Time, history and the Holocaust

I’ve just been reading Lawrence Langer’s essay Memory’s Time: Chronology and Duration in Holocaust Testimonies  in which he makes a distinction between chronological and durational time.1  Chronological time presumes a ‘before, during and after’, whereas in durational time there is only now, and therefore there can be no sense of …

The Real of everyday life

It’s often tempting to think of the Real as something mysterious and esoteric; something that is transcendental or even, in some way, supernatural or occult.  However, I think this is to completely misrecognise the Real.  Or rather, although it’s actually very easy to misrecognise the Real, this is not because …

The Real at the heart of society

Most social theorists nowadays stress the discursive nature of society.  In other words, they point out that society is not simply a collection of individuals, i.e.  group psychology writ large, but rather is structured by a network of signifiers and signifieds.   This has often been interpreted by Marxist critics as …

Trauma and therapy

As I’ve suggested in a number of posts related to trauma, the aim of therapy in these cases is to help the subject make sense of their traumatic experiences, usually by some form of cognitive or symbolic processing.  So, for example, with cases of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) the individual’s …