Tag: Reading

Psychoanalyzing Scrooge

Marley's_Ghost

What exactly trigger’s Ebenezer Scrooge’s big transformation in A Christmas Carol? I always thought Scrooge’s change of heart came about when the spirit of Christmas-yet-to-come pointed a boney finger to Ebenezer’s grave. I may have been influenced in that respect by the Mr. Magoo version.

Re-reading A Christmas Carol this year I noticed that the spirits themselves have little to do with Uncle Ebenezer’s big 180. Scrooge generally scoffs at the spirits, suggesting that Marley’s ghost is a bad dream induced by heartburn, an “undigested bit beef, a blot of mustard.”  The transformation actually starts when Scrooge rediscovers his inner child and sets him free.

If this sounds a little like psychoanalysis, you wouldn’t be the first to make the comparison. Dickens takes his character on journey back to re-experience some of the trauma of his childhood, a process that turns out to be surprisingly similar to intensive short-term therapy. The relationship between memory and personal transformation is a concept straight out of Alfred Adler.

So how would you diagnose Ebenezer Scrooge? Psychology student Kathleen Eveland thinks Scrooge is possibly bipolar exhibiting symptoms of stress-induced psychosis.

 

Book Recommendations: 20 Strange Books You Might Like to Read. Or Not.

runningafterantelope

 

There’s nothing like a book to take you into different worlds, experience different lives and in the doing learn something about yourself. Here’s a list of offbeat books by some very worthwhile authors, including one who lives to chase animals:

The wildly various stories in Running After Antelope are connected and illuminated by a singular passion: the author’s attempt to run down a pronghorn antelope. His pursuit-odd, funny, and inspired-is juxtaposed with stories about sibling rivalry, falling in love, and working as a journalist in war-torn countries. Scott Carrier provides a most unique record of a most unique life.

20 Even Stranger and More Wonderful Books via Metafilter