Write a peer response for question number 3. Quality should be assured, no plagiarism no grammar issues I only need 200 word
QUESTION NUMBER 3
Pick one of the products advertised in the video about the Top Ten Infomercials and think about how its success thrives of, or exploits in some way, contemporary culture’s impoverishment of myth. In other words, what aspects of our human condition is lacking such that we feel we need this “thing” to fill the void, whereas a myth could do a better job! (according to May). What I’m asking you to entertain is: how do these Infomercials function as a cult-like conduit? — that is, channeling our desire for myth into consumer behaviours. This Discussion Forum is worth 20% of your final grade in the course. 10% for your post on the infomercial product of your choosing and how it substitutes for what May would argue myth otherwise would. And 10% for responding one of your fellow peers on their post and any thoughts you have regarding what they posted. Did they think of a connection between a product and myth (or lack thereof) that you didn’t? If so elaborate upon their insight and how it helped you understand May’s existential psychotherapeutic philosophy
Rollo May’s The Cry for Myth https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1373534.The_Cry_for_Myth (Click on “Open Preview” below book cover image to access the reading.)
I WILL EMAIL PEERS POST NEXT WEEK.
This is the post I need to respond
Justin Van Hezewyk
June 29, 2020 9:12 PM
The product I have decided to talk about is one that I have personally seen advertised the most out of all the products in the video, Proactive. I believe that this product caters to lacking human conditions like beauty and anxiety. This product targets people that are easily influenced and self-conscious, mainly teenagers. In our modern society/culture, there seems to be a certain stigma going around that people need to act a certain way or look a certain way, this can relate to having “clear skin”. Through media, Hollywood, and social settings, looks seem to have a big impact on people’s day-to-day lives. The company markets Proactive by using celebrities like actresses, singers, etc. in order to gain attention to their brand. They look to target fans of these celebrities in order to gain sales. They market it in a way that gives this “human factor” to the celebrities in the commercials; showing the audience that these same celebrities that people hold upon this pedestal also have “flaws”. All this company is doing is taking advantage of a common problem that many people have and try to convey that their product is the best because so and so uses it; while a common no-name drug store product would suffice. I guess that the use of this product would give the consumer an easy physical reward; less acne on one’s face. This would fall under the pleasure principle in psychotherapy. Proactive gives the consumer the belief that their product is what they are missing to be “beautiful”. This channels our desire for myth and is spoken about in May’s book, The Cry for Myth.
“Myths are essential to the process of keeping our souls alive and bringing us new meaning in a difficult and often meaningless world. Such aspects of eternity as beauty” (May, 1992).
Ellis, C. (2020 June 29). Week 9: Existential Psychoanalysis Part 1: Rolla May and the Need for Myth. Blackboard. https://bb-gbc.blackboard.com/webapps/blackboard/execute/displayLearningUnit?course_id=_187730_1&content_id=_5053708_1
May, R. (1992). The Cry for Myth. Delta. Retrieved from https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1373534.The_Cry_for_Myth
READINGS FOR QUESTION NUMBER 3
Rollo Reece May, U.S. psychologist and author (born April 21, 1909, Ada, Ohio—died Oct. 22, 1994, Tiburon, Calif.), was known as the father of existential psychotherapy. He was one of the first to abandon Freudian theories of human nature, and in his humanistic approach to therapy, he stressed that anxiety could be harnessed and used as a positive force and that people could use their inner resources in making the choices that guide the direction of their lives.
[From Encyclopaedia Britannica online, 2018]
Before we get started on Existential Psychoanalysis proper, we first need to get a sense of what Psychoanalysis itself is. Please watch the YouTube clip below. It provides a decent introduction to classical theory, which is to say Freudian psychoanalytic theory and practice. Existential Psychoanalysis differs quite substantially from this form of treatment, and we will look at some of these details, starting with May. But first, the clip…
Psychoanalysis is not bunk and over and done with like many claim. It has grown and changed — evolved really — over time to include much more relationally grounded practices and approaches the are used in clinics and treatment centers all around the globe. Freud just got the ball rolling in the modern world.
Now, Rollo May. Freud is a traditional psychoanalyst. May is an Existential psychoanalyst. What does this mean? Well, May ascribes to many of the basic premises of Freud but differs on one major aspect: the role of sexuality in relation to a patient’s psychic pain and suffering. Let’s say, you can’t stand getting out of bed in the morning and you are plagued with self-effacing and doubtful depressing sentiments about the way of the world. Freud may — although more eloquently, that is — hypothesize that your depression is a product of early abandonment of the mother’s breast during early infant feeding, or premature and harsh “potty” training sessions. (I don’t know if Freud would argue either of these specifically, but the point is that for Freud it all comes down to sex and/or sexual relationships.) May on the other hand, might hypothesize that your depression is a result of there being no reason given for you to get out of bed, other than of course that you need to get out of work, make money to pay bills etc etc. But beyond that, that’s it! There is nothing greater, no reason for why I should get out of bed, let alone the fact that I simply do out of force of habit. In short, May might suggest that I am depressed because I have no contextualizing myth in my life!
But wait! I know that myth is proverbial nonesense — B.S. as they say — and that as an enlightened educated person, I know that I do not need myth insofar as I have science and technological rationality to provide all the basis for my modern way of living as I do.
So that question no pops up and we must confront it: Do I need myth in my life? Can I live — like really live live — with out myth? What are the implications of living without myth? How do we bring myth into our life, or what are some of the resources for doing such? These are the questions that we will consider in this module.
WHY IS A MYTH
“Myths are like the beams in a house: not exposed to outside view, they are the structure which holds the house together so people can live in it.”
There is a phenomenon in psychology and philosophy known as Cognitive Dualism. Cognitive Dualism states that the world is interpretable in two ways and that our minds are structured in a way not just that they can understand the world in these two ways, but that they must; which is to say, an understanding of the world (or any question for that matter) that explicitly relies on one explanation is by definition incomplete. What are these two ways? Glad you asked. Typically we think of them as the arts on one hand and the sciences on the other.
Science we understand more or less easily (at least we accept it… more or less). Science is that discourse which allows us to make sense of the world by way of logic and causal explanation. For example, Why does Ball B move? Well, because Ball A moved and hit it, transferring the energy conserved in it onto Ball B, to C, to D, and so on and so on. Another example:
If A, then B
If B, then C
If A, then C
This is called the Transitive Property and it’s very handy in symbolic logic and mathematics. (Please don’t make me explain anything else about it beyond this!) The point is that there are specific correlative steps that directly link certain predicates to other predicates such that, logically, such and such — C, for example — MUST be the case, If given A in a causal system.
Arts, on the other hand, like music, poetry, dance, painting, etc etc. aren’t necessarily bound by these logical and/or causal explanations. Now, not to say that they’re not important, but humans have come to find that the Arts are not that helpful for exploiting the worlds natural resources, oppressing/containing enemies, building Space Forces and so on, and thus they have become functionally secondary to the sciences (there’s more than a modicum of truth to the adage “Starving Arist”!)
Plato, for example, one of the greatest philosophers of Western — if not world — history, is usually chalked up to being a pretty hard-core logical and rational philosopher. (And he is.) But, this interpretation categorically fails to adequately account for Plato’s use of so many literary devices in his dialogues, such as allegory and fable; or, why — very controversially, why he chooses to end his great work The Republic with a myth: The Myth of Er — the story of a soldier who has a near death experience, sees the afterworld (e.g., The Spindle of Necessity and the Three Daughters of Fate, and how the souls choose their lot in the next life, how the wicked are punished, and so on and so on), and then returns to narrate his experience.
Why would Plato do this? Why end a great work of rational logical philosophy with an appeal to myth?
Perhaps Plato is just having fun. Perhaps he’s just flouting his literary flare. Or, he’s doing something more intelligent, which is showing the readers of his work that being able to synthesize both aspects of our experience is essential to living a just and good life. In other words, it might take more than just a natural scientific understanding of our state of affairs in order to help us build toward something greater; maybe that thing is imagination and myth — the arts? That said, the arts often find themselves under constant attack for being useless and inefficient. What are we to do?
DENIAL OF MYTH (IN OUR TIME)
“But what has happened? As a people we are more confused, lacking in moral ideals, dreading the future, uncertain what to do change things or how to rescue our own inner life.”
Read the following excerpt from Rollo May’s book The Cry for Myth found through the following link. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1373534.The_Cry_for_Myth
Quoting Archibald MacLeish, May recites: “We are deluged with facts, but we have lost, or are losing, our human ability to feel them … We know with the head now, by the facts, by the abstractions …”
And the “abstractions” are exactly what existentialism tries to address, as it so happens, life very rarely – okay, never! – happens in direct accord with the abstractions and the theories. Certainly, there are close approximations and uncanny likenesses, but that’s it. Other than that what are we presented with but the murky mess and uncertainty of life-in-process, rife with all its contradictions and paradoxes.
Myth and Language:
In The Cry for Myth May has some specific thoughts on myth and language . What is that relationship? Explain it. Is our popular culture partially to blame for the disconnected relationship May diagnoses? Elaborate.
CULTS OR MYTHS
May says: “People […] flock to psychotherapists or their substitutes, or drugs of cults, to get help in holding themselves together.”
WATCH VIDEO TO CHOOSE ONE OF THE TOP TEN INFORMARCIALS
He goes on to call the reach for these substitutes (namely drugs and cults) a lonely search for internal identity; one that would not be necessary if for a founding and nurturing mythos. He writes: “This ‘lonely search for internal identity’ is a widespread need which gives rise in our society to the development of psychoanalysis and the many forms and promises of psychotherapy and the multitude of cure-alls and cults, constructive or destructive as they may be.”
On the subject of cults, specifically, may writes the following: “Any group which promises bliss and love and an inside track to whatever gods may be can get an audience, and people flock to the banner of a new cult whatever it is called.”
For this week’s Discussion Forum (Week 9), watch the following clip… all of it…
Now, pick one product advertised and think about how its success thrives of, or exploits in some way, contemporary culture’s impoverishment of myth. In other words, what aspects of our human condition is lacking such that we feel we need this “thing” to fill the void, whereas a myth could do a better job! (according to May). What I’m asking you to entertain is: how do these Infomercials function as a cult-like conduit? — that is, channeling our desire for myth into consumer behavious. Your response to this will be uploaded to the Discussion Forum for Week