January 30, 2003 14:46 | URLs

What ails America?

perfectly feasible possibility

Dissociation is a mental process which produces a lack of connection in a person's thoughts, memories, feelings, actions, or sense of identity. During the period of time when a person is dissociating, certain information is not associated with other information as it normally would be.


Disassociation is also a characteristic of schizophrenia; it is also a way of dealing with trauma or violence in the short-term.

The trick is to hope the disassociation fades into the longer term, punctured by daily reminders the world is not or has not come to an end and that safety (peace) is a function of human interaction and causality.

On a related note, I looked up the word "fugue" in the OED last night to make sense of the Bach I was listening to. To my surprise, I found out that not only is a fugue a musical composition built around a recurrence and variation on themes in a contrapuntal field, but it is also a clinical, or more specifically, psychological term:

A flight from one's own identity, often involving travel to some unconsciously desired locality. It is a dissociative reaction to shock or emotional stress in a neurotic, during which all awareness of personal identity is lost though the person's outward behaviour may appear rational. On recovery, memory of events during the state is totally repressed but may become conscious under hypnosis or psycho-analysis. A fugue may also be part of an epileptic or hysterical seizure.

Let it be know, however, that this is by no means an attempt to explain americans' or gwb's traumas--for fear of blundering, we should all leave that at the hands of the professionals like Jane Goodall.

3- Boris Anthony

Bach's fugues often leave me shaking on the floor in fetal postion.

Seriously though, very interesting what you say here. It also reminds me of something I am currently reading: "The Triumph of Narrative" by Robert Fulford. He speaks of history, master narratives and *stories*. he touches upon the importance of personal stories and how people who "fall apart" often do so because they lose the thread of their own story. In other words, their "world comes crashing down".

Highly recomend this book to you Nazo. 175 pages, so it's a quick read and it will bring you much. :)