ideas so as to test them, wonder about them, and then
select good ones and make plans to implement them, seems to me to be
healthy and life-affirming.
Hi shellycheval - just a reminder of the definitions of 'dissociate' and 'disassociate': ;)shellycheval said:Positive disassociation definitely has its place in doing The Work IMHO. It appears to be a time of recharging--a time to stop the "hamster wheel" monkey mind and reset. Appreciating any of the arts holds one's attention in the moment and shuts out all the craziness for a short time. My walls are filled with prints of Degas, Van Gogh, Cezanne, Sargent, Whistler, and Waterhouse, etc. I definitely think beautiful art changes the energy in a place for the positive, and that the opposite is also true--think of the Denver airport murals! I can read for hours, and love watching good movies. Looking at any of them is like taking a mini trip somewhere for a time--very soothing.
Creating art also appears to be a powerful way to disassociate positively. To do any creative work, drawing, painting, music, etc. one must be present, in the moment, and have a good flow of energy. This is also true of the physical arts involving movement like dance, the various martial arts, and some sports movements. When one is "in the zone" so to speak, the rest of the world falls away and there is only the movement and the moment. Mind, body and spirit harmonize to the present movement and one gets "carried away." Horseback riding does this for me, and I have had people who are into dance report the same feelings. The good thing about the arts is there is something out there for everyone. I have had some very nice "vacations" knitting an afghan, while listening to "Celtic Circle," and looking up at " The Lady of Shallot."
I agree with you I have gone through something similar myself. I applied for several art-schools be it for acting or photography, it is indeed very difficult to get in, if you have not elbows and when you are not full of self esteem. Not to say that it is impossible to get in without elbows, but my impression has been later on you will need them to sell your work, to get on stage and something like that, unfortunately. I struggled a long time with acting and what is happening behind the scenes, most of the time the egotistical behavior, lying and false words, made me kind of sick and took me a long process over some years to put art as a professional -wish- aside and to study something totally different.Lúthien said:[...]
Back in high school, I took a course in visual arts, as I was considering entering an art school. I was pretty soon disillusioned and discouraged by the
teacher: drawings and paintings I showed him were not ABSTRACT enough. I was showing him real, concrete things like still life or cartoon type characters; but this is NOT art. Art is supposed to be abstract, "intellectual", conceptual. In short, cold, distant, and inhuman --something that the man in the street, the "vile populace", can't comprehend or relate too. This kind of art is indeed pathological.
After witnessing one of my friend's very negative experience with art school, I'm glad I didn't choose this path. Students as well as teachers were just a
bunch of narcissistic navel gazing and arrogant people who thought they were the creme de la creme, just because they took a bowl, filled it with water and exposed it in an empty room -- and teachers called that art...
This experience was very destructive for my friend, and she fell into depression after the teachers trashed her school year project (I witnessed it, and they were really nasty to her). She had to give up. And yet, I think she had potential.
Another student of that school was also trashed for taking pictures which the teachers deemed as "too esthetic". That sums it all up, I think.
This reminds me of another "anecdote" regarding that particular art school my friend attended to. There was a story running in that school, that several years ago, one of the final year students hung himself… as part of his "final year school project". I don't know if it's true, but it just gives an idea of theAnother of these mental giants, Walter Benjamin, believed that the purpose of art was to make people as miserable as possible, for pessimism was an essential preliminary to world revolution. "To organize pessimism," he pointed out portentously, "means nothing other than to expel the moral metaphor from politics." Benjamin succeeded only too well in making himself miserable. He committed suicide.
kind of mentality being promulgated, where suicide is considered as artistic and where art has to be pessimistic, nihilistic, driving people into despair.
This reminded me of the movie from Pink Floyd: "The wall" and one specific scene: "The laddie reckons himself a poet! [...] Absolute rubbish laddie."_http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lunIGnMpETs&fmt=18&annotation_id=annotation_466579&feature=ivGertrudes said:In Secondary school, in my home country, we have to choose our field of study. Since I had been very fond of drawing all my life (something that could be taken as positive dissociation?) I chose visual arts. It didn't go very well...actually it didn't go well at all since it turned out to be the last 3 years where I would ever grab a pencil to draw. My experience was similar to what was described in Luthien's post (reply 39) To top all that up, one of my teachers once asked me to describe a painting that I enjoyed, and I described precisely Venus from Botticelli,
his comment was destructive, something in the lines of that I should be persuing more intelligent art... Adolescence is a very vulnerable age, I thought that as a teacher he should know better then I did and repressed my own feelings. The consequences of this were nasty.
I haven't thought about this for years and when I started reading this thread, the memories came back and are now extremely hard to swallow back.....
The most vivid memories I have from those classes, and that is part of the reason why I found the article so disturbing, is the never ending discusions about how any and everything is art, including Marcel Duchamp's urinols! My values were turned upside down, I felt confused, stupid and eventually lost interest in art. Loosing interest was not real, but more a way of not having to face the fact that I didn't understand it and because of that I was probably stupid.
What I like sometimes to do is, not to look for concepts by itself, but I try to find something out about the private life of the artist, what he/she has been going through, what kind of human it has been/it is. As an example I really liked Picassos paintings, so I bought a book from him and tried as well to get a glimpse behind these paintings, with the result that I have now an ambivalent feeling for his paintings, because he had been really kind of selfish and self-centered.Mrs.Tigersoap said:In art I tend to look for concepts, for what the artist was going through when he painted/wrote and I'm always more interested about the "vécu" and the experience behind the canvas/book. Laura's post forced me to wonder why. So I thought about all afternoon.
_http://www.nytimes.com/1996/11/08/books/magician-and-miscreant-of-modernism-continued.htmlNew York Times said:From time to time, this point of view leads Mr. Richardson to rationalize Picasso's selfish behavior: he writes, for instance, that Picasso ''behaved with exemplary concern'' when his mistress Eva Gouel lay dying of cancer, even though the artist was already auditioning other women as her replacement. Such lapses, however, are rare. For the most part, Mr. Richardson is even-handed in his depiction of Picasso's tumultuous personal life, emphasizing the ways in which his relationships were mirrored in his art: how the painter routinely deified and eroticized his mistresses in his work, then later dissected them as whores and beasts as his love for them began to darken.
IMO this is a really beautiful view on novels, somehow it remided me as well on this forum, to learn from the -real- stories from each other.Approaching Infinity said:[...]
In a nutshell, I'd say the most valuable dissociative dramas are those with flawed, complex, realistic characters who learn or grow in some way, which takes you through a similar process. One of my recent favorites was the German Sophie Scholl movie. The scene where her mother visits her in prison before her execution was heartbreaking. Not only did the film give practical insights into the nature of pathocracy, it also took you through the inner experiences of just a few people who were forced to learn some big lessons as a result of their own carelessness.
I go with you, to take the prayer of the soul: "Of all creation [...] As I give bread to others" can mean everything, we just have to find our talents and our purpose I think, in order to give and to create (be it sewing, digging whatever). And as well as RedFox stated art could also be our "bread".Green_Manalishi said:As for creating art i'm not sure, don't get me wrong it is something very important, and as a someone said, "every human being is born a poet", we just have to find it where it is inside of us. I speak for my self, i really like to draw, even if my natural gift for it isn't that great, and it seems that it serves more to put things outside than to put things inside. Perhaps when we observe someone else's art, that interests us, the process reverts.
The question we need to ask is: Who runs the Art Market and how did it become a freak circus?
Laura in Almost Human said:[...] it isn't even necessary for a grand and logistically complex government mind-control program to be in operation in order to produce the conditions necessary to ultimate enforce total controls on humanity. It is only necessary to have strategically placed psychopaths in the population, to train and influence selected ones in particular ways through what would be seen on the surface as "ordinary means", and simply calculate the fact that they will always operate with their dominant strategy - serving self.
How you describe yourself in your post Lúthien, describes me to a T. i don't know however if this is about "steeling someone else's fantasy". For my part, and i think might be true for you too, i use books/music/movies/stories/art, as a way to, yes, take something that somebody else created out there, but in order to assimilate it/make use for it for my own purposes. For example, when i enter a movie/book/story, i do it in order to find something in it that i am in need of it: a lesson, new knowledge, new perspectives, different examples, hope, catharsis, role models, a reason to cry my eyes out or laugh out loud and release emotional tension. And i am too fully in it: i am part of the plot, perhaps one character or many, part of the painting, the music travels through me.Lúthien said:About dissociation: all my life I "stole energy from somebody else's fantasy", ie pathological dissociation, living in a fantasy world and not being in touch with the real, ie not sorting out my own life creatively. It's difficult to get rid of this strong tendency, for example when I'm strongly affected by a movie, I tend to live with it / still "be in it" for days. Same for music. I'm not even talking necessarily or only about supernatural/ black and white dramas like Matrix or Lord of the Rings (which ARE among my favourites though) but art that emotionally affects me or stirs my imagination or impresses me (like Preraphaelite art, for example). The problem with me is that I don't use it for bringing creativity in my own life. I'm more passive. Though, thinking about it, it might not be so. I mean, there are some movies/books that made me think and reflect and brought up a lot of emotions, and that sure can be considered as positive.
it really makes me wonder if i am on the right track with the above.Laura said:So, my question relates more directly to: Okay, we know that we have this need to get relief, let's figure out how BEST to utilize it to undo the damage that is being done.
excellent portrayal by Tom Cruise of a guy who hated his misogynist father but ended up the same as him, and his blindness in not seeing it coming and becoming! And that's just one of the stories!An epic mosaic of several interrelated characters in search of happiness, forgiveness, and meaning
- the classic "Citizen Caine", about the secret longing of a powerful man and his private life (if you haven't watched it and you intent to, do NOT read the plot)A Dutch matron establishes and, for several generations, oversees a close-knit, matriarchal community where feminism and liberalism thrive.
- Real story movies and biographies, like "City of God", "Erin Brockovich" andThe story of how the novel "Mrs. Dalloway" affects three generations of women, all of whom, in one way or another, have had to deal with suicide in their lives.