Buy Hystories: Hysterical Epidemics and Modern Culture Main Market by Elaine Showalter (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low. Showalter re-draws the picture of mental illness with clearer lines and as something which is closer to home than some would care to admit. Elaine Showalter. · Rating details · ratings · 9 reviews. This provocative and illuminating book charts the persistence of a cultural phenomenon. Tales of.

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The media slaps a title on it – Gulf War syndrome. Place Published New York. But overall, this is a very thought-provoking book that I am sure will rankle various believers but otherwise get people thinking critically.

Emma Mc Morrow rated it really liked it Aug 18, What psychologist Roy Schafer calls “retelling a life” is an important part of psychological growth, responsibility, and self-acceptance. Suddenly there are women going to their health professionals across the world with similar symptoms with no clear explanation.

Born Elaine Cottler in BostonMassachusetts, Showalter pursued an academic career against the wishes of her parents. In the s, Showalter began writing for popular magazines, bringing her work further into the public sphere than it ever had been during her academic career. Like the witch-hunts of the s and the hypnotic cures of the s, the hysterical syndromes of the s reflect the fears and anxieties of a culture on the edge of change.

In her essay Feminist Criticism in the WildernessShowalter says, “A cultural theory acknowledges that there are important differences between women as writers: Insightful and sensitive, filled with fascinating new perspectives on a culture saturated with syndromes of every sort, Hystories is a gift of good sense from one of our best critics. Miranda rated it really liked it Nov 07, In a predominantly poststructuralist era that proposes that meaning is contextual and historical, and that identity is socially and linguistically constructed, Moi claimed that there is no fundamental female self.

Shows all the dangers of taking your brilliance and status for granted and failing to do the proper research. Paperbackpages. In Toward a Feminist Poetics Showalter traces the history of women’s literature, suggesting that it can be divided into three phases:. Showalter says “Hysteria is part of everyday life. Additionally, women aren’t the only people who suffer from what are considered “hysterical” symptoms; though when a man suffers from similar symptoms, the cause and treatment are defined differently.

It not only survives in the s, but it is more contagious than in the past. Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations. Showalter’s book Inventing Herselfa survey of feminist icons, was the culmination of a lengthy interest in communicating the importance of understanding feminist tradition.


Elaine Showalter

Showalter does not advocate replacing psychoanalysisfor example, with cultural anthropology ; rather, she suggests that approaching women’s writing from a cultural perspective is one among many valid perspectives that elaone uncover female traditions. Probably the best description Showalter gives of gynocritics is in Toward a Feminist Poetics:.

Teaching Literature was widely and positively reviewed, especially in the American journal Pedagogywhich gave it three review-essays and called it “the book we wish we had in our backpacks when we started teaching.

Epidemics of hysteria seem to peak at the ends of centuries, when people are already alarmed about social change.

Elaine Showalter – Wikipedia

Dec 26, Vera rated it really liked it. Newspapers, magazines, talk shows, self-help books, and of course the Internet hsytories that ideas, once planted, manifest themselves internationally as symptoms” Plett.

She feels that as times change, the popular hysteria of the times will change along with it. Retrieved August 30, Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page.

For example, she notes how alien abductions start to become more international into the late 20th century, but that the details take on local color; so while aliens appear to American abductees as smarmy “men in black” invaders, Showalter writes that in contrast: Steven rated it it was amazing Dec 03, December Learn how and when to remove this template message. The structure of the book that links by theme, rather than era, helps to make these links concrete in the readers’ minds.

Jan 14, Jennifer rated it liked it Shelves: Showalter covers the contributions of predominately intellectuals like Mary Wollstonecraft, Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Camille Paglia.

Open Preview See a Problem? Alane rated it liked it Sep 15, Claiming a Feminist Intellectual Heritage The subject is mass hysteria, or rather the different narratives of social phenomena of hysterical origin, such as Gulf War syndrome, fatigue syndrome, Satanic-ritual-abuse and alien-abduction subcultures and the rest of the sorry farrago of conspiracy-theorist nonsense that passes for culture in America nowadays.

No trivia or quizzes yet. From Mary Wollstonecraft to Naomi Wolffeminism has often taken a hard line on fashion, shopping, and the whole beauty Monty I picked the book up again this time because I was thinking about contemporary anti-vaxxers and how their pa I vaguely remember skimming through this book back when it first came out in the 90s and I was researching for a presentation on the relationship of Sunday night viewing habits of Americans who alternatively watched X-Files and Touched By an Angel basically, my premise was around the t.


A doctor of other authority figure must first define, name, and publicize the disorder and then attract patients into its community. Learn how and when to remove these template messages. He is paternal, watchful, smiling, affectionate, youthful, all-knowing, and wears a form-fitting uniform.

Skillfully surveying the condition of hysteria–its causes, cures, famous patients, and doctors–in the twentieth century, Showalter also looks at literature, drama, and feminist representations of the hysterical. The 80s and 90s brought into the media a different sort of woman – the ambitious, the hardworking, the Supermom.

Sarah rated it really liked it May 26, At age 21, Showalter was disowned by her parents for marrying outside the Jewish faith. Given that it’s twenty years old, Elaine Showalter’s book seems outdated now–things like Gulf War Syndrome and alien abductions don’t seem to get as much play in the media as they used to, but now we have rumors such as vaccines causing autism a far more dangerous ‘hystory,’ in my opinion, and one which I’m not sure Showalter’s Freudian psychoanalytical approach could explain.

In separate chapters she examines each of these entities–how it presents, how it fits into her theory of mass hysteria as a cultural response to the millennium, and how it is being handled by health care professionals. Hysterical Epidemics and Modern Media has angered some in the health profession and many who suffer from these illnesses.

Nineteenth-century French doctors organized their case studies of hysterical women according to the conventions of the French novel, especially in its seduction scenes, and writers based their portraits of seductive or unhappy women on medical textbooks. The second section is slight and I really feel needs to have a chapter on popular media depictions of what Showalter has developed in terms of “mass hystories” both as a bridge to the third section but also to support the subtitle of the book, “hysterical epidemics and modern media” — where is the modern media in this book?

She is well known and respected in both academic and popular cultural fields.