Sunday, 29 June 2008

Getting better?

getting-better-all-the-time crop
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"The terror of death is ubiquitous and of such magnitude that a considerable portion of one's life energy is consumed in the denial of death. Death transcendence is a major motif in human experience - from the most deeply personal internal phenomena, our defenses, our motivations, our dreams and nightmares, to the most public macro-societal structures, our monuments, theologies, ideologies, slumber cemeteries, embalmings, our stretch into space, indeed our entire way of life - our filling time, our addiction to diversions, our unfaltering belief in the myth of progress, our drive to 'get ahead', our yearning for lasting fame."

(Irvin D. Yalom, Existential Psychotherapy, p41)


[Click here to listen/download Getting Better and here for a fabulous Gomez cover-version. I'm not a big fan of covers but I think Gomez are an exception to the rule that 'covers=watered down original'.]

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Fierce fears


[Click on image to enlarge]

How do you do an impression of Nelson Mandela?

[Oxfam advert]

I've always held out against advertising on Prozacville, but as this was for such a good cause, and because The Great Man Himself is here in London at the moment being fĂȘted by a bunch of bands he's probably never heard of ("You a big Razorlight fan, Nels?"), I finally relented.

Friday, 27 June 2008

I've seen the future brother, it is murder



When Prozac heard via Zizek about the  Jewish S.H.I.T. List – a right-wing American list of 7,000 "Self-Hating and Israel-Threatening Jews, he got very excited.

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Lacan steps up his wooing


Today is Jeannette's (aka Valium Nettesky's) birthday and I'm feeling vaguely smug because after promising I'd send her a gift for her LAST birthday, I've finally managed to accomplish the near-impossible task of going into a post-office and saying: 'Please send this to the Land of the Rising Sun, postmaster" - this afternoon.

So she'll get my birthday present probably around December 25th.

The song Jacques Lacan is singing to her is inspired by this wee ditty, which supposedly she's very much into at the moment.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

This is only for your thought (which may be inadequate here)


Jacques Lacan: one of the greatest psychoanalysts and philosophers ever to walk this planet?

OR...a knob?

You decide.

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Conversation best not had with a new mother


"Faeces, penis and baby, are all three solid bodies; they all three, by forcible entry or expulsion, stimulate a membraneous passage, i.e. the rectum and the vagina, the latter being as it were 'taken on lease' from the rectum." (Sigmund Freud, On Transformation of Instincts as Exemplified by Anal Eroticism)

In this essay, Freud suggests that a baby, a gift, a penis, money and faeces are all "ill-distinguished from one another" and "easily interchangeable". Common sense really.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Big Brother 9. Jennifer & Rachel naked. Cock sucked. Sex. Real sex (fake orgasms). On television. With Virgin (ha!) mobile phone ads every 12 minutes.


Some people worry about how many more springsummerautumnwinters they'll experience in their lifetime; I worry about how many more Big Brother Summers I will have to endure.

It's good to know that Freud had BB sussed. In a little known essay written in 1915 ('Topography and Dynamics of Human Misery as a Generator of The Entertainment For The Masses') he wrote:

'The nucleus of this form of entertainment consists of instinctual representative which seek to discharge their cathexis; that is to say, it consists of wishful impulses. These instinctual impulses are co-ordinate with one another, and are exempt from mutual contradiction. When two wishful impulses whose aims must appear to us incompatible become simultaneously active, the two impulses to do not diminish each other or cancel each other out, but combine to form an intermediate aim, a compromise.'

Move over Dr Tomas Chamorro Premuzic (know in the trade as Prose Muzak)!

To quote Prosemuzak on the wedding task: "Desire is usually good and can lead us to accomplishments, but obsession is always bad." Thank God you're around to point that out to us Dr Tomas. You can see why he became a psychologist and not a psychoanalyst - he's about as subtle as Big Brother Contestant.

Funky name though.

Friday, 13 June 2008

The epistemophilic impulse


"The early connection between the epistemophilic impulse [cf. epistemology] and sadism is very important for the whole mental development. This instinct, roused by the striving of the Oedipus tendencies, at first mainly concerns itself with the mother's womb, which is assumed to be the scene of all sexual processes and developments. The child is till dominated by the anal-sadistic libido-position which impels him to wish to appropriate the contents of the womb. He thus begins to be curious about what it contains, what it is like, etc. So the epistemophilic instinct and the desire to take possession come quite early to be most intimately connected with one another and at the same time with the sense of guilt aroused by the incipient Oedipus conflict."

Melanie Klein (1928) 'Early Stages of the Oedipus Complex'. In J. Mitchell (ed) The Selected Melanie Klein. Harmondsworth:Penguin, 1986; p.72

Thursday, 12 June 2008

Viva hate


Isn't it great that the first Charles Schulz comic strip ever published has within it the angry seed for everything this daily-strip would become over the next fifty years. It's really just a big fuck-you to the world (and himself). Tres punk.

I found this of course on page one of The Complete Peanuts 1950-52, a present I got from Richard today (thank you, Rich). I am always struck when I read some of the less-fluffy Schulz by just how dark and dysthymic his vision of human relations was/is. My little pills wouldn't exist without him.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008



Do you see it?

To see what is probably blindingly obvious to everyone except these two, click here.

For more on Therapism click here.

Saturday, 7 June 2008

You're going to miss me when I'm gone

I am very excited at the moment by the new Mozza video: basically him cavorting around his LA garden with his bruised, glowering, National Front eye-candy bovver-boys (aka The Band).

Roland Barthes would have a field day with The Tambourine As Signifier in this video.

Watch how he uses it as a baton, a frame, a peephole, pacemaker, a camera-lens, a hula-hoop, a discus, a bolt of lightening (Zeus!), a flyswatter, a punching bag, a crown, a matador's cape, a ring-master's cane, a shield, a security blanket, an ersatz vagina (notice the fluttering, masturbatory fingerwork), and of course, a, um, tambourine!

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Defence mechanisms


[Click on image to enlarge]

This was inspired by Jacobs' visualisation of how our defence mechanisms interrelate (Jacobs 1988:82)


For further explanations, follow the links below:

regression, idealisation, splitting, turning against the self, introjection, projection, displacement, rationalisation, intellectualisation, isolation, asceticism, reaction formation, undoing, fixation

And here's a handy all-in one list to print up and put on your fridge door.