Relationship with self and others laing

R.D. Laing Summary

relationship with self and others laing

Pantheon Books, - Family & Relationships - pages R.D. LAING Snippet view - The Self and Others: Further Studies in Sanity and Madness. The Divided Self: An Existential Study in Sanity and Madness (Penguin . fails to address the real underlying problems at hand in interpersonal relationships. Self and Others is a psychological study by R. D. Laing, first published in It was re-issued The book formed part of a series of writings by Laing in the Sixties on the relationship of madness to the self within a social context or nexus, .

In Laing's view, drugs make it more difficult for a person to think and therefore interfere with the kind of personal work that can lead to true recovery. I read one case history of a member of the psychiatric staff who shared a room with one patient who defecated in the room and often screamed apparently uncontrollably. Laing's approach took the existential view that each person, including the schizophrenic is ultimately responsible for his or her own behavior, and ultimately his or her own recovery.

He viewed his role as that of providing conditions that would facilitate that recovery. For a time there were a number of treatment facilities around the world that followed the Laingian model. To the best of my knowledge, today it has been largely abandoned, both because it is very expensive in terms of professional time and effort and drugs are cheaper and can be administered by poorly paid ward personnel, and because the psychiatric establishment is committed to a medical model rather than an existential model.

The situation has to be discovered: There is no a priori reason to believe or disbelieve a story anyone tells us.

relationship with self and others laing

Different people usually have different stories about a situation. A psychiatric "history" of the situation is a sample of the situation. It is a story, one person's way of defining the situation. They are experts in construing situations of a few standard psychiatric myths. Laing notes that he often finds that what he thinks is going on in a family bears almost no resemblance to what anyone in the family expriences or thinks is happening.

relationship with self and others laing

Often "there is concerted family resistance to discovering what is going on, and there are complicated strategems to keep everyone in the dark. We may be more aware of our image of the family than of the family itself. Some sign of recognition by another person that is relevant to an evocative act. This may include disapproval.

RD Laing - The Divided Self () | The List

A person's 'own' identity can never be completely abstracted from his identity-for-others. Acts that masquerade as confirmation, but are counterfeit. For example, I define who you are, then confirm your behavior and being that conforms with my definition. Those that deal with some aspect of a person's behavior other than those the person is concerned with.

relationship with self and others laing

Misdefinition of the issues. A plausible misrepresentation of what the exploiters do to the exploited. A person "maps" some accepted social definition of reality onto his or her experience and then acts as if that map reflects his or her experience. Or else feels terribly oppressed and unseen, if the personal experience is very different from the "mapped" pseudo-experience.

Video on theorist R.D. Laing

Sometimes the product of A and B, in a marriage ceremony, is a marriage. Both people are married in all senses at once.

In our society many of the old rituals have lost much of their power. New ones have not arisen. Anyone breaking this rule is liable to invalidation.

Self and Others

One is not supposed to feel married if one has not been married. Conversely, one is supposed to feel married if one 'is. Wait until you have a child. Then you will feel you are a mother,' and so on. In very disturbed people, one finds what may be regarded as delusional structures, still recognizably related to family situations. It is superimposition of one set of relations onto another: Only if they mismatch sufficiently in the eyes of others, is the operation regarded as psychotic.

That is, the operation is not regarded as psychotic per se. Projection is done by one person as his own experience of the other. Induction is done by one person to the other's experience. One does not tell him what to be, but tells him what he is. Such attributions, in context, are many times more powerful than orders or other forms of coercion or persuasion. Simply tell him he feels it. Better still, tell a third party, in front of him, that he feels it. But Laing takes an existential approach which is bolstered by actual case studies of patients estranged from themselves and from society.

And although requiring intellectual effort at times, this book resonates with humanity.

relationship with self and others laing

I found it rewarding well beyond the scope of the play I was writing and learned a lot about myself, imagination and humanity. It came as some relief to me that the schizophrenic I had created, based on a friend of mine, was, by Laing's standards, pretty accurate. But accuracy isn't authenticity. I used this book to create such authenticity of character that I went beyond what might have been possible without it.

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I found the explanatory chapters interesting enough but the case studies engulfed me. I even, at times, began to fear for my own sanity, such was the incisiveness of the prose. One night lying in bed, when my wife was asleep, I held my hand in the air and tried to disassociate from it such disassociation is one of the early symptoms of schizophrenia.

I stared and stared at my hand.

relationship with self and others laing