‘Therapy is indeed the new opium of the people, as Frank Furedi makes clear in this fascinating, readable – and disturbing – book.’ – Virginia Ironside, The. Furedi has written a textbook-style assessment of this new therapy culture. While he lacks the illuminating gifts of sociologists such as. The official website of Frank Furedi, author of Therapy Culture, Paranoid Parenting, Culture of Fear.

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What’s missing is any concession that therapy might be helpful and motivating; that it can enable those with a sense of victimhood to move beyond it; that when it works it makes people nicer and happier, or at any rate less nasty and miserable. This is the first coloring book i have gotten and i love it so so much Therapy Culture makes some pithy sociological therayp.

Therapy Culture explores the powerful influence of therapeutic imperative in Anglo-American societies. By the medicalisation of emotional upheaval, young people are trained to regard troublesome experiences as the source of illness for fureci help needs to be found. Yet, thrash TV, along with its more elevated literary cousin, the new genre of self-revelatory biography, mirrors new cultural norms about notions of intimacy and private space. Integrity in the Emotions David Pugmire No preview available – A recent survey discovered that children as young as eight described themselves as “stressed by relationships and school”.

Integrity in the Emotions: A key theme promoted through confessional television is that in order to heal, emotionally injured individuals need to let go of “private wounds by sharing them with others”. At an individual level, low self-esteem is presented as an invisible disease that undermines the ability of people to control their lives. Indeed some are, and vaginal and anal tears do eventually heal up. Professor Stephen Palmer of City University, who led the study, was “surprised by the extent of the problem”.


The paradox of therapy culture is that the more universal it fredi, the less ambitious it seems. His objection to the cult of the “vulnerable self”, like Margaret Thatcher’s to the welfare state, is that it encourages dependency.

On the face of it, the tendency to inflate the problem of emotional vulnerability and to minimise the ability of the person to cope with distressful episodes runs counter to the therapeutic ideal of the self-determining individual. He was treated as a public outcast until he acknowledged he had a “problem” and checked into a clinic. Thus major social problems are atomistically recast as individual woes.

It is a timely question: In the early s, MPD was a rare diagnosis – less than a dozen cases in the previous years; by the s, thousands of people were diagnosed as multiples. T he erosion of the boundary that separates the public from the private is one of the chief accomplishments of therapy culture. He claims that therapeutic culture is primarily about imposing a new conformity through the management of people’s emotions.

By treating cultyre and feelings as the defining feature furfdi individual identity, the private sphere has become a legitimate area for public scrutiny.

Depression, once primarily associated with women, is now represented as an infirmity that also afflicts children, students and men. In fact, it’s the Furedi world-view – centred on an era of silent fortitude – that seems acquiescent. Following his autobiography, Addicted, which provides vivid details of his drunken debauchery, some wags suggested that he is now more respected for his addiction than he ever was for his football: Professor Furedi suggests that the recent cultural turn toward the realm of the emotions coincides with a radical redefinition of personhood.


Get off that couch

On reality TV the intimate banalities of family life are exposed for public entertainment. In short, therapy has become the opiate of the people. Recent decades have seen fjredi discovery of an unprecedented number of new types of illnesses.

When the family unit was a site of respect rather than suspicion. The passive narrative of the self-promoted today acquires its apogee dulture the celebration of self-esteem.

Extract from Therapy Culture, by Frank Furedi | Books | The Guardian

The self at risk. Therapy is a sedative cynically administered to stifle dissidence and unrest.

He is nostalgic for the stoicism of the Blitz or the Aberfan disaster, when the children who survived went straight back to school, to “take their minds off” it.

If he had talked to the counsellors at his own university, Furedi might have discovered that the problems students bring along are real enough. All this emphasis on the private self has, paradoxically, eroded private life – and emptied the public realm of purpose and meaning.