Thursday, January 21, 2010

Mental Illness: Part II

Why does it hurt so when the ish hits the mental fan? I came across this quote researching the second in the series of posts on loving someone dealing with mental illness..

“Mental illness is feared and has such a stigma because it represents a reversal of what Western humans . . . have come to value as the essence of human nature.

...Because our culture so highly values . . . an illusion of self-control and control of circumstance, we become abject when contemplating mentation that seems more changeable, less restrained and less controllable, more open to outside influence, than we imagine our own to be.”

-From "The Americanization of Mental Illness" published on Jan. 8, 2010


  1. I saw Santa Claus in the Rorschach. Seriously, that's a thought-provoking concept that mental illness is a western manifestation. Same with guilt, sin, and dieting?

    Also, is the "ish" just a substitution word for "shit"? I was listening to Sisqo's "Thong Song" (don't ask why) the other day, and Heather and I couldn't figure out what "ish" was...

  2. Yes, ish is as you say, and the Thong Song was the dope ish back in the day.

    I don't think mental illness was born in the West, but I do think people suffer greater isolation from mental illness here, because the culture that made up Manifest Destiny finds it nearly impossible to accept our own fragility.

    And now I can see the Santa Claus, too.



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