“Nous choisissons cette place pour remarquer que, s’il y a toute chance pour que cette édition, qui s’annonce elle-même comme « définitive », soit menée à bonne fin, il n’y a pas encore en français d’édition des oeuvres complètes de Kant, non plus que de Freud. Il est vrai qu’il eût fallu que fût poursuivie une traduction systématique de ces oeuvres. Une telle entreprise eût semblé s’imposer pour Kant dans un pays où tant de jeunes forces se qualifient par l’enseignement de la philosophie. Sa carence à beaucoup près laisse à réfléchir sur la direction assurée aux travaux par les cadres responsables.”
“Ici SADE est le pas inaugural d’une subversion, dont, si piquant que cela semble au regard de la froideur de l’homme, KANT est le point tournant, et jamais repéré [diagnosticado, reconhecido] – que nous sachions – comme tel.
La Philosophie dans le boudoirvient 8 ans après la Critique de la raison pratique.”
Todo diabo é fundado por um beato.
“La recherche du bien serait donc une impasse, s’il ne renaissait, das Gute, le bien qui est l’objet de la loi morale. Il nous est indiqué par l’expérience que nous faisons d’entendre au-dedans de nous des commandements, dont l’impératif se présente comme catégorique, autrement dit inconditionnel.”
padecer o pai descer
“Retenons le paradoxe que ce soit au moment où ce sujet n’a plus en face de lui aucun objet, qu’il rencontre une loi, laquelle n’a d’autre phénomène que quelque chose de signifiant déjà, qu’on obtient d’une voix dans la conscience, et qui, à s’y articuler en maxime, y propose l’ordre d’une raison purement pratique ou volonté.”
« J’ai le droit de jouir de ton corps, peut me dire quiconque, et ce droit je l’exercerai sans qu’aucune limite m’arrête dans le caprice des exactions que j’aie le goût d’y assouvir »
“entre deux l’impudeur de l’un à elle seule faisant le viol de la pudeur de l’autre.”
“Tels phénomènes de la voix, nommément ceux de la psychose, ont bien cet aspect de l’objet. Et la psychanalyse n’était pas loin en son aurore d’y référer la voix de la conscience.”
“Assurément le christianisme a éduqué les hommes à être peu regardants du côté de la jouissance de Dieu, et c’est en quoi KANT fait passer son volontarisme de la Loi pour la Loi, lequel en remet, peut-on dire, sur l’ataraxie de l’expérience stoïcienne.”
“Quand la jouissance s’y pétrifie, il devient le fétiche noir, où se reconnaît la forme bel et bien offerte en tel temps et lieu, et de nos jours encore, pour qu’on y adore la Présence de Dieu.”
“Le désir, qui est le suppôt de cette refente du sujet, s’accommoderait sans doute de se dire volonté de jouissance. Mais cette appellation ne le rendrait pas plus digne de la volonté qu’il invoque chez l’Autre en la tentant jusqu’à l’extrême de sa division d’avec son pathos, car pour ce faire, il part battu, promis à l’impuissance. Puisqu’il part soumis au plaisir, dont c’est la loi de le faire tourner en sa visée toujours trop court. Homéostase toujours trop vite retrouvée du vivant au seuil le plus bas de la tension dont il vivote.”
“L’expérience physiologique démontre que la douleur est d’un cycle plus long à tous égards que le plaisir, puisqu’une stimulation la provoque au point où le plaisir finit. Si prolongée qu’on la suppose, elle a pourtant comme le plaisir son terme: dans l’évanouissement du sujet.”
“Une structure quadripartite est depuis l’inconscient toujours exigible dans la construction d’une ordonnance subjective. Ce à quoi satisfont nos schémas didactiques.”
“la peu croyable survie dont SADE dote les victimes des sévices et tribulations qu’il leur inflige en sa fable.”
“Unique (Justine) ou multiple, la victime a la monotonie de la relation du sujet au signifiant”
“L’exigence dans la figure des victimes d’une beauté toujours classée incomparable (et d’ailleurs inaltérable, cf. plus haut) est une autre affaire, dont on ne saurait s’acquitter avec quelques postulats banaux, bientôt controuvés, sur l’attrait sexuel. On y verra plutôt la grimace de ce que nous avons démontré dans la tragédie, de la fonction de la beauté: barrière extrême à interdire l’accès à une horreur fondamentale.”
“On le voit bien au paradoxe que constitue dans SADE sa position à l’endroit de l’enfer. “L’idée de l’enfer, cent fois réfutée par lui et maudite comme moyen de sujétion de la tyrannie religieuse, revient curieusement motiver les gestes d’un de ses héros, pourtant des plus férus de la subversion libertine dans sa forme raisonnante, nommément le hideux SAINT-FOND. Les pratiques, dont il impose à ses victimes le supplice dernier, se fondent sur la croyance qu’il peut en rendre pour elles dans l’au-delà le tourment éternel.
Cette incohérence dans SADE, négligée par les sadistes, un peu hagiographes eux aussi, s’éclairerait à relever sous sa plume le terme formellement exprimé de la seconde mort. Dont l’assurance qu’il en attend contre l’affreuse routine de la nature (celle qu’à l’entendre ailleurs, le crime a la fonction de rompre) exigerait qu’elle allât à une extrémité où se redouble l’évanouissement du sujet: avec lequel il symbolise dans le voeu que les éléments décomposés de notre corps, pour ne pas s’assembler à nouveau, soient eux-mêmes anéantis.”
pulsão de quase nada
“Ni recueilli un de ces rêves dont le rêveur reste bouleversé, d’avoir dans la condition ressentie d’une renaissance intarissable, été au fond de la douleur d’exister?”
“…la relation de réversion qui unirait le sadisme à un masochisme dont on imagine mal au dehors le pêle-mêle qu’elle supporte. Mieux vaut d’y trouver le prix d’une historiette, fameuse, sur l’exploitation de l’homme par l’homme: définition du capitalisme on le sait.
Et le socialisme alors? C’est le contraire…”
“L’objet, nous l’avons montré dans l’expérience freudienne, l’objet du désir là où il se propose nu, n’est que la scorie d’un fantasme où le sujet ne revient pas de sa syncope. C’est un cas de nécrophilie.”
“le moraliste nous paraît toujours plus impudent encore qu’imprudent.”
“Il n’y a de fourgon que de la police, laquelle peut bien être l’État comme on le dit du côté de HEGEL, mais la loi est autre chose comme on le sait depuis ANTIGONE.”
“Treize ans de Charenton pour SADE en sont en effet de ce pas – mais ce n’était pas sa place – tout est là. C’est cela même qui l’y mène. Car pour sa place, tout ce qui pense est d’accord là-dessus, elle [sa <folie>] était ailleurs. Mais voilà: ceux qui pensent bien, pensent qu’elle était dehors, et les bien-pensants, depuis ROYER-COLLARD qui le réclama à l’époque, le voudraient au bagne, voire sur l’échafaud.”
“Si le bonheur est agrément sans rupture du sujet à sa vie, comme le définit très classiquement la Critique, il est clair qu’il se refuse à qui ne renonce pas à la voie du désir. Ce renoncement peut être voulu, mais au prix de la vérité de l’homme, ce qui est assez clair par la réprobation qu’ont encourue devant l’idéal commun les épicuriens, voire les stoïciens. Leur ataraxie destitue leur sagesse.”
“Que le bonheur soit devenu un facteur de la politique est une proposition impropre. Il l’a toujours été et ramènera le sceptre et l’encensoir qui s’en accommodent fort bien.”
“La tête de SAINT-JUST, fût-elle restée habitée des fantasmes d’Organt, il eût peut-être fait de Thermidor son triomphe.”
“Nous voilà enfin en demeure d’interroger le « Sade, mon prochain », dont nous devons l’invocation à l’extrême perspicacité de Pierre KLOSSOWSKI. Disons que c’est la seule contribution de notre temps à la question sadienne qui ne nous paraisse pas entachée des tics du « bel esprit ».”
“Nous croyons que SADE n’est pas assez voisin de sa propre méchanceté, pour y rencontrer son prochain. Trait qu’il partage avec beaucoup et avec FREUD notamment.” Homo tempranus
“Chez SADE, nous en voyons le test, à nos yeux crucial, dans son refus de la peine de mort, dont l’histoire suffirait à prouver – sinon la logique – qu’elle est un des corrélats de la Charité.”
“This is not the first time my writing has been informed by my dreaming self. By now I am wise enough to trust such experiences even before I can make sense of them.”
“Acceptance and praise foster a feeling of well-being in the child. They encourage confidence, spontaneity, hope, and a sense of being worthwhile. Punishment and threat induce guilt feelings, moralistic self-restriction, and pressure to atone. Guilt is the anxiety that accompanies transgressions, carrying with it the feeling of having done bad things and the fear of the parents’ angry retaliation. In the interests of self-protection, the child learns to deal with this anticipated punishment preemptively by turning it into an internalized threat against himself. § Disapproval and contempt make a child feel ashamed of not being a worthwhile person. The implied danger of abandonment may make him shy, avoidant, and ever anxious about making mistakes, appearing foolish, and being open to further ridicule.”“Aceitação e elogios alimentam na criança uma sensação de bem-estar e conforto. Encorajam a confiança, espontaneidade, esperança, um senso de capacidade e de cumprir o seu papel. Punição e ameaças induzem sentimentos de culpa, auto-restrições morais, pressão corretiva. A culpa é a ansiedade que acompanha transgressões, carregando consigo o sentimento de ter feito coisas ruins e o medo da retaliação furiosa dos pais.Com a auto-preservação em vista, a criança aprende a lidar com esse castigo iminente de modo preventivo, internalizando a ameaça contra si mesma.§ Desaprovação e desdém fazem a criança se sentir envergonhada por não ser uma pessoa valorosa. O perigo implicado no sentir-se abandonado é o desenvolvimento de uma personalidade tímida, esquiva, evitativa, constantemente ansiosa ou apreensiva quanto ao cometimento de erros, com medo de acabar parecendo um tolo ou de estar vulnerável ao ridículo dos outros.”
A ANTIGA SÍNDROME DE RENAN: Medo de ser expulso de casa. Medo de dar muitas despesas. Medo de ser um mero mortal.
“<Look how foolish you are, how clumsy, how stupid! What will other people think of you when they see that you can’t seem to do anything right? You should be ashamed of yourself acting like that. If only you really cared, if only you wanted to act right, if only you would try harder, then you could be the kind of child we want you to be.> Repeated exposure to such abuse calls forth an inner echo of self-contempt. § Eventually the child learns to say of himself, <What an idiot I am, what a fool, what an awful person! I never do anything right. I have no self-control. I just don’t try hard enough. If I did, surely they would be satisfied.>” “<Olha quão tolo você é, desajeitado, estúpido! O que vão pensar de você, se você não consegue fazer nada direito? Você devia sentir vergonha de si mesmo agindo desse jeito. Se apenas você se importasse, se você só quisesse agir adequadamente, se você apenas tentasse mais, aí então você seria o tipo de criança que queríamos que você fosse.> A exposição repetida a tal tipo de discurso leva a uma internalização dum eco de auto-desprezo; uma voz interna passa a repetir as mesmas coisas antes faladas pelos seus superiores. § Eventualmente, chega-se ao ponto em que a própria criança dirá, diante de cada nova decepção: <Que idiota que eu sou, que imbecil, que péssima pessoa! Nunca faço nada certo. Não tenho sequer auto-controle. E eu nunca tento o bastante. Se eu tentasse, com certeza satisfaria a vontade dos outros.>”
“My own mother often told me: <I love you, but I don’t like you.> It was clear that this meant that she loved me because she was a good mother, but that she did not like me because I was an unsatisfactory child.”
“The experience of being seen as momentarily not yet able to cope is a natural part of growth. It is also natural to experience the embarrassment that accompanies making mistakes, stumbling, blundering, or fucking-up.”
“Some parents are too hard on their children because of their own personal problems, others because of harsh cultural standards. Some cultures make excessive demands for precocious maturing of the child. In such settings, shaming inculcates the feeling that other people will not like the child unless he lives up to their expectations. § When shaming arises out of the pathology of neurotic parents, the child may be expected to take care of the parents. Such a child may never learn that the natural order of things is quite the reverse. He is discouraged from ever realizing that it is the parents who are supposed to take care of the child. § Even more insidious is the impact of the parent who unconsciously needs to have an unsatisfactory child. Such a parent will never be satisfied, no matter how hard the child tries, no matter how much he accomplishes. Anything less than perfection is unacceptable. If the child gets a grade of 95 on an examination, he will be asked why he didn’t get 100. If he gets 100, he will be asked what took him so long to get a satisfactory grade. Told that he should have been getting 100 all along, he may become afraid to do well lest perfect grades be demanded of him all the time from then on. If he happens to be a chronic straight-A student, then he may be asked, <If you’re so damn smart, how come you can’t keep your room clean?>” “This can lead to his spending a lifetime vainly seeking the approval of others in the hope that he may someday be validated at last. § My own parents shamed me needlessly and often. They made it clear that it was my clumsiness, my inadequacies, and my failures that made them unhappy. Even my successes and accomplishments were made to reveal how inferior and insufficient I was.”
“<Enough,> she stilled me. <A boy doesn’t interrupt when a father is talking, a father who sweats in the city all week long for him.>”
“Those who have been shamed can some day learn to overcome feeling unworthy. Embarrassment, in contrast, is a natural reaction that is inevitable in certain social situations.”
“quavering speech [fala tremida] or breaking of the voice, sweating, blanching [empalidecimento], blinking, tremor of the hand, hesitating or vacillating movement, absent-mindedness” Goffman, Interaction Ritual: Essays on Face-to-Face Behavior, 1967
“The medical term for less-than-normal breathing capacity, for instance, is respiratory embarrassment.”
“Some unexpected physical clumsiness, breach of etiquette, or interpersonal insensitivity may leave a person open to criticism for being more crude or coarse than he claims to be. But this is an issue of manners, not of morals. It may make for a temporary change of social status, but never carries with it the self-threatening sanctions of shame, with its implications of abandonment, loss of love, and ultimate emotional starvation.”
“For a moment all bets are off. Trust of myself and others is in jeopardy. All values are once again in question. First there is the question of trust in myself. Am I an adequate human being or a fool? What can I expect of myself? Do I really know what I am doing?”“It is a time for the exotic flowering of my paranoia. At such times I may mistakenly expect contempt and ridicule from loving friends and neutral strangers. It is just as though they would turn from me in disgust as my parents did when I did not meet their impossible standards.”
Where is my floor?
Please open that door
Shut those windows
Cracked room and mind
of a sweet-salty boy
Sing along and refrain
“There seems to be no way for any of us to get through the day without making a careless error, doing something foolish, committing a gaffe or faux pas.” Gof., op. cit.
“After hitting the lamppost I sat on the curb and cried as little as possible. I was really worried. Now it was time to go home and face my mother. Instead of seeing this mishap as an unfortunate accident around which I could feel sorry for myself and expect some sympathy, I knew that I had let my parents down again. I headed home and climbed the stairs to our apartment, skates over my shoulder.”
“Still, echoes of this grotesque situation can be heard at times from out of my unsettled and unworthy depths. I remember just a couple of years ago when I learned that I had to undergo a second bout of neurosurgery.”
“At such times my mother’s explicit instructions were: <Don’t fight, but never, never deny that you are a Jew.> She seemed to want me to be well-behaved, but did little to help me to avoid occasions of sin.”
“One afternoon after school Charlie started beating on me in front of a girl I had a crush on. For the first time in my unhappy marriage to Charlie Hooko, my own fear of being seen as a shamefully brutal, lower-class street fighter was overcome. The fear of being humiliated in the eyes of this girl was even more shameful. And so in the midst of the fight I punched Charlie right in the mouth. He couldn’t believe it. I could hardly believe it myself. § Charlie stopped the play at once. He took me down to the park and we both washed our faces at the fountain. Charlie announced to everyone around that I was a tough guy, that he admired me, and that we would be friends from then on. That ended months of regularly scheduled defeat.”
Punch like a girlish girl
Yea, just feel the flow
“As an early teenager I did eventually graduate to becoming a marginal member of a fighting street gang. I pretended that I was a better and more enthusiastic fighter than I ever really was.”
“As my children grew, being creatures of their age they moved toward the freak culture. Part of this involved their being the first kids in our neighborhood to let their hair grow long. So it was that another macho incident came about. One of our neighbors, strong both of will and of muscle, flew the Confederate flag.”
“What proof did he have, I demanded? His only answer was that my kids had long hair. He believed vandalism occurred only in the ghetto. Ghetto kids had long hair and they broke windows, he insisted. My kids had long hair. And so he concluded that it must have been one of them who had broken his window.”
“Ironically, the blunderer often unwittingly reveals the discomfort of his predicament by the very means by which he tries to hide it: <the fixed smile, the nervous hollow laugh, the busy hands, the downward glance that conceals the expression of the eyes.>” “Ironicamente, o atabalhoado freqüente e inadvertidamente expõe seu desconforto situacional pela própria tática utilizada para disfarçá-lo: <o sorriso fixo, a risada nervosa despropositada, as mãos hiper-ativas, a vista caída que esconde a expressão dos olhos.>”
“Essa necessidade social salutar de ocultar-se o embaraço é enfatizada nas pessoas que foram excessivamente submetidas a vexames na infância. Potencialmente, o indivíduo virá a desenvolver um estilo de conduta de tipo neurótico, agindo timidamente a maior parte do tempo e preferindo evitar que outros venham a percebê-lo ou a conhecê-lo.”
“Tendo tantas dificuldades de interação, não é raro que a pessoa acredite que sua abertura para o constrangimento e a vivência de situações ridículas [pois socialmente é impossível fugir de tais ocasiões] é realmente singular. Ela pode desenvolver a crença que outras pessoas não têm a mesma tendência de <se passarem por tolas> de tempos em tempos, como ela tem.”
“Sua própria conscienciosidade de seu problema age como um efeito bola de neve: a apreensão pela sua hiper-sensibilidade eleva seu senso de isolamento, peculiaridade, solidão, enfim. Que trágico que a pessoa deva sempre sentir-se como um desajustado! Basicamente, não diferimos uns dos outros. Ninguém é capaz de lidar o tempo todo com as demandas sociais, sempre excessivas. Mas é que o comportamento tímido-neurótico é sempre desproporcional, alimentando a convicção íntima de que <há algo muito errado consigo>.”
“As maneiras reservadas do introvertido <clássico> (não-mórbido) são parte, provavelmente, de sua orientação psicológica inata; e ele estará sempre mais inclinado ao mundo interior das experiências privadas, que lhe é bem mais confortável. Certo nível de acanhamento da personalidade é mesmo, senão natural, incentivado socialmente. Algumas pessoas (como o próprio que escreve) escondem sua timidez crônica debaixo de um véu de arrogância simulada.”
“When he does try to express himself, he is likely to be hesitant, needlessly soft-spoken, ingratiating, and apologetic. Whenever possible, he simply will try to avoid contact with other people.”
“A person who is not neurotically shy understands that it is the external situation that contributes to embarrassment, rather than some defect in his own character. Unlike the shy neurotic, he has come to learn that these anxieties are triggered by his reaction to particular people and situations.”“Uma pessoa que não é neuroticamente tímida compreende que é o contexto exterior que contribui para seu embaraço, em vez de qualquer defeito de seu próprio caráter. Ao contrário do tímido neurótico, aquela pessoa aprendeu a ver que essas angústias são acionadas pela sua reação a pessoas e eventos particulares.”
“The shy neurotic cannot get anywhere in overcoming his excessive shyness without first revealing to himself that what he truly fears most is not rejection but acceptance, not failure but success. He begins to go after what he wants out of life.”“O tímido neurótico não chegará a lugar algum, enquanto tenta superar ou minorar sua timidez, caso não admita para si mesmo que o que ele realmente mais teme NÃO é a rejeição mas a aceitação, NÃO é o fracasso, e sim o próprio sucesso! É aí que ele começa a alcançar seus verdadeiros objetivos de vida.”
we’re all looped, leaked, sinking, seeking and not finding, just overwhelmed by our own hopes’ weights… what if…
a head dive in a pool of danger
“Feeling undeserving of such unfamiliar achievement and acceptance, he has unwittingly learned to discredit these pleasureable experiences. A poignant early expression of this self-defeating attitude occurs during the first phase of psychotherapy.”
“Anything that makes him feel worthwhile calls forth the echo of his mother’s voice, demanding that he question his presumption. It is as though he can almost hear her demanding, <Just who do you think you are?> Believing even for a moment that he is satisfactory as a human being evokes the underlying shameful feeling that he has presumed too much.”“Qualquer coisa que o faça sentir-se valorizado evoca o eco da voz de sua mãe, mandando que baixe a bola. É como se realmente pudesse ouvir, <Vem cá, quem você pensa que é?>. Acreditar por um só momento que ele é um ser humano completamente satisfatório é o suficiente para ter sua paz de espírito quebrada por pensamentos de culpa de que ele agiu presunçosamente.”
O supremo oposto do vaidoso dos vaidosos – e o que isso trouxe? Mais ódio dos ‘cristãos’ sobre sua cabecinha…
“So it is that each moment of decision is followed by a moment of revision. A minute later, he has reversed his thrust forward, retiring once more into his customary shyness.”
“His life is not what he meant it to be at all. It’s just not it at all.”
Evitar a confrontação é como comprar à prestação!
“Guy de Maupassant’s short story, The Diamond Necklace, is a classic example of the high price of false pride. It is the story of Matilda, a woman tortured and angered by having to live a shamefully ordinary life because she does not possess the luxuries and delicacies which she insists befit her station.”
“It was my parents who started me off down my own painful path of shame and false pride. My parents are no longer responsible for this trip that I sometimes continue to make. Now the enemy is within. It is only my own overblown ego that shames me. It is only I, still sometimes arrogantly insisting on having higher standards for myself than I would impose on others. How much easier to accept the flaws in others than in myself. To the extent that I cling to being special in this way, I remain stuck with the tediously painful life of the perfectionistic striver. I must get everything right, all the time, or suffer shame. It is far too heavy a price to pay for maintaining the illusion that I might be able to rise above human frailty.”
“I give up being satisfied with myself as a pretty decent, usually competent sort of guy who, like everyone else, sometimes makes mistakes, fucks up, and plays the fool. Instead I insist that if only I tried harder, really cared, truly wanted to, I could become that wonderful person who could make my long-dead parents happy. Then they would approve of me. I would be the best. Everyone would love me.”
“Guilt and shame originate from different kinds of faulty parenting. Guilt arises out of a certain kind of bad fathering, shame out of bad mothering.¹ Either parent may elicit one or the other depending on the particular parent’s role and attitude rather than on his or her gender alone.
Excessive authoritarian fathering creates guilty anticipation of punishment for transgression against the lawful order of things.Overly demanding mothering breeds shame.”
¹ Kleiniano demais…
“Paradoxically, too much shaming often produces defiance rather than propriety. No longer able to bear the overwhelming burden of shame, a child may develop a secret determination to misbehave. He comes to wear a mask of spite and shamelessness.”
“We were studying Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. At the beginning of one week, the English teacher announced that we were to memorize Marc Antony’s eulogy. I protested loudly. Memorizing materials that needlessly cluttered up my head was both a waste of my time and an intrusive violation of my mind. No arbitrary school system had any right to do that to me.”
“<Ma, how come you always talk funny when you come to see a teacher?> This was one of my rare opportunities to shame her”
“Straight people were simply not prepared for coping with those of us who shamelessly stepped outside of the system, acted with contempt for the rules, and covertly shamed them for the arbitrariness of their principles.”
“At times my shameless behavior has gotten me into trouble. But so long as it sometimes gets results like that, who am I not to be tempted to continue to be outrageous?”
“More privately, I had developed the false pride of perfectionism to hide my shame and worthlessness from my own eyes. I had to avoid risking further failures and more mistakes. I had to be able to change my image so that I might escape without looking like I was running away or hiding out.”
NOSSAS TORRES DE MARFIM
“No longer would I be the fumbling incompetent who was too timid to go to parties because he never knew how to go about making friends. Instead I became a <heavy> intellectual. With such profoundly developed sensitivity, I could no longer be expected to be bothered devoting my precious energies to the pursuit of the mundane social goals that somehow seemed to excite almost everyone else I knew.
Even armoring as exquisite as this was not enough.Somewhere inside I knew I was just too damn lonely. I still needed to be needed. Acting obsequious, or even <being nice>, was an unthinkable solution. Instead I began to advertise myself as ever ready to rush into the gap whenever a task presented itself that ordinary folk found too unrewarding to mess with.”
“For the first few years of my career as a therapist I worked in impossibly archaic monolithic custodial institutions such as state mental hospitals and prisons. Though allegedly established and maintained as society’s attempt to care for and rehabilitate its social deviates, these institutions turned out to be punitive warehouses for those undesirables about whom the rest of us wished to forget. I cast myself as the champion of the oppressed.¹ Doggedly and unsuccessfully I fought the administrative powers, hoping to attain decent care, effective treatment, and eventual release for the inmates.”
¹ Incrivelmente similar a minha loucura de querer me tornar professor!
“Now I had a new problem. There were no bad parents to fight. How was I to define my role in this more benevolent situation?”
“I do not usually shake hands with a new patient unless the patient gives some indication that this is part of where he starts out in social relationships, in which case I respond.”
“His opening lines were: How long have you been a therapist? Don’t you know that phobic patients can’t stand to be touched? You insist on shaking hands with me knowing that I am too compliant to refuse. It could only make me anxious. The demands you make on me!”
“Should he awaken during the night and need to go to the bathroom to urinate, he must simply suffer through the hours until dawn. He was not able to risk disturbing his dog by getting out of bed. His feeling of friendship with the dog was substantiated by his bringing him along to the treatment sessions.”
“There he asked to be deported to Russia for asylum. Surely he would get better treatment under Communism than he had from the barbaric democratic psychiatric services in America’s capital.” “I described my own experience, and I pointed out that the patient was crazy. He had made me crazy. I warned this man that he would make him crazy, too, unless we all understood that just because the patient claimed that something difficult needed to be done did not mean that we had to do it. The patient was all heat and no light. We were vulnerable to his unrealistic outcries because of our own needs to meet every challenge heroically, no matter how nutty it might be. If we thought it over for a minute, we would realize that there wasn’t much in the way of disastrous consequence in this for anyone but the patient himself. That was unfortunate for him, but that was the way it had to be. Happily, the perspective I offered was sufficient to relieve the Congressional Counsel of his own anxiety.”
“The patient was an attractive woman in her early twenties whose birth defects included having no feet and only rudimentary hands. She managed to get about with a combination of prosthetic devices and monumental denial.” “Focusing on her frustrated wishes to become a star in the public eye allowed her to avoid her anxiety and despair about the oppressive difficulties that she encountered in everyday living. My own parallel defensiveness led me to join her, supporting her crazy longings with my own denial of shame-filled helplessness. She made her own contribution by avoiding my tentative therapeutic interventions. There was just no way she could hear my timid suggestions that this whole show business preoccupation was an avoidance of dealing with the day-to-day quality of her life.”
“Unattended snot ran out of her nostrils and down her face (her measure of how much messiness I could tolerate?). I listened and sympathized as if my mere presence would heal her.” “For some reason, which I still do not understand, after about a year of this circus she let me in on her <secret>. All during this time she had been seeing me on Thursday afternoons, and now she confessed that she had also been in therapy on Monday mornings at another clinic with another crazy therapist.”
“This new challenge’s chart described her as a borderline psychotic, a part-time alcoholic, an unhappy, aggressive woman with preoccupying sexual hangups and several previous unsatisfying bouts of psychotherapy. When I went out to the waiting room to invite her in for our first therapy session she struck me as a slight, timid waif of a woman. She looked more like an emaciated 12-year-old than a life-hardened 32-year-old.”
“Oh, now I get it, the old color symbolism test. A male therapist with a red shirt, and now I’m supposed to tell you that I’m sometimes gay, and you probably are, too!” “You’re the therapist I’ve been looking for all of my life. I’m never, never going to leave you. I know that you’ll be able to accept whatever I do without ever making me feel bad or throwing me out.” “My relief and sense of well-being was immediately transformed. I got the sinking feeling that I had just made a lifetime contract with an albatross.”
“By then I was off balance, but I knew the direction in which I must go. I told her that alcoholic beverages were not permitted in the clinic. If she opened the beer here in my office that would be the end of treatment. As in the first session, she seemed relieved rather than upset by my setting some limits on her acting out.”
“She had gone to visit her dentist to have a tooth extracted. He knew that she had bad reactions to the usual anesthetics that he used. Therefore he had brought a bottle of whiskey and insisted that she have a couple of straight shots to prepare her for the extraction. She described herself as having been rather uncertain. Still she yielded to his encouragement to have one, two, and then another couple of shots. She claimed that soon she was so high that she could not resist his insistence that she perform fellatio.”
* * *
“While I have the floor, let me also disagree with Shelly’s [Sheldon’s] (and almost all other therapists’) allegation or implication that shame largely stems from early childhood experiences. Shit, no! If anything, early childhood experiences largely arise out of our innate predispositions toward inventing <shameful> conditions and actions and consequently idiotically making ourselves—and I mean making ourselves—unduly embarrassed about our inventions.” “Because Shelly’s feelings of shame in regard to the incident with his parents have a high degree of correlation with his feelings of shame today, he mistakenly assumes that the former caused the latter.” “Shelly’s parents indubitably taught him various standards of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’—including the standard, ‘You act rightly when you stubbornly refuse to imagine yourself letting either of your parents drown and wrongly when you even consider saving only one of them from drowning.’ Given such standards, and having the human tendency to adopt them, Shelly will assuredly believe that he acts ‘rightly’ when he tells his parents that under no conditions would he let either of them drown and ‘wrongly’ when he tells them that he would choose one over the other. Granted.”
“A person’s history therefore has relatively little to do with present feelings of shame or self-downing. Shelly may have learned his standards of good and bad behavior from his parents (and others), but he decided to take them seriously and he still decides to do so if he feels ashamed of anything he does today.”
“I had a female client who had serious feelings of inadequacy about herself, especially in her relations with men, and whom I helped considerably to overcome some of these feelings. She had an attractive female friend to whom she talked about me and the way I had helped her, and who got somewhat turned on to me. This friend, in her own manipulative way, managed to meet me at a series of lectures I gave and suggested that we date.
Now I knew that I’d better not do this. Not only have I refused from my first days as a therapist to have social relations with my clients—for although this may have some advantages, I recognize that it tends to lead to more harm than good—but I also have refused to maintain close relations with any of their intimates. (…) A good idea, and I invariably—or almost invariably—stick with it. But not this time! The friend of my client seemed so charming and attractive that I decided to break my self-imposed rule and to date her. I saw her a few times, got intimate with her socially and sexually, and then decided to stop seeing her because I found her much less charming and interesting than I previously had thought. In the course of my fairly brief relations with her, I deliberately mentioned nothing about my client, since I knew that they had a somewhat close relationship, and I didn’t want to give away any confidences.
Nothing happened for several weeks; and then, after I and my client’s female friend no longer saw each other, all hell suddenly broke loose. My client, Josephine, came in one day terribly upset and said that she had discovered that I had seen her friend socially. She found this most distressing for several reasons. She thought that I might have revealed some things about her to her friend. She felt constrained, now, in telling me certain feelings that she had about this woman. She confessed a sexual interest in me and said that she felt jealous that I had shown no inclination to have sex with her while I had obviously had it with Sarah. She hated Sarah for having seduced me and then having boasted about it. Most of all, curiously enough, she felt upset because I had stupidly allowed myself to get taken in by Sarah, who, according to Josephine, had no interest in me other than as a conquest, who had fooled me into thinking she had more intelligence than she actually had, and whose inherent nastiness I had presumably entirely failed to perceive.” “I, like Josephine, at first upset myself more about my mistaken diagnosis of Sarah than about anything else.” “Her interest in me stemmed mainly from her belief that I might help her with her own personal problems and from the ego boost she experienced from telling others that she had a well-known psychotherapist interested in her. Although I had told her very specifically not to mention our association to Josephine, whom I guessed would upset herself about it, she had not only told all to her friend but had also lyingly stated that she had given me up and that I still had a great interest in resuming relations with her.” “I took a chance that my relationship with Sarah would never get back to her. I really had preferred Sarah over her, and perhaps some of this preference had come through in my relationship to Josephine. I had given her an opportunity to see some of my diagnostic weaknesses—and thereby helped remove some of her confidence in me as therapist. When she had shown an overt sexual interest in me, I had quite ethically but perhaps too brusquely repulsed her, partly because at the time I already had established a sexual relationship with Sarah, and Josephine did not seem half so attractive to me. If I had never gone with Sarah, I might well have handled rebuffing Josephine in a more tactful and more therapeutic way.” “She seemed to accept the fact that I had not deliberately done anything to hurt her and had only made some understandable errors.” “Fortuitously, she got involved with a well-known psychiatrist who treated her with a dishonesty similar to Sarah’s treatment of me, and I helped her considerably in accepting herself with her gullibility [naiveness] and in breaking away from him without feeling terribly hurt.”
“I set a few more rigorous rules for myself about socializing with the friends and relatives of my clients, and eventually I mainly forgot about the entire incident.”
“If I down ‘me’, ‘myself’, or my totality for my errors, I essentially take myself out of the human condition and view myself as a subhuman. Falsely! For, as a human, I cannot very well attain superhumanness or subhumanness except by a miracle!”
“As far as I can see, you do not really admit the true wrongness of your acts if you don’t make yourself feel very guilty about them. And, even if you do acknowledge their badness, you do not motivate yourself strongly enough to change them and keep yourself from recommitting them in the future. Poppycock [Baboseira]!” “As a person who admits his own irresponsibility but who doesn’t down himself totally for having it, I save myself immense amounts of time and energy that I otherwise would spend dwelling on my poor actions, obsessively showing myself how wrongly I did them, and savagely berating myself for having such fallibility.”
“I try not to make myself guilty about making myself guilty, nor to make myself feel ashamed of making myself ashamed. I don’t find it easy! I keep slipping. My goddamned fallibility clearly remains.”
“I felt the role of therapist to be an artificial one requiring that I adopt a facade that made me feel like the newly clothed emperor. I think I persisted in this unpleasant exercise partly because doing therapy was then the wave of the future for young clinicians, partly because I was assured by colleagues and supervisors that I was reasonably competent and talented, and partly because I tend to become stubborn under duress.”
“The most difficult <incident> of all lasted about two years. In the course of some very significant changes in my life, I was subject to severe anxiety attacks while working with clients (and at other times as well). The awful feeling would gradually well up in a great surge that might last for several minutes and then gradually subside. The experience was particularly frightening because I never felt certain how <high> the surge would go. While working, for example, I felt as though if it went much further, I might fall out of my chair or flee the room (these never happened). Though appearing to occur at random, these <attacks> themselves seemed to become more intense over about two years; then I gradually became able to overcome them and resolve the underlying issues.”
CONTRA-MEDIDAS PARA MOMENTOS DE “NUDEZ TERAPÊUTICA”:
“Minimize (or eliminate) pretense in self-presentation. This is especially relevant to, and difficult for, beginning therapists.”;
Buscar uma espécie de “acordo tácito” com o paciente sobre o nível de nudez ideal que o terapeuta e o “tratando” desejam para a terapia;
Sempre ter em mente flexibilidade nas regras de resolução de problemas meta-terapêuticos – incluindo seguir ou não, conforme o caso, até mesmo ESTA regra!
O INSEGURO ESTEIO MORAL DA NAÇÃO: “He began to wonder if his suspicious attitude toward his wife was some sort of an illusion he had to maintain to give him the upper hand in the relationship, to be the constant moral superior.”
“The subject of his wife and I forming some sort of a conspiratorial love pairagainst him was never again mentioned without a lot of genuine humor associated with it. In fact, as if to further discount the possibility, he once said that he never thought I could lose enough weight anyway to be called slim or skinny by anybody.”
“While I have known her, she has worked as a topless and bottomless dancer, a masseuse in a parlor catering to conventioneers, and now nude encounter. She has been only partially successful at these jobs. She turns off as she undresses.”
“When she worked as a masseuse, she did not like to touch men’s genitals and do <a local>. It was formally against the policy of the club, although she admitted that to <jerk a customer off> got you a larger tip.”
“Here she was, earning twenty dollars a half hour (exactly my fee, dollar for minute) by sitting nude talking to men who chose their state of dress. No touching, no closeness, no real intimacy. She didn’t admit to seeing the analogies in our situations, probably because she was frightened of exploring their meaning. Her fear protected me from the full impact of the miming that she portrayed as the naked therapist.”
“Being embarrassed about experiencing a particular feeling is just the beginning of the cycle. Confronting the need to keep the feelings hidden increases its potency. Deciding to risk the uncovering process by telling the patient what has been happening inside of me can momentarily increase the embarrassment until it is released in a rush as the communication is finally made.”
O velho dilema de se apaixonar durante as sessões.
“My wife and I have written a book, Love and Ecstasy, about merger experiences in the solitary, dyadic, and group orientations.”
“I remember one patient that I worked with in the Kopp/Colman office. Yvonne was an exquisite, delicate 18-year-old rebel. Her father was a wealthy member of the State Department, her mother the dependent matron of a colonial mansion. Yvonne worked at shattering all family hypocrisy. She attacked with reckless competence, trying everything, flagrantly, desperately, and always self-destructively. She came to Shelly through some of her friends. He represented a bearded refuge for her, an adult who might understand. He sent her to me.
Her name should have been Jezebel. At that point in my life she represented impulse, license, sensuality, limitless possibilities. (…) Falling in love with her would be a lot simpler solution to my malaise than reclaiming the lost parts of my own spirit.”
“I knew I was clever enough to translate what was happening inside of me into words and actions that would facilitate her therapeutic work with me, but I wasn’t sure that I had the courage to risk such an intimate and painful personal statement, with its unknown repercussions for both of us.”
“It is not unusual now for me to feel love in a variety of forms for men and women with whom I work.” “Fantasies from therapy (in the case of Yvonne) invaded my sexual relationship with my wife and my paternal relationship with my daughter, just as those relationships entered my therapy relationship with her.” “She described her evaluation session with me and noted that she was sure I had had an erection during some of the hour. Triumphantly she proclaimed that she was positive of that fact as I got up to escort her out of the room at the end of the hour. She wondered about my ability to work in such a state and about my designs on her. She also wondered about the quality of my marriage and my sex life.” “I remembered being sexually aroused by Susan. My response had been prompted largely by the provocative role she had assumed during the hour rather than from a personal attraction. She could be very sexy, but most often used it as a weapon and a defense. I knew that precisely because of my reaction to her—arousal without great interest.” “I said I got sexually excited by many of my patients, female and male. I tried to use all my responses to an individual in my work, those of my body (including my penis) in all its states, and of my mind, with all its fantasies. I certainly did not plan to cut off parts of myself in the therapy encounter. Integrating that openness in the special setting of therapy with my family and other personal life was difficult and a challenge.”
QUANDO DOIS JUNGUIANOS SÃO CASADOS: “Libby knows me and herself well enough to assume that we could experience other people sexually and still focus our most intimate sexual expressions in each other, that she as Every-woman could become a repository for all my sexual fantasies just as I could for hers.”
Verdade e vitória são contraditórias.
Meu analista tem uma voz paciente, e eu ouvidos doutorais!
“Arthur, it takes ten years before a therapist begins to know what he’s doing.”
“Thinking that a straightforward discussion of the pot experience might ease some of this mother’s extreme fears, I asked the girls what it was like for them to smoke pot. Their replies were cautious and evasive. As I should have anticipated, they hit the ball smartly back into my court, asking me if I had smoked pot and if so, why didn’t I describe how it felt? Being a more skilled player than the girls, I could have used a therapeutic trick shot to put the ball back in their court. Yet something told me that the truth was called for here even if the shocked mother were to decide that a therapist who smoked pot was not for her family. Fortunately, it turned out well. Despite her innocence the mother is an open-minded woman who accepts differences in others.”
“Used with Karen’s permission, excerpts from her letters to me will amplify and enrich my presentation.”
“I think you protest too strongly and judge too harshly of a previous generation; but the protesting quite vehemently part interests me the most because I have seen it come out before with Carolyn; it wasn’t what you said as much as the intensity with which it was said. You see, on occasion I am also interested in getting into other people’s lives even though I do not get paid for it. I am interested in what makes them tick, and I try to remain as receptive as I can to subtle, non-verbal clues.”
“you are very, very far from being an open book. In other words, there is much about you that I do not know. I don’t really know how it makes you feel. I know at one point in the therapy I felt like I was naked, and you were a rapist, and you called me a beggar, and it hurt, and I thought: I’d rather be a beggar than a rapist. It just seemed that you kept taking and taking”
“you can’t beat them; you never beat them; all it accomplishes in the long run is letting them beat you. I don’t think either one of us would think that was a life well spent.”deixar-se levar é como ir para o inferno, pois não existe paraíso sem esforço. se isso significa que você “tem de dar valor”? Hoho, chega, descanse os nervos, o inferno não deve ser tão ruim… Me chama que eu vou!
“I did not tell you my complete reaction to your giving away one of your pictures. My initial feeling was a tinge of jealousy that you thought enough of one of your other female patients to give her a picture you liked very much. What felt like a little child in me yelled out: What are you doing? Don’t you know? I’m supposed to be the most important one! You’re not supposed to give your favorite picture to someone else! On that same level, I’m still not exactly bouncing off the walls about it; a little of the same feeling came back when you brought it up today. However, I feel it is so ridiculous, and childish, and unrealistic that I don’t even know if I completely allow myself to feel it, much less express it.”
“She wasn’t going to think you had designs on her, was she? You didn’t, did you? Then, what’s to feel uneasy about? It was a very nice thing. People should do it more often. I’m glad you did, a little jealous, but pleased.”
“I get the very strong impression from you that you like doing things according to schedule, and that you really do not take deviations too gracefully. It is too bad that people’s needs do not run according to schedule also, or maybe most of your patients can program them for their hour or whatever.”
“Fuck your schedule; it might have fucked our lives. We should have gone elsewhere, but you didn’t have to worry about that because I was already too attached to you for that, and I’m sure you didn’t lose any sleep over it. I have resented it; I didn’t realize I resented it so much.”
“She then sent a brief note to apologize for blaming me for fucking up her and her husband’s lives. Karen knew they were responsible for their own lives, and she felt badly about hitting below the belt over the issue of my schedule.” Below the belt, but not too much…
Quantos anos de serviço contribuídos como “terapendo”?
Jacqulyn S. Clements
“Alan, in his 5th year of hospitalization, had been recalling the days when he was an airplane mechanic. He concluded with the comment, <That’s why I can’t ever get married; I’m a mechanic.>
You may be noting the symbolism. What I said was, <Well, I don’t know about that. I’ve known a number of mechanics and most of them were married.>
Alan pondered this thoughtfully. Then with a twinkle in his eyes, he leaned close to me and said, <But were they schizophrenic?>”
“Telling these stories is vaguely embarrassing, but, as lived, they were really good experiences for me and for the clients. My response in each case was a silent but clear <Touché!>. I don’t recommend dumb comments; but if you’ve got a Bobby or an Alan, you can learn a lot and enjoy each other.
An incident from my practice that illustrates a negative feeling of goofing and embarrassment occurred on the day I handed Mrs. B the A-child’s appointment card. My comments made it obvious that I thought she was married to Mr. A, who was also seated in the waiting room. These weren’t new people; I’d interviewed each with their real spouses. When Mrs. B pointed out my error, I wished I could disappear into a hole in the floor, and my right arm flew up in the air. I used it to touch my hair and said, <Oh, my, where is my head today?> Then, taking the A-child back to the therapy room, I quipped, <I almost got you a new mother today—ha ha.> As far as I know this had no big effect on therapeutic progress, although I certainly wouldn’t call it a confidence builder.”
“Sophisticated clients know what Gestalters and such are like; they probably saw their 6th Fritz Perls film just last week.” Um dos fundadores de um dos ramos da Gestalt (que não é monolítica): Perls, F., Hefferline, R., & Goodman, P., Gestalt Therapy: Excitement and Growth in the Human Personality (1951).
“I went to all those miscellaneous workshops and training institutes like everybody else, but I never did manage to come home a recognizable anything. I tell them I’m a Jackie-therapist, and this means, of course, my confidence rests almost solely on results. Yes, this has bothered me some. I’ve never felt ashamed not to be a walking encyclopedia on psychoanalytic theory, but often when another therapist is visiting the premises, I feel tempted to ask my client to please get down on the floor and scream like he’s having an avant-garde breakthrough.”
“I’ve had a few clients with outstanding embarrassment records. Cindy, age 14, recalled her 1st date: She spilled Coke in the boy’s lap, bowled [derrubou] a 16, and then left his car door open, resulting in $70 worth of damage. In such award-winning-goofers I also plant seeds to the effect that they’ve hit bottom, so what’s left to fear?”
“It’s amazing how many children I’ve seen who won’t run on a dropped ball. Little princesses just pose and posture the whole game—any game. The strikeout freezers can usually stay on the team if their batting average is high enough. But princesses are eventually ridiculed and chosen last.”
NÓ CEGO: “My other chronic childhood embarrassment worry had to do with body functions. In grade school about the worst thing I could imagine was wetting my pants in class. However, I was also too embarrassed to ask to be excused to go to the restroom. Would this qualify as a double bind? I am probably one of the few people in existence who neither asked to go nor went anyway.”
“It wasn’t until this very year that I got blood on my skirt in public. I was seeing a teenage boy for therapy when it happened. I laughed.” Quando crescemos e aprendemos que dar aquela freada ou mijada na rua não é nada de mais. “Now I’ll ruin the story a little bit: The teenage boy had gone before I realized it had happened, and then I laughed.”
“Life’s traumas, goofs, negative embarrassments and such should be stored lightly. If they’re off in the warehouse, they’re hard to get at when you need them and could do something constructive with them. But even sending the empty storage cabinet to the warehouse is ill advised. Then you wouldn’t have anything to put these memories in. They’d be laying around in sight too much. There are times for getting them out, but really nobody wants to see or hear that stuff all the time, even your best friends. And how about your own probable concentration on them? That’s called negative feedback overload. To avoid repression or indiscriminate hang-out, better get those storage cabinets out of storage!” O que está sempre exposto passa a ser ignorado (como certos livros na prateleira, que estão na sua frente mas você não os vê mais).
“The hypothesis was born: Be they orthodox or atheists, Jews have one foot stuck on the wailing wall. This was a hunch, not a put-down.” “A hipótese havia nascido: Fossem ortodoxos ou ateus, os judeus têm um pé fincado no Muro das Lamentações. Isso era um palpite, não uma afirmação ou acusação.”
IDENTIFICAÇÃO ESPIRITUAL, NO NEED FOR SHOWING (wallpaper de estrela de Davi e correlatos): “My fantasies went even further. I pondered the possible effects of Jewish Depression on the theory and practice of psychotherapy. Since nearly all the geniuses and heroes in this field really are you-know-whats, there might be an accidental bias that could be labeled the J.D. factor. Non-Jewish therapists would pick it up by identification and introjection. By now, almost everybody probably has J.D. This means things may not be as bad as they look.” Ser antissemita é ser antiocidental como um todo, mas não significa ser pró-oriental. Na verdade o Oriente desconhece o pânico anti-judaico; isso é uma doença exclusiva do homem moderno autocastrador. Ser antissemita seria negar nossas mais vincadas raízes pagãs. Ser antissemita é ser um destruidor dos próprios antepassados, nobres e elevados (recado a Varg & simplórios desta era).
“Wailing Wall. To wail is to cry. A wall is a block. A crying block? Crying because of a block?” Trocadilho impossível em Português.
“Note that Adam and Eve had no neurotic human parents and did not live in an uptight culture. They didn’t even have any childhood memories. Archetypal shame may be rather far removed from psychological theories regarding its derivatives. Note also that Adam and Eve were not Jewish; they were everybody. There was a wailing wall long before the one in Jerusalem. The latter is likely a modern intensification, or reenactment.”
“For many years, as an adult, I had frequent repeats of two rather common dream themes. In one I was to be in some play. It was opening night, and the curtain was soon to rise. I couldn’t remember any of my lines. I couldn’t recall ever having been to rehearsals. I couldn’t even find a script to refresh my memory or to take, hidden, on stage with me. In the other dream it was time to go take some school exam. I hadn’t been going to class. I’d forgotten I’d even enrolled in the course. If I’d ever had the textbook, I didn’t know where it was.
Despite years of individual therapy, group encounters, and hundreds of psychological theory and how-to books, these dreams continued unchanged. Then last year I had breakthrough dreams for both of them and have not had either one since.
In the breakthrough play dream, the curtain actually goes up and I step on stage. I not only have to improvise my lines, but I’m not dressed like the others. Six women glide by in beautiful satin gowns, and I’m standing there in a terrycloth robe with a Kotex [absorvente] sticking out of one pocket. Everybody laughs. In the school dream, I go to the room, take the exam, and presumably flunk.”
“All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6) is a commentary on general goodness, not just what we call self-righteousness. As such, it always sounded like a real bummer to me. Maybe the frequency of righteousness wasn’t high, but what a slam on quality. I once thought: Now there’s a good recipe for neurosis.”
“Of course, the righteousness insight didn’t really pop out of nowhere. I’ve been on a gradually emerging spiritual journey for 3 or 4 years now. Sometime during this period the following dialogue probably took place, although I’m surely still working on the last line of it.”
Donald D. Lathrop
“<I have never had a failure in psychotherapy!> My out-bragging the braggart was so incredible that it shut him up. What a blessing for me! The rationalizations that would have poured out of my mouth in justification for my clearly unreal claim humiliate me even now as I think of them. Evidently he recognized at that point that I was crazy. He never attended another supervisory session.”
“The type of therapy—the goals, the expectations, the method—defines failure. In psychoanalysis, the best studied of the therapies, failure has two important faces. One is the therapy that never ends, the <interminable analysis>. The other is the therapy that ends without a full completion of one of the technical dimensions of (psychoanalytic) treatment, namely the resolution of the transference neurosis.” “In most psychotherapies, the transference neurosis is left almost totally untouched. Good results are achieved by minimizing its development.”
“We talked about Arlene Mildred and her father. There were parallels. Arlene had been suicidal for months and was perpetually rejected by her parents. Yet if she killed herself, there is no question that her father would be on the phone screaming threats at me.”
“I feel better (as always) when I work, when I do the work that is my calling. It’s hard to concentrate, but there is relief for me in involving myself with the immediate problems of the living. Now there is something new. I am now haunted by the reality that no one in my care, not my patients, not my family, not myself, is safe from death through my unawareness. The only relief for me is talking into my machine, blindly recording for what purpose I do not know.”
“I recalled today that Mildred had had an illegitimate child and that her parents had condemned her for it; they had disinherited her, had left her with the feeling that in no way could she redeem herself. Now that she is gone, they are going to punish me.”
“But maybe not! Sometime in the late afternoon, sometime after the first woman had comforted me, I began to permit myself to think that maybe they would not sue me. Even now this goes back and forth, now one way, now the other. I know that I will just be waiting, waiting for however long it will be before the letter comes, before the papers are served, waiting and scared and at the same time a little defiant. They are not going to destroy me. I am not going to destroy myself.”
“That’s another strange quirk in this. I can no longer take comfort, as I have for so many years, in fantasies of committing suicide myself. Some recent realizations have convinced me that not only is suicide no longer a possibility for me, but comforting myself with fantasies of suicide is no longer acceptable. How strange, how ironic, that at the same time this door is closed to me, I have experienced the first suicide in my professional career.”
“These are all games. Nothing changes the reality. Mildred is dead. The games I now play to keep other men from judging me, from punishing me for my unconsciousness, for my carelessness, for whatever part is my fault, these games do not seem to me to have much to do with Mildred and me.”
“Tonight Mildred’s parents are busy making the plans and carrying out the procedure of burying their daughter. When they are through, they will come to bury me.”
“She told me that she was responsible for all of the evil in the world. I told her she did not frighten me; I told her, as I have told lots of crazy people, that I would expose myself to her and then we would see whether she was indeed the overseer of all evil. Now she is laughing. I just wish she wasn’t angry. Of all the helpers, all the professionals who have been involved with this young woman over 6 years of suicidal behavior, she saved her act of murder for me. I can stand the laughter, but the contempt, the anger, the hurt to my therapist’s arrogance, that really digs in hard.
Strange that this poor woman and I came together. We were brought together by the impersonal forces of the State. She was covered for her psychiatric care by welfare. I was and am obliged to make much of my living by treating these people. Like many such patients, she did not even pick me. I was picked for her by the good-hearted woman who runs the boarding house where Mildred was sent after her release from the state hospital. This totally untrained person gets the horribly sick, broken souls after they are hastily patched up and discharged from the state hospital. She is understandably anxious to find some professional to take care of her boarders. Many of them are as severely disturbed as any patient I have ever seen in the backward of a state hospital.
From the first time she came to my office, Mildred did not want to see me. In fact, for her first appointment, she refused to come in. I was glad. I didn’t need any more patients. I didn’t need to convince this unattractive young woman that I could help her. So I let her go. But the lady with the burden of taking care of her day in and day out was insistent, and a reappointment was made. Second try: I got her into the office. It was at this time she told me that she was the carrier of all evil. I found something to like in her. Her arrogance regarding evil stimulated my own in a competitive sort of way. I’ve known since I was a kid that no one is <badder> than I am. After that beginning, it was a succession of broken appointments, my happily giving up on her because she was stuck in a hospital in another part of the state, getting her back, working within totally unrealistic limitations of time and money imposed by welfare regulations, step by step to the final miserable result.”
“I was aware, as dawn broke this morning during my run on the beach, of Mildred’s blind eyes that do not see this sunrise. My dream last night was that I was working with some other people, trying to finish a job. Although I was working hard and felt the importance of finishing the job, I was not frantic. Then I was relaxing with some people, perhaps having cocktails, and a young woman asked me whether I would be giving a language course. I replied, Who, me? Parlez-vous ze Deutsch? Everyone laughed, for I had demonstrated that language was my very weakest subject.
I did not understand this seemingly light-hearted and trivial dream in response to Mildred’s death. Then I went to consult my friend, my guide, Max Zeller (our relationship was called Jungian analysis, or psychotherapy, and I was the patient). Max suggested that we consult the I Ching. This was a beautiful idea. It was the very sort of objective statement that I would be willing to accept. I certainly did not want any more comforting.
I asked the I Ching about the nature of my involvement with Mildred, the meaning of this experience. The answer was hexagram 28, <The Preponderance of the Great>. In this ancient Chinese symbolism was revealed a union of solidness, steadfastness, and joy. My light-hearted dream of last night now makes sense to me. As a student, much less a teacher of the language of the unconscious, I am a rank beginner. My life is the task that must be completed. As the dream says, I no longer work frantically at the task, imagining that I will thus impress the gods or get the job done, i.e., reach perfection. The hexagram also comforts me in my experience of inner peace, my lack of grief. I had feared that this was merely denial on my part, the refusal to feel the expected emotions. But the ancient book of Chinese wisdom suggests that grief and breast-beating are simply not part of this experience.”
“Now it is years later. I never heard another word from Mildred’s parents. The boyfriend who had encouraged her to sign herself out of the hospital against my advice called a couple of times. He mainly wanted to share his feeling that all of us had been bound together by a cosmic experience. I could agree—since he made no further demand on me. I was satisfied that he had forgiven himself as I had myself.
My failure, as I now see it, was in not being aware of the purpose of my treatment of Mildred. This young woman had been in agony for years, convinced that she was personally responsible for all of the evil in the world. She had tried repeatedly to solve both her own excruciating pain and the world’s unnecessary suffering by killing herself. However, she had always been too disorganized, too fragmented to succeed. I had treated her with medication and with psychotherapy so that she finally had the necessary ego resources to carry through a definite act of self-annihilation. My job was to cure her so she could kill herself! My failure was in remaining unconscious, in not being willing to be fully responsible for my part of the therapeutic contract.
I had known for years before this incident that the danger of suicide is greatest during the recovery phase. I knew that I could have legally detained her for a while longer. It would have been a lot of trouble, but it could have been done. The fact is, I just didn’t care enough about Mildred. That’s what was lethal.
I don’t want to slip into moralizing. That has no place in a world that is moving slowly but surely away from judgment, away from manipulation through guilt. I am convinced that my own refusal of guilt in Mildred’s death was the key to my not being punished by society. If we permit guilt to take over, we communicate to others their right to take vengeance on us.”Meu satânico erro em quase todos os períodos turbulentos da minha vida: ser cristão demais! Jussara, Maria das Graças, veteranos bobiólogos, até mesmo indivíduos estranhos, conhecidos na véspera… sempre se aproveitaram dessa faceta, tantos rostos descarnados disponíveis para umas pancadinhas, impunemente… Felizmente minha língua e meus dedos, embora em efeito retardado, isso lá é verdade, não seguem ordens ou ditames do “corpo típico” (o que me lembra TÍSICO), se é que se me entende. Aloprados e mais sinceros do que idiotas e bons, eles procedem à vendeta; “fora de contexto” não existe na perspectiva dessas duas instâncias, verdadeiras guias desta carne que transpira. Uma vez, em que não importa quanto veneno a serpente inoculasse eu jamais reconheceria qualquer porcentagem de culpa: Isabel the Unimportant Nóia, leprosa que se filia com os tipos mais tortos e mendicantes, desajustados, dessa Brasília imunda (e por isso me conhece!), não tinha nenhuma razão, mas, ainda pior, nenhuma chance de, com razão ou não, me convencer de minha responsabilidade no incidente que precipitou meu divórcio. Isto não é dizer que esse tipo de pessoa sem conhecimento causal algum tem qualquer ciência socrática de que nada sabe: pelo contrário, uma Unimportant Bell é sempre e perigosamente a “personalidade forte” que carrega uma fé cega, uma autoconfiança ilimitada nos próprios métodos, a pura contingência e falta de método, a vida informe e tosca, não-lixada, torpe como madeira matéria-prima. Estas pessoas são tão fanáticas em seu niilismo inócuo quanto qualquer dogmático tentando reinjetar, atavicamente, tabus e ritos milenares já superados na nossa sociedade protestantemente laica (faz parte do jogo de cena a impressão de que os evangélicos nunca foram tão poderosos, mas é uma força de castelo de açúcar, com dilúvios à vista…). Não temos rigidez e teimosia para levar adiante nenhum propósito que não tenha nascido ontem mesmo, enquanto civilização brasileira pós-moderna. Os mais doidos e inconseqüentes que já conheço há anos, mesmo que sem qualquer padrão real, são os únicos que posso descrever com precisão em seu martelar psicológico entediante.
ATENÇÃO, FIÉIS! NOSSOS PLANOS FORAM ANTECIPADOS PARA ONTEM: “All of my life I have failed. All of my life, I have suffered depression as a consequence. But I would far rather take my punishment as depression than project the responsibility for punishing me out onto the world. Others are not likely to be as merciful to me as my own educated inner Judge. I had a revelation once: There is no judgment on Judgment Day.”
“Unlike Joseph K. in Kafka’s The Trial, I know what I am guilty of”
“I am so nervous! I take some Thorazine. (Why Thorazine! Especially when I’ve never taken any psychotropic drug—not even marijuana.)”
“(And now I know what my patients are talking about when they tell of their anxiety.)” Weird. Sempre achei que a descoberta antecedia a profissão!
“Were you aware that a contract with a ‘schizophrenic’ often has little binding power?”
“The Tribunal gets really hot when it suspects sexual misconduct on my part. The judges are terribly suspicious of anything that looks the slightest bit sexual. (This sometimes is a hard one because they don’t always agree among themselves about what is sexual and about the rules of common practice and the behavior of the hypothetical <reasonable therapist.>) The Tribunal casts its confronting eyes over my writings and challenges me about such statements as follows:
She says: If it hadn’t been for your response to me, your holding me, I don’t think I would ever have come to believe anyone could find me sexually desirable; no matter how long we had just talked about it.
I’m amazed and overjoyed. I had picked up her message that she genuinely desired to have me-as-a-person act warmly, lovingly, intimately, with her-as-a-person, but I was uncertain whether I should risk it. Now I can see that by limiting my risk I would have seriously limited her possibilities.
My judges are especially wary whenever I Hold a patient.” “they often are skeptical and insist on reading between the lines and beyond what I have written.”
“If I sense the person is feeling sexual as a child, I let him know he is safe. If I sense the person is sexualizing to avoid, I try to encourage his getting to his child; if he does not, we sit up and work on it. This is also true if I sense that I am sexualizing the situation. I do not continue TO HOLD a patient if I stay with my sexual feelings”
“The Age of Aquarius enables me to avoid detection; no one looks that closely, and whoever does is ridiculed for being <uptight>.”
“What would you have me do? What kind of job would you permit me to hold that would enable me to retain my humanity, use my skills and talents and develop my potential? Remember, my peers are no better than me. The few unflawed noble souls are, wisely, going about their business in an unpublic way; they couldn’t care less. I have to live somewhere, someone has to share my company—otherwise that would be too inhuman a punishment to fit my misdemeanors. Reforming seems like such a difficult, even impossible task. Disappearing feels easier, yet, I’d have to take myself along. I suppose I’ll just go along as I have and hope that nothing happens.”
why not just a few?
“In the social work profession, close, intensive working together with clients toward personality shifts and problem-solving is called <counseling>. This is a term that suggests <telling> someone what to do as a way to be helpful.” “It is the social worker—the woman—whom the public mind most often identifies as the offerer of the <concrete> service. The intangibles, the profundities, are within the male preserve.” “Sigmund Freud and Otto Rank supplied the educational approaches that dominate the field. When I was in graduate school the faculty was overwhelmingly female. The course in psychological theory was the only one not taught by a social worker. Instead, the instructor was a male psychiatrist with a faculty appointment as <consultant>.”
“Even those social work agencies most heavily invested in offering counseling rather than concrete services rely upon regularly scheduled psychiatric consultations to determine and consolidate diagnosis and the direction of treatment. When I was a caseworker in a family service agency, it was a male psychiatrist who was hired to offer his expert opinion on a weekly, one-hour consultant schedule. There were only one or two caseworkers who could <present> within this frame.”
“Mistakes or therapeutic errors (although they were not so designated) were to be kept <in house>. This was a familiar and oft-taught lesson.” “The case supervisor, my supervisor, and I would all sit there chatting amiably, awaiting the arrival of the psychiatrist. He always came late because his schedule was so busy. All four of us would then engage in seeming accord as if there was only one way to work with my clients, one direction for me to follow. Because my submitted materials reflected only that I knew exactly what to do, we could then all bask in the aura of certain knowledge and perfection.”
“Making one’s way is equated with manipulation and control. Although the kernel of this truth first became evident in my work in a social work unit (a family service agency), it was even more glaringly so when I began working in mental health facilities. Ironically, these are considered the apex of clinical social work placements because of the opportunity they offer to do counseling—or therapy—without the impediment of the concrete service traditionally found in social work agencies. I had decided to go this route because of my wish to work with clients more intensively and knowledgeably.”
“When I applied for the job I wanted, I was turned down by the woman who was the Chief Social Worker. She said I was too inexperienced and would make too many mistakes. Besides that, I had been trained as a Rankian and obviously would not fit in with the Freudian approach of that particular clinic. She knew that my being there would <embarrass> the social workers who needed to keep up with (if not be better than) the medical staff. The chief of the service was a male psychiatrist. I saw him next. He was pleased to maintain his position in the ongoing struggle by overruling her and hiring me. In any case, he could not conceive that anything I would do could be that important. He knew that it was the doctors who ran that clinic.”
“the <family> was considered to be my area of expertise. The people I saw were labeled <clients> in deference to their secondary standing in the treatment matrix.”
“In my mind, women were less likely to be accepted into medical school than men, and girls were not as skilled as boys in dealing with prerequisite subjects such as science and mathematics. Also, becoming a social worker consumes less time and less money. Clearly, expending less energy befits a profession which is only of secondary importance.”
“Away from my clients I wept copiously. With them, I insisted on appearing intact and untroubled. I feel embarrassed now by my complicity in perpetuating their assurances that I could be perfect”
Arthur L. Kovacs
“Presented at the symposium Critical Failure Experiences in Psychotherapy, Division 29 Midwinter Meeting, 1972.”
“I now know that this formulation is nonsense. What we do with our patients— whether we do so deviously and cunningly or overtly and brashly—is to affirm our own identities in the struggle with their struggles. We use them, for better or worse, to secure precious nourishments, to preserve our sanity, to make our lives possible, and to reassure ourselves in the face of that ineffable dread that lurks always beyond the margins of our awareness and can be heard as a very quiet electric hum emanating from the depths of our souls when everything is silent.”
“In this way, we can use our training to utter comfortable lies to ourselves and to avoid looking at the processes by which the persons we are either catalyze or defeat those who move in communion with us.”
“…what? Disaster? Chaos? Stalemate? I do not even know the right word to describe the outcome.”
“Part of me needed a persecutor, and Gwen supplied the potential to play the part.” “When I no longer needed to be persecuted, we somehow parted.”
“subjective time is always more important than objective time”
“Gwen came to see me because she had begun to experience severe anxiety attacks in school. Most of these were evoked by encounters with her psychology instructor, a married, middle-aged man. She was convinced, in her own paranoid fashion (to which I was unutterably blind in the beginning), that he was making seductive, obscene, and shaming gestures toward her continually. When he discussed masturbation in his lectures, she believed he was shaming her before the whole class, accusing her and revealing that she was a masturbator. She would blush, feel terrified, and have to leave class.Gwen was frequently aware of his genitals bulging in his trousers. She often believed he dressed in a fashion to accentuate them and positioned himself in such a way as to exhibit his endowments to her. When he talked about sexual matters, she <knew> he was lusting after her. I need to make it clear that, as I do so often, I partly trusted Gwen’s craziness and indeed believed there was something in the instructor that longed for her. She was, I must repeat, deadly cute.”
“When she returned to her next appointment, she was furious with me. She screamed at me that I was a rotten fucker, that I had sent her to her humiliation, that I took sadistic pleasure in teasing her. The force of her violence was incredible; her features contorted into a malevolent hatred that I have seldom seen. For the first time, I sensed the presence of some awesome murderousness in her, and I felt frightened. The pitch of her screaming was louder than I had ever heard. I believe, and still do, that the instructor had manipulated her and given her a dose of clever poison to choke on as he protected himself from her paranoid wisdom. I tried to get her to hear that. Her ears were closed by the noise of her own anguished, vicious screaming. She broke out of my office, fleeing from me and from her rage, almost wrenching the door off its hinges—although she probably does not weigh more than 95 pounds [43kg].”
“My beliefs, inflicted on Gwen and most others who opened themselves to me, were my armor, my sword, and my shield at that time of my life.”
“The next many months Gwen found exquisite ways to torment me, even though I could not get her to come to my office. She began, for example, to call me, usually around 3A.M.. I would stagger out of bed to answer the phone. There would be an ominous silence, then a loud screaming, You goddam piece of shit! I want you to die! or something equally vicious and abusive. Suddenly the phone would be hung up and it would be over until the next time. I believed then that my life was in the grip of some malevolent, overwhelmingly crushing principle, for Gwen’s timing was exquisite. Most of her calls occurred at times when I felt too weary, too battered to stand one more moment of anguish in my life. My struggle to build a new existence was beginning to consume me. Most of those nights I had fallen into fitful sleep after lengthy episodes of bitter acrimony with my former wife or of crying desperate tears at having to cross such a limitless desert alone. Gwen’s calls would cause me to start up from steamy, sweat-rumpled sheets in terror; I did not feel the strength to deal with her.”
“At last, after an absence of 4 months, I finally received a daytime call from Gwen. She asked to make an appointment! When she came in, she told me that she had been thinking about her therapy a lot and that she felt she wanted to enter group therapy. Having others around would, she believed, keep the 2 of us from getting into terrible trouble together. (I often notice patients possess incredible wisdom, if we would only listen!) I also, as did she, wanted and needed to dilute the horrible intensity of what had been transpiring between us. I readily assented, and Gwen started group.”
“In her middle adolescence, Gwen’s stepfather had a psychotic episode, preceded by a period of great violence during which he brandished a pistol repeatedly, screamed at his family members often in desperate viciousness, and engaged in great, raging, hallucinatory battles with his wife—during which he sometimes bloodied her or broke her bones—before he himself finally went to a psychiatric hospital. Gwen trembled violently as she remembered and related these things. During this period of treatment, also, Gwen got herself a job as a secretary, decided to attend college at night, and moved into her own apartment, separating from her family for the first time in her life. And I felt smug, pompous, and marvelously effective as her therapist. What an ass I was!”
“Once I was working with another patient. The other patient was pouting, sullen, withholding. She had come up to the edge of something and now sat stolidly, defiantly, unyieldingly. I became exasperated and started shaking her. The next thing I knew, Gwen threw herself on me, fists flailing, screaming You fucker, you fucker! It took 10 people to pry her off of me. I was very shaken.
Another marathon. Days, months, years—I do not know how much later. I had taken 20 patients into the Sierra Nevada. We were camped out in a snow-surrounded, glacial-scoured, lake-filled paradise. I had asked a woman along to share my sleeping bag at night. As I look back, I now feel ashamed of my choice. My companion was young and very pretty but had nothing more for me than sexual compliance. For this she wished to present me with a large number of emotional demands. At that period of my life I was desperate for any crumb of nourishment, did not appreciate my worth, and would hunger after anyone I believed would have me. We fought a great deal that weekend. Gwen kept watching the two of us balefully. During the 2nd day, she asked the largest man in the group to restrain her physically while she talked to me. He did so, and once again she shifted gears into her screaming viciousness, calling me a piece of shit, a motherfucker—any obscenity she could muster. He held her so she wouldn’t hit me. She struggled hard to get free while she vilified me. The gist of her tirade was, of course, that I was a moral leper, a vile sensualist, and a user of people.
As my first marriage continued to die and as I searched for the goodness I so longed for, Gwen became somehow in my mind the world’s representation of the established moral order. She had been selected to make me suffer for my sinful attempts to make a new life. The night calls and screaming at me over the telephone continued, usually when I could least bear them. Incredible vituperation also spilled out of her in group each week.”
“Weekends are always terrible when marriages are dying.”
“I want her dead! I suddenly knew it and began to fantasize the myriad ways I could kill her. I danced exultantly over her broken corpse. Her life must end so that mine could go on! (…) That shitty, stinking little cunt-bitch! I arrived at work trembling in fearful awe over the intensity of my own murderousness. That night in group my patience was exhausted. The 2 of us got into a screaming battle with each other. I told her how I longed for her to die. We traded insults and murderous fantasies. I felt momentarily better.
Another night—weeks later. I am talking to someone else about masturbation. Gwen’s paranoia flares up again. She accuses me of sitting with my legs apart to compel her to stare at my crotch. She insists that I am talking about masturbation to shame her. She yells that I should get it straight once and for all that she does not masturbate. I get furious. I tell her that she is a stupid little bitch. I tell her she is 20 years old and that it is time she started masturbating. I describe to her how to do it and order her to go home and carry out my instructions after group. I add that I never want to hear anything about masturbation from her again. She becomes silent. Finally, I start searching my heart about her accusations. I tell her that they are partly justified, that when I first met her I had indeed tried her on in fantasy as a possible lover. I assented that I had probably teased her provocatively and flirted with her in subtle ways. I admitted to her the crazy desperation that seized most of my life then, the hunger to be at rest in a good woman’s arms. I added that my fantasies about her had died, though, soon after my getting to know her—that she was not my other half, nor what I needed for me. I said that I regretted that fact. I believed that my inability even to imagine her any longer as a partner to me was a sad tragedy. I felt forlorn as I talked to her. I closed the group by expressing my wish that a day might come before either of us were dead when once again she could stir me in such a way as to invoke in me imagery of her being my woman. I knew that that would be a sign that something profound had happened to each of us.
Early the next morning, Gwen called. She asked if she could have an individual appointment with me. I had a cancellation that afternoon and readily assented. At the appointed hour, I opened the waiting room door. Her face was contracted with rage. As she walked by me, she slapped my face. When we entered my office, I asked her what the hell that had been for. She screamed that I had exposed, shamed, and humiliated her in front of her friends in group. Then she went berserk and threw herself on me, trying to claw my face and spitting at me as we tussled. We crashed to the floor, spilling furniture and books everywhere. I finally subdued her, and as she began to feel the assertion of my strength and control she murmured between clenched teeth: Go ahead, you bastard. Fuck me. I told her I wasn’t interested. She began to sob convulsively. I had never seen her like that. She was suddenly very little and helpless, a 3-year-old who had been running around in murderous fury, trying to pretend that she had adult competencies lest the world penetrate her disguise and annihilate her. An image is indelibly burned into my awareness: the two of us sitting there on the floor in the midst of the rubble of my office, Gwen sobbing helplessly in my arms, my rocking her and feeling rubber-kneed and weak from the awe and fearfulness of what we had just experienced.”
“She began describing her stepfather coming into her room one night. Gwen stopped, flushed, went incredibly tense, and would not go on.” “My instructions to her to enter into a dialogue with the half-fantasied, half-remembered shade of that man on that nameless occasion precipitated a kind of trance-like state. Gwen became 14 again. She relived and reproduced what I knew was in store for all of us—her stepfather’s feared, longed-for, luscious, tormenting, lacerating, hungering attempted rape of her that awful night of her memory. Who knows whether the events were real or not? I still do not. But their reality was powerful that evening she described them to us.”
“Her tear-drowned eyes remained closed. I picked her up and rocked her as I would my own daughter. At first she drank me in. Then I felt her stiffen. I knew intuitively what was happening, and I said to Gwen, No, I don’t have an erection. She realized it too, at the same time, and turned to rubber once again in my lap. Yet, at that moment, I sensed our relationship was doomed and hopeless. If I held her at some emotional distance to placate her longing, terrified struggle over being penetrated, she would rail at me for being no help, disinterested or worthless to her. If she captured my attention, and I started to move closer to her, I would become the bearded satyr—too exciting, too forbidden, and too dangerous to deal with. Either way the end result was an outburst of fearful hatred. I talked to her often about this frustrated, impotent dilemma into which she thrust me. It never did any good.
Instead, Gwen began to separate from me. She started to come to group less and less. At first I felt comfortable with this, for the events of her life demonstrated a thrust toward increasing competency and mastery. She received a significant promotion at work.She separated from her boyhood lover and began to explore the possibilities of loving a much more capable man a few years older than she was. (…) One day she called me to ask me for a referral. A friend who did not have much money wanted to enter therapy and asked her, so she said, for the name of a good clinic. I provided this to her, and I added that the friend should ask for Dr. X, if possible, at that agency for I knew he had a good reputation. Three months later I found out, when Gwen began to talk matter-of-factly about it in group, that it was Gwen herself who had gone to see Dr. X and that Dr. X had begun seeing her, not at the clinic, but in his private practice!”
“She finally mustered the courage to tell her new lover that she was falling in love with him and to ask him for more of himself than he had been willing to give her thus far. He smiled, told her that she was a sweet thing, but that all he wanted her for was an occasional night in the sack. He laughed delightedly at her precious gift of her avowing that she wanted him, and he went to the refrigerator to break out a bottle of champagne. Gwen went berserk, tore up the man’s apartment, and forced him to throw her out bodily. She then came to group the next week, started up her screaming machine again, complained that I was an evil monster who ruined people’s lives, and stormed out of the office. I did not see Gwen again for three months. I was relieved. I thought she was gone forever, and I was happy. I had at last left my previous life, was living alone, and felt joyously in love with the woman who is now my wife. Gwen’s seeming departure was a mystical sign to me that my perilous journey was at last over and that I would be able to rest in my wife’s arms, exhausted, ecstatic, and optimistic about what we were beginning to build.
Much to my surprise, Gwen signed up for a weekend marathon [!] I held the next January. My soon-to-be wife accompanied me on that occasion. As I relive those moments, I remember how Gwen stared at the two of us in hateful envy. She detested my happiness. She tried to interfere, with sarcasm and cruel mockery, in any work I attempted to do. I finally stopped everything to contend with her. I was quaking with tension. After Gwen played many screaming broken records over and over again, I asked her what the hell she wanted from me. To my astonishment, she softened and asked to be held. Haltingly, I agreed. She came and sat next to me. I put my arm around her and she leaned against me, but I felt some kind of stiffness and unyieldingness in her manner and bearing. I told her I missed the vulnerable child she had—on a precious very few occasions—allowed herself to be with me. My wife, in her usual marvelously intuitive fashion, saw the look in Gwen’s eyes and began to speak to her of her own struggles with pride and envy. They swapped tales of being children, of longing for good fathers, and of all the turmoil and fear such longings create. My wife urged that Gwen be resolute in searching for what she wanted and that she not allow her fears of other women’s retribution to turn her aside from her quest. Gwen softened and allowed herself at last to surrender to being held. Later in the night one of the women in the group asked Gwen for permission to, and indeed did, feed her from a baby’s bottle. [Ah, kleinianos!]
Gwen then disappeared from my life. Once in a while I would get a phone call from her complaining bitterly about the cold, cruel, and vicious treatment she was receiving at the hands of Dr. X. I urged her each time to discuss her grievances, real or imagined, with him and told her she was always welcome, if she wished, to return to group—that many people missed her and asked about her. Last June, I got a call from her again. She and Dr. X had gotten into a fight, and he had thrown her out of therapy, saying that he was sick of her vicious bitchiness, would not put up with it anymore, and was not going to see her again. Gwen sounded crazy and frightened on the phone. I began to get anxious.
Two weeks later I came into my office and found it at shambles. All my books had been thrown on the floor. The furniture was overturned. Papers had been ripped up. A cover from Time magazine, the one with Jesus Christ Superstar on it, had been ripped off. A knife, thrust through the face of Jesus, impaled it to my couch. I knew immediately who had done it, and I began to fear for my life. Then Gwen called and asked for an individual appointment. I refused, telling her that I was afraid of the violence in her. I urged her to come to group so that we could talk where we would both be safe. She screamed at me and hung up.”
“Three weeks later, a fireman came into my office. Gwen had been gathered in off the roof of my building after having threatened noisily for an hour to jump.” “The physician in charge called me. He said Gwen had confessed to him it was the 3rd attempt she had made on her life in 48 hours.”
“The mother reported that Gwen had assaulted her parents and her father’s psychiatrist during the past week. I begged the mother to have Gwen hospitalized. Instead the mother screamed at me for being <one of the fucking Jew-doctors> that had ruined her daughter’s life. Screaming in fury, she told me she was going to take Gwen home. For the next 3 weeks I walked in dread, not knowing whether Gwen was alive or dead, not knowing if she would come at me out of some other dark night, this time with a weapon.
Late in July, Gwen called again. She asked for an appointment. For some reason known only to my sense of the uncanny¹, I granted her request. I was terrified, but I needed to confront some primitive dread in me. I was sick to death of being a person who always ducked bullies and fled from the possibility of violence. She would be the occasion for me to confront me.”
¹ Referência freudiana
“She related to me that she had made appointments with 8 different therapists in the past 4 weeks and had physically assaulted all 8 of them and fled.”
“I guess I’ll live. But I don’t think I’m going to go on with therapy.”
“As she disappeared down the hall she smiled bravely and called out over her shoulder, You’re the only one who always lets me come back. I have not seen or heard from her this past 3 years.”
“Gwen served me well as my vicious companion at a time I needed one. The impress of her being will always be with me.”
Hobart F. Thomas
“On several occasions I have experienced deep feelings of love and/or sexual attraction for clients. At other times I have felt and expressed feelings of irritation and anger. None of these emotionally charged situations, however, seems to provide the devastating frustration of those in which no truly personal contact occurred. I am recalling the long and seemingly fruitless hours spent with depressed patients in mental institutions, which seem to put one’s faith in a therapeutic process to the ultimate test.”
“Perhaps the toughest experiences of my career were the days of attempting to practice before I myself had undergone personal therapy. I had mastered the knowledge, techniques, and procedures well enough to obtain a clinical Ph.D., but the heart and guts of the process were missing. Bizarre as it may sound, I even recall on more than one occasion actually envying the experiences of some of my clients in therapy.”
“Approximately 4 years after completing a doctorate, I entered personal therapy. Reasons for the long delay are not easy to determine. In spite of episodes such as the above, I seemed to be endowed with sufficient ego strength to keep the show going. Besides, I was not convinced that the Freudian model and many of its practitioners, who represented the bulk of my exposure to clinical practice at the time, were the answer either to my own or to the world’s problems. It was then, and is now, my conviction that one best chooses a therapist out of some deep intuitive place, and one can do no better than to follow one’s feelings when making such a choice.”
“Bouts with the perfection monster”
“Being <analyzed>, at least in the circles in which I traveled at the time, also qualified one for membership in a rather exclusive club. A part of me wanted to belong, to be accepted, to be part of the action. Another part, for whatever reasons, refused to join up and pay the membership dues.”
“Ironically, my impression is that, currently, the Jungian school is considered more <in> [fashion] than the Freudian. At the time, such was definitely not the case.”
“What if all of a sudden I can’t function?”
“The outer drama in which therapist and client each play their respective roles continues, apparently without interruption, until the end of the hour.”
“The experience of panic occasionally recurs, sometimes in the consulting room, sometimes while teaching a class, or sometimes during seemingly ordinary conversation—usually, in each case, when I feel pretty much in charge and everything appears to be running smoothly. (Another clue here, perhaps?)”
“really plays well for his age”
“We need not always stand alone.”
“Look, Mom, I finally made it!”
“My hunch is that the state of panic is a corrective, devised by my wiser Self to help put things back in the proper perspective—a real therapeutic kick in the ass to remind me that I’m not God.” My hunch is that my panic is for me to saying Farewell, father!
“it is essential to know how to let be.”
“that’s all: [be] midwife. You can relax.”
“My perfection bogey-man stays with me a good deal of the time, however. Having experienced that paradisaical state of Being, I do keep searching for ways to get there and stay there. Even when I appear to be laying back, I’m trying—trying to do, trying not to do. And, too often, in rushing to reach home I forget to smell the flowers along the way.”
NO, NOT FREUD: “When my own therapists revealed themselves to me as persons, not gods, I soon realized that human imperfection has about it its own particular beauty.”
Joen Fagan (mulher – informação relevante para um dos casos que ela irá contar!)
“One of my oracles is the dictionary. Built into the derivation of words and the range of their meanings is a cohesion of human experience. So I asked Webster the meaning of naked, and found my eye pausing over and returning to <defenseless, unarmed, lacking confirmation or support.> As I sat, feeling my way into these meanings, I remembered William.”
“He sat in the front row, nodding at the right times and laughing at my jokes, behaviors much appreciated by a teacher.” “You know so much about this; don’t you think…?” or “Why wouldn’t it be true that…?”
“I was lonely, but people had to press against me to become friends; even though I needed and wanted them, my reserve and hesitancy took some broaching. It was the same with students who had asked me to counsel with them. They had to persist past my uncertainty and self-doubts. So I accepted some intrusiveness and tolerated my discomfort with him without firm limits or comments.”
“Did I think he needed to go back into therapy? Did I think he was crazy? His father had said that to him this week. His wife had told him that too. But he thought he was doing well. Would I see him for therapy?
You’re not finished with Carl. Besides, I won’t see students who are taking courses from me for therapy. (Avoiding saying, of course, that I doubted my ability to handle him or that he was too manipulative.)
Well, will you have lunch with me? Why not?
He was becoming a nuisance. Once, as he got up to go, he suddenly leaned over and tried to kiss me. I was angry then and told him so.”
“Did I think he was crazy? He had been hospitalized before. What did I think? <I think you’re bothered about a number of things and should go back and see Carl.>”
“Anyway, in another week summer vacation would start, and 3 months away from the college would solve the whole thing.”
“The next morning an envelope was in the mailbox at my house; it was a somewhat confused but humorous letter from William saying he had decided to spend the summer in a nearby public park and inviting me to join him.”
“The next day there was another letter, more angry and threatening, with some sexual allusions that were immediately denied. You know, of course, that I’m just kidding. I love you and wouldn’t hurt you or do you harm. I began feeling frightened and did not sleep well. The letter the next day was even more threatening. If you won’t see me, you won’t see anybody. I want you and I’ll get you.”
“The father called me later that afternoon to say that he had found William and had had him admitted to a psychiatric ward. My relief, though, was short-lived. Letters now started coming through the mail, openly delusional, abusive, threatening, and sexually blatant. Again I waited and did nothing, not knowing anything to do. Should I contact his unit? Or him? Or his father? To do what? Say I was scared? Then his father called again. He thought I might want to know that William had escaped from the ward.
There was a paranoid somewhere in the city and I was the center of his delusions. Several days of extreme anxiety. I put chain locks on my doors and jumped at noises. I remembered a patient at the hospital where I had interned, who, ten years after his last contact with a former female therapist, still maintained a similar life-focusing preoccupation with her. The hospital viewed him as sufficiently dangerous to call and warn her when he escaped”
“I remembered other threats to therapists and attacks by patients, and I frantically found work to do and friends to be with.”
“Shortly after that an FBI agent called to say they had investigated the forgery at the request of the bank but did not recommend pressing charges since William was now in the psychiatric ward at Bellevue. Again, relief.
Once every few months a postcard came, and one time, a box of candy on Valentine’s Day. He might no longer have been paranoid, but I was; thinking there was a chance it was poisoned, I threw it away. The sight of the neat, familiar writing could still evoke anxiety, but the cards came less and less frequently until finally a year or more had passed with nothing to remind me of him.”
“Do you know that you saved my life?
No, William, I didn’t know that.
He stood up, went to the door, paused, said goodbye, and left. I realized that I had no idea what he had meant.”
“Do you know, William, how much you taught me about the impossibility of running?”
Barbara Jo Brothers (e sim, é só uma pessoa)
“I am caught. There is no way my vanity will let me avoid rising to the challenge, no way I would decline contributing to this book…but knowing this as my personal dilemma: the risk of exposure of a place inside myself—a place I have found virtually unbearable… a place I have virtually given my life to protect.”
“When I met Jerry, I was in the first month of my first clinical job, armed with my degree and with all of the accompanying mixtures of zeal and anxiety. There was Jerry. Transferred to the local state hospital’s adolescent unit because his family’s funds had run out (after 9 months of psychoanalysis and private hospitalization), Jerry was as crazy at that point as he had been 9 months before. I had known his analyst, so I knew a bit of his history.”
“In my youthful mind, if one of the best analysts in town was giving up, I was already expiated from whatever penalties of failure might ensue and from the awesome demands of Knowing-What-I-Am-Doing.
Jerry and I did well. Then one day the hospital decided to discharge him, prematurely in my judgment. I sent him to what I considered to be the best mental health center in town and tried to tell myself something to make the uneasiness a little easier in my hither-to-relied-on gut.”
“My own therapist comes in, tries to look like a doctor, takes my pulse. <Are you depressed?> he says. I reply, <I’m too sick to be depressed. Come back in a few days and I might have a depression for you.>”
“We had lost our connection after my discharge. I had referred him to the best therapist I knew in community out patient mental health clinics. He was re-hospitalized. I vehemently protested when hospital policy dictated that he not be admitted to my unit simply because of having had one more birthday since his discharge [ultrapassou o limite de idade de sua clínica]. I might have conquered death, but I was not going to have an effect on the monolithic mental ill-health system. He went to the adult unit and killed himself while out on pass.”
“Exposure, expression, mistake, all are cyclical. My exposure is beginning to sound like my salvation. That which I fear most seems to serve my best interests most powerfully.”
“I dodge and twist and evade.”
“Before antibiotics, treatment of gonorrhea in the female usually consisted of months of hospital bed-rest. The Green Girls were locked in a big ward on top of the hospital in the middle of the East River. It was my job to try to keep them from becoming overly excited in order to prevent flaring up of the infection that had gotten them arrested and imprisoned.
It was a strange flip for a religious country boy to end up dealing with Broadway chorus girls. They wanted to have their operation by our own gyn department because we used a special incision below the hairline. That way they could go back on the stage and not be laughed at for exposing their surgical scar.”
“I saw this big white polar bear sitting on the bed, and I knew he wasn’t real, but I had to call the nurse because he looked so real.”
“As I learned more about the vivid experiences of psychosis, I rapidly lost my interest in the mechanical carpentry work we call surgery.”
“A patient who was mumbling to himself explained that voices were calling him horrible things and saying that he had intercourse with his mother. I said, ‘That must be very upsetting,’ and he waved me off with, ‘Oh, no, they’ve been doing that for years, and I don’t pay attention anymore’.”
“Later I talked with an 85 year-old man who came in for molesting an 8 year-old girl. When I met the girl, who looked like a professional actress fresh out of Hollywood, it made huge gashes in my fantasy of what life and people were all about.”
“This call of the wild, the agony and ecstasy of schizophrenia, of the whole psychotic world, ballooned inside of me.” “The magic of schizophrenia, that Alice-in-Wonderland quality of spending hour after hour, sometimes all night long, with a patient whose preoccupation with delusions and hallucinations made him as fascinating as yourself, was matched by the mystery world of play therapy.”
“My discovery of Melanie Klein and her beliefs about infant sexuality was like a repetition in depth of my earlier discovery of the psychotic world.” Oh no, not this bitch again, defenestrate her, from the fifth flour, please!
“my first introduction to psychotherapy was by way of the Philadelphia social work school’s form of Rank’s process thinking. I became more and more intrigued by what brings about change. There was an 8 year-old boy who hadn’t said anything since he had whooping cough [coqueluche] at age 2. I spent 6 months seeing that boy once a week while the social worker talked to his mother upstairs. He never said anything to me either, but we threw the football out in the yard. He did listen to me talk about him. I finally gave up and admitted I couldn’t help. He and his mother went away disappointed. I thought I’d had it with psychotherapy until we got a call back 3 weeks later saying he’d started talking.”
“It became more and more clear that medical students were divided into those who didn’t know how to be tender and those who didn’t know how to be tough. How difficult it was to teach either one to have access to the other. I didn’t really know I was merely talking about myself for some years, but I did discover the joys of working with delinquents. That power! I always thought of them as Cadillacs with steering gear problems, whereas the neurotics we saw in the medical school clinic were like old Fords that were only hitting on two cylinders. Looking back, I often wonder how many of the delinquents stole cars just so they could come back and tell me about it.”
“As a matter of fact, for the next 3 or 4 years I bottle fed almost every patient I saw—man, woman, or child; neurotic, psychotic, psychopathic, or alcoholic—and with a high degree of usefulness, if not success. It was only some time later that it dawned on me that it wasn’t the patient who required the technique, but the therapist. I was learning to mother, and once that was developed I couldn’t use the technique anymore.”
“I didn’t even know then that co-therapy was a secret system for learning how to talk about emotional experiences. It allowed you to be able to objectify a subjective experience shared with someone else.”
I eventually left to work in Atlanta, where we discovered in those early days that the baby bottle was a valuable way to induce regression in the service of growth but that fighting was equally valuable. Just as the baby bottles spread from one to another in our staff group of 7, so the fighting moved until we were apt to be involved physically with almost every patient in one way or another. The intimacy of physical contact—of slapping games, of wrestling, and of arm-wrestling—became a part of our discovery of our own toughness.”
“By 1946 we had 3 daughters and 1 son. The problem of trying to be an administrator and a clinician had exteriorized a lot of my immaturity. When the stress in the hospital and medical school got high, I began to precipitate myself into psychosomatic attacks with cold sweats, chills, vomiting, diarrhea, and a half day in bed. Cuddling with my wife resolved this, but I went back into psychotherapy to help develop confidence in preventing it. Living with our own children also convinced Muriel and me that the only <unconditional positive regard> in this world comes from little children.”
“It was clear to us that the reason people work with schizophrenics is that they want to find their own psychotic inner-person, which is known more and more as the right brain—that nonanalytic total-gestalt-organized part of our cortex. We struggled over the schizophrenogenic mother and over whether the father himself can create schizophrenia. All this anteceded systems theory, which made it clear that it takes a family system (and more) to originate such a holocaust.” Quanta inocência, diria Deleuze…
“The craziness that had overlain her arteriosclerosis of the brain had long since faded into the background. She just ate and slept and smiled and went to the bathroom. But the family still loved her and still enjoyed being with her. They had not turned away from her because of her failing health.”
“It seems that the initial therapist is contaminated with all of the usual problems of being a mother: He’s all-forgiving, all-accepting, and minimally demanding. In contrast, when the consultant comes in for the second interview, he turns out to be very much like the father: He is reality-oriented, demanding, intellectual, much less tempted to accept the original complaints or the original presentation, and very much freer to think about what’s being presented in a conceptual, total gestalt manner.”
“The Atlanta clinic was our private world, and the sophisticated world of a psychoanalytic organized group left me with uncertainties, awkwardness, and the temptation to be isolated.”
“The initial phase of working with the family demands a coup d’état, in which the therapist proves his power and his control of the therapeutic process, thus enabling the family to have the courage to change their living pattern. Other concepts, such as the importance of the detumescence of the scapegoat [resolução, desinchação – conotação cancerígena] or surfacing other scapegoats in the family, spreading the anxiety around the family, and the necessity of using paradoxical intention to reverse the axis of responsibility so the family would carry the initiative for their own change, all were picked up from the residents when they were working with families as co-therapists.”
“One of the covert changes that I experienced was my increasing conviction that everybody is schizophrenic. Most of us don’t have the courage to be crazy except in the middle of the night when we’re sound asleep, and we try to forget it before we wake up. I became more and more courageous in my advancing years and tenured role, and I began to use the word with greater nonchalance. During the first 6 months to 1 year, it was quite a shock, but after that it became gradually more and more accepted, at least in my own head.”
“There is being driven crazy, which means that one’s malignant isolationism¹ is brought about by being forced out of one’s family. There is going crazy, which, in the case of falling in love, is a delightful experience, although very frightening. Going crazyalso takes place in the therapeutic setting, where it’s sometimes called transference psychosis, much in the same way we talk of transference neurosis [still two words that can’t make sense]. And then there is acting crazy—the crazy responsiveness of the individual who has once been insane and who, when under stress, returns to that state of being even though he’s not out of control in the same way. He’s like the child who has just learned to walk. If he gets in a hurry, he’ll get down and crawl on his hands and knees, even though it’s slower.”
¹ O que será que quer dizer? Meu caso? Vivendo com 3 idiotas cada vez mais incapazes de me entender e na verdade cada vez mais decorativos (1988-2017), de repente meu corpo se rebela e diz: CHEGA, VOCÊ JÁ SUPORTOU DEMAIS! ACABOU SUA AUTOIMPOSTA EXPIAÇÃO! Mas quer dizer que quem fritava a batata, no fim, eram eles… Consolador!
“the quasicraziness that happens in social groups”
Alex Redmountain (“Despite his name, he is not an American Indian, but, rather improbably, a Jewish-Slavic refugee of World War II.” – Kopp)
“The affliction is self-love, narcissism, a narrowness of vision that places everything outside oneself at the periphery. Though it appears open and seeking, it makes learning very difficult.Stop reinventing the wheel, I was told; I finally did, but since no one told me to stop reinventing the compass, and sextant, and steam engine, I kept on doing that for quite a while.”
“Out on the street, the therapist is like a hooker who’s been thrown out by her pimp. There’s no security, no status. You’re surrounded by a dozen other hustlers, each selling some exotic solution to life’s problems: astrology, card reading, Scientology, revolution, a quickie in the back of the Dodge van parked across the street. Psychotherapy looks like just another fast fix, a way to set the pain aside momentarily or to pretend to an inflated self-importance. And often it is.”
“I am a clinical psychologist, traditionally trained, and I was still doing the usual clinical psychologist things: testing, individual and group therapy, supervision, formal consultation. But I was getting restless, found it hard to stay within the confines of the clinic where I saw my patients. Little by little, mostly by self-invitation, I cultivated a street beat through familiar geography: free schools and open universities, gay people and street people, adolescents of infinite variety and the many species of chicken-hawk who prey on them, alternate enterprises of every ideology imaginable, and a total spectrum of lifestyles. It seemed like a great opportunity for checking out the barriers. It was also a great opportunity for, as we used to say in The Bronx, getting my ass handed to me—as in the sentence, When I hand you your ass, boy, your head is gonna fall so low you’ll be looking up at roach shit [cocô de barata].”
“Basically, I’m a middle-class grown-up with slightly rebellious inclinations; the one time I was impulsive enough to drop out of school, I joined the U.S. Army and was promptly dispatched to die of boredom in Korea. The setting for my street-shrink activities was a deteriorating, exciting, but not especially dangerous or sinful neighborhood in a large Eastern city. It was exciting because of its variety: its residents encompassed all ages and classes, at least 3 races, and 12 ethnic groups; Maoist food <collectives> operated on the same block with 30 year-old Mom and Pop groceries; soul music blared from one record shop speaker while salsa and bomba rhythms leaped out from another around the corner; store-front churches rose from the ashes of revolutionary Trotskyite print shops—and vice versa.”
“Another source was the illusion of being a savior, a reconciliator loved by all. When I walked around the neighborhood, greeting militants and leftover flower children, precinct captains and self-actualization addicts, I imagined myself a combination of country doctor and masterful statesman, healing rifts both psychic and physical as I passed on through. And in the best Lone Ranger silver bullet tradition, I dreamed of encountering evil, overcoming it, and riding off toward the foothills and the setting sun—all within the 30 minutes normally reserved for the radio serials of my youth.
This kind of delusion wreaks havoc with the long-distance running qualities usually required of the psychotherapist. It also helped me suppress some doubts about my own endurance. With every new patient I took on in my public practice, I wondered: Can I really last the journey? As the complexity of every individual unfolded, I worried: It may be just too hard, too long, too draining. What if I want to run off and fast alongside Cesar Chavez [uma espécie de João Pedro Stédile] in the lettuce fields? What if I decide to go to Harvard Business School so I can destroy capitalism from within?”
“I’m there in 20 minutes. Who said that house calls were a thing of the past? Upstairs I can hear crunching and smashing noises. Down in the <parlor> 8 resident runaways and 2 counselors mill about, looking worried, indifferent, scared, sullen—depending on whom you are looking at.” “a monstrous teenage version of an NFL defensive end, 6 foot 6, at least 240 pounds. He is methodically ripping apart the wooden bunks—the bunks that my friend Joe put together over a couple of weeks of unpaid labor, after his unemployment ran out! I am outraged.”
“Sally greets me with a strange, playful look in her sensual eyes. (Whoops, it’s hard to keep lust and hubris clearly separate.) For many reasons, Sally is one of my favorite counselors.”
Shrink é uma gíria suburbana para psicólogo ou psiquiatra.
“God works in mysterious ways, said Sally, having been raised a brimstone Baptist and never quite given it up. I had to agree. I often had the feeling, when I was doing therapy, that anything I said would work: insight, catharsis, epiphanies would follow some inaudible inanity from my mouth. At other times, when I thought I was being wondrous wise, my words fell as flat as a swatted bug. It all has to do with chemistry, or radiation, or smell. Or something. Before I knew that, I sometimes took the calling of therapy very seriously indeed.”
“Because I think it’s just an ego trip. I don’t even call myself a therapist, you
“What do you mean, even you! Who are you, Sigmund Freud?”
“No, but at least I’m not trying to be something I’m not!”
“Aw, fuck you!” she shouts.
“Fuck you!” I yell back.
“All that doctor done was yell at me, tell me I was a whore and would end up a junkie or dead or in prison, and I’d never have kids, or a man, or anything decent at all.”
“As far as I am concerned, the making of a therapist and the making of a centered person are parallel, though not congruent, journeys.”
“First Tale of Lust. I had agreed to see Janet for short-term therapy at her home; she had a 1 year-old daughter, a night job as a waitress, and no one to babysit. I knew there were many caveats against this kind of thing, but I was sure I could handle it.”
“I kept trying to remember why therapists shouldn’t become sexually involved with patients. I found myself perusing, at length, articles that argued an opposing view. Even the reputable Association of Humanistic Psychology, I noted, was sponsoring a panel at its annual meeting: Sexual Relations Between Therapists and Clients.”
“She observed that the tension between us was palpable. I agreed. In fact, it was becoming intolerable. Yes, I said. Well, she wanted to know, what were we going to do about it?”
“I read Albert Ellis [logo acima!] and Martin Shepard, wrote an essay entitled Challenging Some Traditional Preconceptions in Psychotherapy—in which I never mentioned sex.”
“On the 13th day, I received a short note from Janet on the back of an old Valentine card: I’ve discovered that there are more fine lovers around than psychotherapists. Will you be my (one and only) therapist?
Human, all-too-human: After I daydreamed about choking her with a spiked bulldog collar, boiling her in oil, and throwing her out of a dirigible over the most polluted part of the Hudson River, I met with her—in my office. We dealt with it, as the New Yorker cartoon says, by talking about it. We actually went on to do some excellent work together, 50 minutes at a time, 2 days a week, face to face, and no hugging.”
“Second Tale of Lust. Tamara was 16, dark as an Arab princess, radiating ripeness. She was a resident at one of the group foster homes at which I dispensed weekly advice. Whenever she greeted me, she would wrap herself around me like the original seductive serpent, and I would try desperately to keep my cool—without success.
I am seldom drawn to adolescents sexually, or so I like to believe. I like the way they look, I enjoy their narcissism from afar, but I’m not crazy enough to trade a tumble for a prison sentence, not even in fantasy.”
“Tamara, whose house parents I met regularly for case consultation and whose Oedipal problems I knew almost as well as my own”
“I couldn’t take my eyes off her, and I didn’t want to take the rest of me off, either.
Although I danced with many people that night, I found myself dancing with Tamara more than with anyone else: more sensually, more energetically, more proximately. After a few beers, I forgot the age gap between us. After a few more, stalwart drinker [robusto bebedor] that I am, I was carried upstairs by some friends and carefully placed upon an unoccupied mattress [colchonete]. I woke a couple of hours later to find Tamara bending over me, swaying, her hair against my face. I wasn’t very alert, but she seemed completely out of it—drunk and stoned and incoherent.
Without thinking, I pulled her down beside me, touched her, kissed her, felt her responding to me. As I caressed her, she spoke softly at first, and then more insistently. Her mumbling only gradually became comprehensible: Daddy, Daddy, Daddy…
Laying her head against the pillow, I drew away gently. The one short pang inside me yielded to tenderness. I massaged her eyes and brow until she fell asleep.”
“Third Tale of Lust. It was spring, and 5 of my street clients, including one gay male, declared their love-lust for me. I knew all about transference, of course, but I was also feeling very sexual in my new, slimmed-down version.
At my therapy seminar that week, another fledgling therapist like myself spoke of how he enjoyed his patients’ sexual fantasies about him. Our teacher-supervisor looked at him wryly. <Just remember,> he said, <that there are a dozen paunchy, balding, 70 year-old therapists in this town whose patients are madly in love with them. Don’t take too much credit.>
I decided not to, either.”
“Therapist hubris is based on the mutual illusion of patient and therapist that theirs is not a relationship among equals. Thus, it fires the therapist’s infantile yearnings for magical solutions, omnipotence, oceanic love.”
* * *
DE VOLTA AO KOPP (CONCLUSÃO)
“Everything is folly in this world, except to play the fool.”
“The response of embarrassment is not a personal flaw. On the contrary, it is a socially oriented readjustment pattern that acts to reestablish more orderly, adequate behavior. In showing embarrassment, the flustered person (sometimes unwittingly) reveals his responsiveness to the discrepancy between expected and actual performance. This offers the blunderer a chance to get himself together while remaining in consensual accord with the rest of the group. At the same time, perceiving his reaction, his audience is in a position to help him to reestablish his earlier state of unselfconscious ease.”
“I feel less pained and alone in my embarrassment, standing among these other naked therapists.”
“But for those of us who have not been subjected to excessive shaming, failing at something may be experienced as no more than not yet attaining what we might. For others who have too often been made to feel worthless, each failed attempt may create the feeling of being a total failure.”
“It was Erasmus who gave the West the paradox of the Wise Fool. In the literature of the Middle Ages, the Fool had played a minor role. But beginning with Erasmus’ book, In Praise of Folly, the Renaissance Fool stepped forward as a major figure in the humanist vision of man. Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam, the bastard son of an obscure father, emerged as a great humanist who would be courted by princes, popes, and scholars of his age, a man whose Wise Fool would foster men’s self-acceptance for centuries to come.”
“Like Socrates, her only claim to wisdom is that she knows that she knows not.”
“Like all those later Fools, Don Quixote, Huck Finn, Chaplin’s little tramp, and the Marx Brothers, she does not comprehend what is expected of her by society. Like all clowns she is free to walk irreverently through the walls of convention, simply because she does not see that they exist. Often enough, these hollow boundaries collapse before the force of her ignorance.”
“The good judgment of the Wise is sometimes no more than the closed mindedness of those who know better.” I’d say Final Judgement.
“By accepting the Fool in myself, I open my imagination to all the possibilities that I was once too wise to consider.”
“So it is that when I was a young man I hoped to make fewer and fewer mistakes, while in my later life my ambition is to make more. I would sin boldly. Not that I have come to like feeling embarrassed. Not at all! Rather most of the time now it all just seems worth it to me to experience feeling foolish if that is the price of trying new ways of being.”
O palhaço que habita em mim saúda o palhaço que um dia habitará em você.
O homem ocidental se tornou zen para não apertar o botão da bomba; isso pausará sua existência cadavérica nesse mundo além de qualquer previsão legal… Eis o problema. O Último Homem aprendeu com seus erros logo após o penúltimo erro – que infortúnio e que pepino para nós! Se apenas houvesse uma máquina de auto-sepultamento, um suicídio assistido por si mesmo, uma auto-eutanásia no mais redundantemente literal dos zentidos… Ainda estamos impessoais demais diante do nosso instinto vital, não operamos a nossa própria máquina para comandar ações grandiloqüentes deste nível e desse porte! Asia Rise!
“A single individual’s solitary failing is painful, but the shared frailties of all men are ultimately comic. So it is that one stutterer is tragic, but like it or not, three stutterers having an argument is a funny scene.”
“Seriousness is an accident of time. It consists in putting too high a value on time. In eternity there is no time. Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke”Herman Hesse, Steppenwolf
“Out of the Middle East comes the tradition of the Sufi, that mystical/intuitive aspect of Islam that ranges from the whirling trance states of the Dervishes to the teaching stories of that Wise Fool, Nasrudin. The Sufi tales offer the sort of folk wisdom that discloses that out of each situation comes its own remedy. Each mishap is an opportunity to learn if only our imagination is open to reappraising the source of our discomfort.”
“Enjoy yourself, or try to learn—you will annoy someone. If you do not—you will annoy someone.”
“Who is it who’s rejecting whom?… if somebody rejects me…who they think they’re rejecting isn’t me anyway.… By them pushing me away I see them caught in their own paranoia…”Baba Ram
Ser um incompreendido do meu tempo implica que eu mesmo não posso me compreender!
“You don’t decide to give something up. They fall away, that’s the secret of it.”
It’s ok to fail on an impossible mission, right, Tom Cruise?
“Even when I am doing well, or being special, being judged is oppressive, carrying with it as it does the impossible ideal of perfection. How much easier is the freedom to be what I am, ordinary and imperfect as that may be, no more than a natural Fool.”
“To witness my Self without blaming myself is like being a child again, only this time in a safe, warm place under the watchful eyes of loving parents. It is during such moments that I can accept whatever I do as no more than what I must do at that time. It is then that I would no more question the adequacy of what I am doing than I would wonder whether or not my cat knows just how to go about being a cat.”
Guru, If You Meet the Buddha on the Road, Kill Him!, by the same author.
Tradução comentada de trechos de “PLATÓN. Obras Completas (trad. espanhola do grego por Patricio de Azcárate, 1875), Ed. Epicureum (digital)”
Além da tradução ao Português, providenciei notas de rodapé, numeradas, onde achei oportuno abordar pontos polêmicos ou obscuros. Quando a nota for de Azcárate (tradutor) ou de Ana Pérez Vega (editora), um (*) antecederá as aspas.
(*) “Os comentaristas ressaltam que o estilo literário e a composição dramática do diálogo foram deixados em segundo plano na comparação com a obra platônica precoce, dando lugar a definições, classificações e uma linguagem técnica mais áspera, própria de uma exposição didática” – A.P.V.
“SÓCRATES – Filebo diz que o Bem para todos os seres animados consiste na alegria, no prazer, no recreio e em todas as demais coisas deste gênero. Eu sustento, por outro lado, que não é isto, senão que consiste o Bem na sabedoria, na inteligência, na memória e em tudo o que for da mesma natureza. Todas essas coisas, a justa opinião e os raciocínios verdadeiros são, para todos os que os possuem, melhores e mais apreciáveis que o prazer; e são, ao mesmo tempo, mais vantajosos também, seja para seres presentes ou para seres futuros, capazes de praticá-los.”
“SÓCRATES – Que é que resultaria se descobríssemos algum outro meio preferível a estes dois extremos? Não é certo que se descobrirmos nesse terceiro meio mais afinidade com o prazer estaremos, tu e eu, em situação de viver o prazer e a sabedoria simultaneamente, muito embora a vida dirigida aos prazeres exerça, dentro desse terceiro meio, mais influência sobre nós do que aquela voltada exclusivamente à sabedoria?
PROTARCO – Mas é claro que sim, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – Porém, não seria mentira, também, que esse terceiro meio se aproximaria muito mais da sabedoria que a vida dedicada exclusivamente ao culto dos prazeres… Logo, que tal se tratássemos de descobrir, nesta espécie de união, qual fator, se os prazeres ou a sabedoria, prevalece de maneira mais decisiva? Estais de acordo, meus dois bons jovens, que é possível promover este concurso, a fim de saber quem leva a melhor?
PROTARCO – A mim me parece uma proposta justa e exeqüível.
SÓCRATES – E quanto a ti, Filebo?
FILEBO – Creio e crerei sempre que a vitória se encontra sem dúvida do lado do prazer. Não obstante, já que é assim, numa contenda entre mim e tu Protarco poderá servir de juiz.
PROTARCO – Se tu nos delega esse poder (pois não o farei sem o auxílio de Sócrates), fica atento e só escuta. Não terás o direito de negar nem conceder nada a Sócrates. Eu me encarrego de tudo.
FILEBO – Assim está ótimo, fico nesta disputa, em verdade, como mero expectador; e tomo por testemunha a própria deusa do prazer!”
“SÓCRATES – Comecemos, pois, por esta mesma deusa a que se refere Filebo, ninguém menos que Afrodite, que na verdade é apenas um disfarce para seu verdadeiro nome, Prazer.
PROTARCO – Muito bem.
SÓCRATES – Sempre que pronuncio o nome dos deuses, Protarco, sinto um temor, mas não um temor humano, um temor sobre-humano que a tudo ultrapassa, de pronunciar seus nomes em vão: por isso evoco aqui o nome secreto de Afrodite, pois sei que deve ser de seu pleno agrado esse gesto de franqueza. Quanto ao prazer em si mesmo, creio que ele tenha mais de uma forma, sendo necessário apurar suas naturezas. Mas ao falarmos simplesmente em prazer e prazeres, como se o prazer fosse apenas uma palavra e nada mais, como fazem os homens, tomaríamos nosso problema pela coisa mais simples do mundo; mas incorreríamos assim em profundo erro. É preciso aqui pensar em gêneros diferentes de coisas. Sê bastante flexível a fim de que nosso exercício não seja abortado pela impossibilidade de estabelecermos um entendimento em comum. Podemos afirmar que o homem corrompido encontra prazer na libertinagem, e o homem moderado na temperança; que o insensato, cheio de crenças, caprichos, loucuras e esperanças, sente prazer, mas que o sábio também é capaz de senti-lo. (…)
PROTARCO – Concedo, Sócrates, que estes dois tipos de prazeres decorram de origens opostas, mas nem por isto se opõem um ao outro. De resto, como poderia o prazer ser diferente de si mesmo?
SÓCRATES – Então a cor, meu querido, enquanto cor, não difere em nada da cor! Sem embargo, todos sabemos que o preto, além de ser diferente do branco, é-lhe de fato o exato contrário.”
“Tu dizes que todas as coisas agradáveis são boas, e ninguém em seu juízo perfeito deixará de saber distinguir o que é agradável do que não o é; mas sendo a maior parte dos prazeres má, e a minoria boa, como estabelecemos, tu dás, não obstante, a todos os tipos de prazeres, não importando sua origem, o nome de <bons>, por mais que reconheças agora que são dissemelhantes entre si, quando se te interroga com mais apuro. Que qualidade comum vês nos prazeres bons e nos prazeres maus, qualidade comum esta suficiente para reconhecer todos os prazeres sob a alcunha de Bem?”
“Um prazer não difere de outro prazer: são todos semelhantes. E joguem-se fora os exemplos que antes citei! Voltemos a afirmar as coisas que afirmam aqueles homens que são incapazes de discutir qualquer assunto.”
“Não devemos dissimular, caro Protarco, a diferença que há entre meu bem e o teu bem!”
“SÓCRATES – (…) Não há nem pode haver um meio mais precioso para as indagações que este que adoto já há longo tempo; mas confesso que ele vem falhando bastante ultimamente, deixando-me sozinho e perplexo.
PROTARCO – Que meio é este?
SÓCRATES – Não é difícil descrevê-lo ou saber sobre ele; o difícil é segui-lo. Todas as descobertas obtidas até agora, que exigem algum conhecimento técnico, derivam deste mesmo método que vou-te apresentar.
Enquanto permaneço capaz de avaliar, é-me um presente divino. Creio que nos caiu do céu devido ao ato de algum Prometeu, pois emana do fogo sagrado. Os antigos, muito mais valorosos que nós, nos transmitiram a tradição de que todas as coisas às quais se atribui uma existência eterna se compõem de unidades, isto é, de um ou de muitos, e reúnem em sua natureza o finito e o infinito. Já que as coisas são assim, é preciso, na indagação de cada objeto, aspirar sempre à descoberta de uma idéia singular. Efetivamente só pode existir uma idéia para cada existência verdadeira; e uma vez descoberta esta idéia, é preciso examinar se não podemos ainda depurá-la mais, por estarmos diante de um coletivo de coisas existentes, i.e., se não se trata, investigando melhor, de mais de uma idéia, com certas afinidades entre si. Podem ser duas, três, quatro… não importa o número. Das idéias que descobrirmos, vale a pena apurar, de novo e de novo, se estas idéias não abrigam outras idéias em si, ou seja, se elas não passam apenas de imagens de idéias, tendo apenas aparências de unidade. É preciso chegar até o final da depuração, a fim de se descobrir, por fim, se a Idéia mais primitiva seria una, múltipla ou uma infinidade. Veja que não se deve aplicar a uma pluralidade a idéia do infinito, pelo menos não até havermos fixado o número preciso que descreve a quantidade de idéias, maior que 1 e menor que o infinito, necessariamente! Só então é que se pode deixar a cada qual que se encaixe na categoria de <infinito>.¹ Os deuses, como eu disse, nos presentearam com o dom de avaliar, de aprender e nos instruirmos entre nós; mas os sábios de hoje em dia fazem essas coisas como que a esmo, sem método consciente; digamos que eles erram mais do que seria conveniente para uma investigação digna. Ou se demoram demais sobre algo supérfluo ou se demoram de menos em algo fundamental, sem darem por isso. Depois da unidade, estes falsos sábios já passam de repente, sem transição clara, ao infinito, e os números intermediários fogem-lhes de vista. Contudo, estes números intermediários são a chave de nossa discussão, pois encerram a ordem e as leis da dialética, e diferenciam-na das artes que não passam de jogo e disputa não-verdadeira, seja oratória ou retórica ou outro nome qualquer que lhas dêem.”
¹ Podemos estar diante, basicamente, dos parágrafos que iniciam, verdadeiramente, a tradição do Idealismo alemão. Eis o que Azcárate tem a dizer sobre esta passagem: “A unidade é o gênero; o infinito é a coleção dos indivíduos; o número intermediário é o das espécies”. Não sei se mais ajuda ou atrapalha àquele não-familiarizado com o platonismo e a teoria das Idéias! Mas vejamos como poderei “mediar este debate” e traduzir com minhas próprias palavras o teor da longa passagem do discurso de Sócrates: essas considerações, embora não se deva ignorar a repercussão filosófica (metafísica) invisível destas palavras, para um começo de compreensão, não distam muito da estruturação do conhecimento do método científico do Ocidente moderno. Para que algo seja empírico e teorizável, é preciso que se organize num quadro de referências lógicas, enfim, de categorias. Assim o Homem pós-platônico estuda as coisas. Pouco importa, por exemplo, remetendo-nos à Biologia, que haja 7 bilhões de seres humanos na Terra e que não conhecemos todos. Estudamos o Homem pela unidade (gênero Homo sapiens). Não devemos ignorar que o número, por mais quantificável que seja, está sempre sujeito a alterações imediatas, seja pelas mortes ou pelos nascimentos ininterruptos, seja porque no momento somos incapazes de dizer se fora de nosso alcance (planeta Terra, atualmente) não haveria de haver outros homens. Nesse sentido, pode-se chamar a quantidade de homens de infinita, mas isso tampouco prejudica nossa faculdade investigativa. Como usei o homem como exemplo, não posso dividi-lo em sub-espécies, i.e., raças, mas isso (números intermediários) utilizamos sem problemas para os mamíferos, p.ex. Lembrar que poderíamos considerar os homens, mas de uma perspectiva outra que não a biológica, que acabei de eleger: as espécies poderiam ser cada nacionalidade. Continua a haver uma Idéia dentro da outra (homens nascidos em uma nação), mas esta Idéia de nação é concisa o suficiente para se opor à mais abrangente de Humanidade. Cientistas podem debater entre si sobre vários de seus descobrimentos, inúmeros detalhes suscetíveis de controvérsia dentro de seu campo do conhecimento, mas sempre se estabelecem verdades reconhecidas como universais que se tornam o legado das próximas gerações.
“SÓCRATES – A voz, que sai da boca, é uma e ao mesmo tempo infinita em número para todos e para cada um.
PROTARCO – Estou conforme.
SÓCRATES – Não somos sábios por havê-lo afirmado; nem porque reconheçamos as naturezas infinita e una da voz. Mas saber quantos são os elementos distintos de cada uma e quais são estes não seria o objeto da Gramática?¹
PROTARCO – De pleno acordo.
SÓCRATES – O mesmo para a Música.
PROTARCO – Hein?
SÓCRATES – A voz considerada em relação a esta arte é una.
PROTARCO – Ó, sem dúvida.
SÓCRATES – Podemos considerá-la de duas maneiras: uma voz grave e uma voz aguda; e um terceiro tom uniforme. Não é assim?
PROTARCO – Sim.
SÓCRATES – Se não sabes mais que isto, porém, jamais serás hábil em música; e se o ignoras, tanto pior, pois nem mesmo atendes ao pré-requisito mais fundamental para entender esta arte.
PROTARCO – Isso é certo!
SÓCRATES – Mas, querido amigo, só quando tiveres aprendido a conhecer o número dos intervalos da voz – tanto para o som agudo quanto para o grave –, a qualidade e os limites destes intervalos, e os sistemas que deles resultam, é que, tal como os antigos fizeram, irás descobrir e ser capaz de transmitir aos vivos as idéias sobre harmonia; através dos ensinamentos dos antigos compreendemos tanto isso como as propriedades análogas que emanam do movimento dos corpos, que, medidos por números, devem se chamar ritmo e medida. Quando perceberes que deves portar-te desta maneira em todo saber (em tudo que é uno e múltiplo), aí então poderás enfim chamar-te a ti mesmo sábio.”
¹ Atual Lingüística.
“FILEBO – Eu penso da mesma maneira. Mas que significa tudo isto, e aonde quer nos levar Sócrates?”
“Descobrir que a voz é infinita foi a obra de um deus ou de algum homem divino, como se refere no Egito de um certo Tot que foi o primeiro que se apercebeu de que este infinito continha unidades chamadas vogais, distinguindo, então, que era não uma, mas muitas; depois, descobriu outras letras, cuja natureza era distinta das vogais, mas que mesmo assim participavam dos sons, vindo a reconhecer, conforme estudava e refletia, o número destas vozes não-vocálicas, que chamou de consoantes. Distinguiu até uma terceira ordem ou espécie de letras, que são o grupo que hoje chamamos de mudas.¹ Depois, ainda, aperfeiçoou seus conhecimentos e separou uma a uma as letras mudas ou privadas de som; e em seguida fez o mesmo com as vogais e as intermediárias [consoantes], até que, havendo descoberto o número das existentes, deu a todas e a cada uma o nome de elemento. Tot, notando que nenhum homem poderia aprender nenhum desses sons ou letras isoladamente, i.e., que reconhecer que uma implicava ao mesmo tempo em reconhecer todas as outras, imaginou o enlace de uma nova unidade, e ao representar-se isto, deu-lhe o nome Gramática, que então nasceu.”
¹ O lingüista sabe que aqui estamos falando de sílabas ou fonemas, não mais de letras em si, embora esta distinção não importasse no tempo de Sócrates (Gramática antiga). Se refere Sócrates, nesse discurso, a semi-vogais ou semi-consoantes, que há em todos os sistemas lingüísticos.
“PROTARCO – (…) Sócrates, depois de mil rodeios, metestes-nos numa questão que não é nada fácil resolver. (…) Está-me parecendo que Sócrates nos pergunta se o prazer tem espécies ou não, quantas e quais são; e espera de nós a mesma resposta também com relação à sabedoria.
SÓCRATES – Mataste a charada, filho de Cálias!”
“PROTARCO – (…) Havendo-se a discussão empenhado tanto dum lado como do outro, chegamos a ameaçar-te, em tom desafiador e confiante, de não deixar-te arredar o pé e voltar a tua casa antes de que sanasses esta questão! Tu consentiste finalmente, e estás-te dedicando a nós há vários minutos. Agora dizemos como as crianças que não se pode abandonar a meias aquilo que já está bem-desenvolvido, mais perto de terminar do que de haver começado. Portanto, cessa de enrolar-nos, Sócrates, da forma como estás fazendo, e volta a cumprir o combinado!
SÓCRATES – Mas que é que estou a fazer?
PROTARCO – Pões-nos obstáculos atrás de obstáculos e nos suscitas questões e questiúnculas, às quais não podemos dar uma resposta satisfatória sem muita meditação. Porque não imaginamos que o objeto desta conversação seja o reduzir-nos simplesmente a não saber o que dizer! (…) Já que a situação é esta, fala tu! Delibera tu mesmo e fornece-nos a divisão completa dos prazeres e das sabedorias; a menos que possas deixar isto sem exame e ainda assim possas e queiras tomar outro rumo e explicar-nos as coisas de outro modo até chegarmos a uma solução.
SÓCRATES – Depois do que acabo de ouvir, nada de mal posso temer de vossa parte! Esta frase: <a menos que… …queiras> é o que me tranqüiliza, em verdade. E, de resto, me parece que um deus acaba de visitar-me e iluminar-me a memória com certas luzes!”
“SÓCRATES – Examinemos e avaliemos, pois, a vida do prazer e a vida da sabedoria, considerando cada uma à parte.
PROTARCO – Como é?!
SÓCRATES – Façamos de forma que a sabedoria não invada nunca a vida do prazer, e nem o prazer invada jamais a vida da sabedoria. Porque se um dos dois for o Bem, é preciso que não haja absolutamente nada que se mescle, e se um ou outro nos parece carente dalguma coisa, não seria já o verdadeiro Bem que buscamos.”
“SÓCRATES – Consentirias tu, Protarco, em passar o resto de teus dias no gozo dos maiores prazeres?
PROTARCO – Ora, se não!
SÓCRATES – Se nada a ti faltasse, crerias então que tens ainda necessidade dalguma coisa?
PROTARCO – Evidente que não.
SÓCRATES – Examina bem se não terias necessidade de pensar, nem de conceber, nem de raciocinar quando se mostrasse necessário, nem de nada do tipo. Será que nem mesmo precisarias ver?
PROTARCO – Pra quê? Se fruísse para sempre do prazer, já tudo teria!
SÓCRATES – Não é necessário que, vivendo desta maneira, passarias os dias em meio aos maiores prazeres?
PROTARCO – Indubitavelmente.
SÓCRATES – Mas como faltar-te-ia a inteligência, a memória, a ciência, a opinião, estarias privado de toda reflexão, e é uma conseqüência que ignorarias então se sentias prazer ou não.
PROTARCO – Ora, é verdade.
SÓCRATES – Assim como assim, desprovido de memória, decorre daí obrigatoriamente que não poder-te-ias lembrar se já houveras sentido prazer ou não outrora, e que não saberias, portanto, aquilo que sentes no presente imediato. E, ao não possuir qualquer opinião verdadeira, é certo que não crerias em absoluto sentir gozo no instante em que de fato está-lo-ias sentindo! Por estar destituído da razão, serias incapaz, outrossim, de concluir que te regozijarias no futuro. Ou seja: viverias tal qual uma esponja, e não como um homem! Se não como uma esponja, pelo menos como uma espécie de animal marinho que vive encerrado em concha, fechado ao mundo, vá lá. Concordas até este ponto, ou tens algo a dizer sobre em que estado te encontrarias?
PROTARCO – Sócrates, não haveria como formar uma outra idéia melhor.
SÓCRATES – E bem: tal vida é apetecível?
PROTARCO – Sócrates, esta pergunta não faz o menor sentido.”
“SÓCRATES – Será que qualquer um de nós três seria capaz de viver possuindo sabedoria, inteligência, ciência, memória, em que pese não fosse apto para sentir o mínimo prazer, nem dor, nem para experimentar qualquer sentimento correlato?
PROTARCO – Tal vida em nada me invejaria, Sócrates. Nem creio mesmo que fosse possível uma única vida assim entre todos os mortais.
SÓCRATES – E se se juntassem estas duas vidas, Protarco? E se não formassem mais que uma só, amalgamando-se prazer e sabedoria na mesma unha e carne?
PROTARCO – Não haveria ninguém que deixasse de preferir este gênero de vida aos dois extremos que elencaste, Sócrates. Insisto que não seja coisa de preferência de uns ou outros: é um juízo universal, sem exceções.
SÓCRATES – Já podemos, portanto, extrair as conclusões do que acaba de ser dito?
PROTARCO – Sim, meu caro Sócrates. Que dos três gêneros de vida apresentados, dois são insuficientes em si mesmos, e mesmo que o fossem são inapetecíveis para qualquer homem ou ser.”
“SÓCRATES – Já demonstramos suficientemente que a deusa de Filebo não deve ser vista como o Bem em si.
FILEBO – Mas tua inteligência, Sócrates, tampouco poderia ser este Bem, porquanto está sujeita às mesmas objeções…
SÓCRATES – A minha sim, Filebo, talvez tenhas razão… Mas quanto à verdadeira e divina Inteligência julgo eu que seja outra coisa completamente diferente. Na vida mista não se contesta a vitória da inteligência, mas é necessário ainda avaliar que opinião adotaremos com relação ao segundo posto hierárquico. Talvez devamos dizer, cada qual: <a inteligência>, eu; <o prazer>, tu; no caso de se nos perguntar qual é a principal causa da felicidade presente na condição mista. Procedendo assim, ainda que esta causa predileta não seja o Bem em si mesmo, pelo menos vemos cada qual nosso fator favorito como causa primeira. E acerca disso estou mais excitado do que nunca para a pugna contra meu rival Filebo! Sou capaz de jurar que qualquer que seja a coisa que faz dessa vida algo apetecível, a inteligência tem, de qualquer modo, mais afinidade e semelhança com tal coisa que o prazer.Vou ainda mais longe, ousado que estou: o prazer não tem sequer o direito de aspirar ao posto de <vice> nesta eleição, e com bastante probabilidade não ocupará nem sequer o pódio ou o bronze! Mas para que eu o demonstre necessito de vossa complacência e paciência, ainda que temporárias. Ou seja, confiai em minha inteligência, por Zeus!”
“Ó, Protarco! Creio que ainda temos muita estrada pela frente nesta discussão! Neste momento sinto como nossa empreitada é árdua. Porque se aspiramos ao segundo posto, e minha opinião é de que a inteligência o ocupará, é preferível, a essa altura, dadas as circunstâncias, volvermo-nos a outros métodos. Abandonemos por ora a linha de raciocínio precedente.”
“SÓCRATES – Dividamos em duas ou mais partes, p.ex., 3, todos os seres deste universo.
PROTARCO – Como?
SÓCRATES – Repitamos algo do que já tínhamos estabelecido.
PROTARCO – Que coisa?
SÓCRATES – Disséramos, não faz muito, que deus foi quem nos fez conhecer os seres, uns como infinitos, outros como finitos.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) Mas vejo que em breve serei visto como ridículo se continuar empregando estas divisões.
PROTARCO – Ora, Sócrates, não entendo-te tão bem.
SÓCRATES – Parece-me que tenho necessidade de um quarto gênero!
PROTARCO – Qual seria esse?
SÓCRATES – Apura com o pensamento a causa da mescla das duas primeiras espécies: põe-na ao lado das três; eis a quarta.
PROTARCO – Não seria possível, procedendo assim, também um quinto gênero, com o que poderias separar os seres mais a gosto?
SÓCRATES – Ó, sim! Mas neste momento da argumentação não acho conveniente. Em todo caso, se no decorrer de nossa exposição se fizer necessário um quinto, por que não?!
PROTARCO – De acordo.
SÓCRATES – Bem, destas quatro espécies ponhamos 3 à parte; procuremos, em seguida, examinar as duas primeiras, que têm muitas ramificações e divisões; depois compreendamos cada uma sob uma só idéia; e tratemos, finalmente, de descobrir como numa e noutra se dão o Um e o Muito.
PROTARCO – Se te explicas com mais clareza, talvez eu te possa seguir, Sócrates, mas isto no momento é impossível!
SÓCRATES – As duas espécies a que me refiro são a infinita e a finita. Esforçar-me-ei por provar que a infinita é, de certa maneira, múltipla. Quanto à finita, peço que aguarde um juízo, por ora.
PROTARCO – Creio que a espécie finita não fugirá, Sócrates. Temos tempo.”
“SÓCRATES – O mais e o menos, dizíamos, encontram-se sempre no mais quente e no mais frio.
PROTARCO – Com certeza.
SÓCRATES – Por conseguinte, a razão sempre nos faz entender que estas duas coisas não têm fim; e, ao não terem fim, são, por isso, infinitas.
PROTARCO – Agora definiste a coisa com exuberância!
SÓCRATES – Creio que agora fui mais didático, não, Protarco?! Por falar em exuberância e exuberante, eis aí um termo que possui seu oposto em pobre ou escasso, não di-lo-ias? E não dirias que este binômio exuberante-escasso funciona sobre as mesmas bases que o mais e o menos? Em qualquer ponto em que se encontrem, não consentem jamais que a coisa tenha uma quantidade determinada, senão que, passando sempre do mais exuberante ao mais escasso, e reciprocamente, fazem com que nasça o mais e o menos, obrigando o quantum a desaparecer. Com efeito, como já dissemos, caso essas classificações de extremo a extremo acerca de uma coisa não fizessem desaparecer o <quanto?>, deixando-o ocupar o lugar do mais e do menos, do exuberante e do pobre, sendo um intermediário polimórfico, estas coisas mesmas correriam o risco de desaparecer, pois já não faria sentido falar em exuberância, em escassez, em quente, em frio ou em algo que fosse mais e em algo que fosse menos. Ficaria tudo embaralhado, afinal um número nada é, ou pelo menos não pode ser tudo em simultâneo! Porque se se admite o quantum tem-se que a coisa não é mais quente ou mais fria, porque o mais quente cresce indefinidamente, não havendo fenômeno que o desminta; coisa igual acontece com o mais frio. Essas escalas ou retas são infinitas e inserem as coisas em transições sem começo nem final. Mas um ponto fixo será sempre um ponto fixo, não concordas? Desde que cesse o movimento, aí tens alguma propriedade bem-definida no lugar de um quantum. Convimos, portanto, que o mais quente e o mais frio são infinitos.”
“Parece que faremos melhor se abrangermos na categoria do finito o que não admite essas qualidades mas sim suas contrárias, ou seja, em primeiro lugar o igual e a igualdade; em seguida o dobro; repara que sempre que tivermos um número, poderemos equivalê-lo à metade de outro número, por exemplo.”
“SÓCRATES – Como é que representaremos a terceira espécie que resulta das duas anteriores?
PROTARCO – Aguardo tua lição, Sócrates, pois estou no escuro quanto a isso.
SÓCRATES – Não, não serei eu, Protarco, será um deus, se algum se digna a ouvir minhas súplicas!
PROTARCO – Suplica, então; e medita no problema.
SÓCRATES – Medito, medito… E me parece, caro Protarco… que alguma divindade nos foi favorável em nossos rogos!”
“Entendo a espécie do igual, do dobro, como aquilo que faz cessar a inimizade entre contrários, produzindo entre eles a proporção e o acordo, numericamente representáveis.”
“SÓCRATES – Tu opinas que limitar o prazer é destruí-lo, e eu sustento, pelo contrário, que limitar o prazer é conservá-lo!
PROTARCO – Nisso não mentes, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – Expliquei as 3 primeiras espécies. Até agora, compreendeste minhas palavras.
PROTARCO – Sim, creio que compreendi, a maior parte. Distingues, na natureza das coisas, uma espécie que é o infinito; uma segunda espécie, que é o finito; porém, Sócrates, com respeito a essa terceira, não concebo muito bem como a defines em tua cabeça.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) Compreendo numa terceira espécie tudo aquilo que é produzido pela mescla das duas primeiras, e que a medida que acompanha o finito produz as condições para a geração da essência da coisa.(*)
PROTARCO – Positivo.
SÓCRATES – Mas para além destes 3 gêneros, é preciso ver qual é aquele que eu disse ser o 4o. Façamos juntos esta apuração!”
(*) “Pela geração da essência, Platão entende neste caso a transição rumo a existência física do objeto.” – P.A. – Modo análogo de dizer: o mundo observável está contido entre as fronteiras inexpugnáveis e apenas inferíveis do finito e do infinito.
“O que produz não precede sempre, por sua natureza; e o que é produzido não vem sempre depois, sendo considerado efeito?
Disso advém que são duas coisas e não uma só; causa-e-efeito (o que causa e o que obedece à causa em seu trânsito rumo à existência).
Porém, as coisas produzidas e as coisas que produzem geram, por assim dizer, 3 espécies de ser.
Digamos, então, que a causa produtora de todos esses seres constitui uma 4ª espécie, e que está suficientemente demonstrado que ela difere das outras 3.”
“Portanto, vai esta suma: a primeira espécie é o infinito; a segunda, o finito; a terceira, a essência,¹ que é produzida pela mescla das duas primeiras; a quarta é a causa mesma dessa mescla e produção.²”
¹ O “fenômeno” ou “aparência” na linguagem técnica de hoje. A existência em si, poder-se-ia da mesma forma dizer, já que a <essência> do texto é um conceito bastante ardiloso, quase antagônico ao que Platão quer de fato expressar.
² O protótipo ideal ou Deus.
“SÓCRATES – E tua pura vida de prazer, Filebo, em qual espécie está situada?
O prazer e a dor têm limites, ou são das coisas suscetíveis do mais e do menos?
FILEBO – São da segunda espécie, são infinitas, Sócrates. Porque o prazer não seria o soberano bem se por sua própria natureza não fosse infinito em número e em magnitude.
SÓCRATES – E portanto a dor não seria o soberano mal. Por isso é preciso contemplar as coisas de um outro ângulo, saindo da espécie do infinito, a fim de descobrirmos quê é que comunica ao prazer uma parte do bem. Conviríamos acaso que esta coisa emanasse da própria espécie do infinito? Ora, que o prazer nela esteja, se fazeis tanta questão! Mas ainda persistiria o seguinte problema: em que classe estão a sabedoria, a ciência, a inteligência, meus queridos Protarco e Filebo? Não sejamos ímpios! Parece-me que corremos grandes riscos ao ensaiar uma resposta para esta última pergunta.
FILEBO – Ó Sócrates! Será que não superestimas tua deusa?”
“Diremos, Protarco, que um poder, desprovido de razão, temerário e que obra ao acaso, governa todas as coisas que formam o que chamamos universo? Ou, ao contrário, há, como disseram os antigos, uma inteligência, uma sabedoria admirável, que preside o governo do mundo?”
“Com relação à natureza dos corpos de todos os animais, vemos que o fogo, a água, o ar e a terra, como dizem os velhos marinheiros, entram em sua composição.”
“SÓCRATES – Não temos mais que uma pequena e desprezível parte de cada um, que não é pura de nenhuma maneira, de modo que a força que esta parte desemboca em nós não responde satisfatoriamente a sua natureza original. Tomemos um elemento em particular, com seus atributos derivados, e apliquemo-lo a todos os demais. Por exemplo, há fogo em nós, e o há, por igual, no universo.
PROTARCO – Sem dúvida assim o é.
SÓCRATES – O fogo que nós temos, não seria diminuto em quantidade, ao grau da debilidade e do desprezível, ao passo que o fogo do universo não é admirável em quantidade, beleza e força?
PROTARCO – Incontestavelmente.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) Não é à reunião de todos os elementos que acabo de elencar que demos o nome de corpos?
PROTARCO – Exato.
SÓCRATES – Vê, pois, que o mesmo sucede com aquilo que chamamos de universo, porque, compondo-se este dos mesmos elementos, é o universo, por analogia, também um corpo.
PROTARCO – Disseste muito bem.”
“SÓCRATES – Mas como? Não diremos que nosso corpo tem uma alma?
PROTARCO – É claro que diremos!
SÓCRATES – De onde a tiraste, querido Protarco, se o próprio corpo do universo não é animado, sendo que ele tem tudo que nossos corpos têm, e em ainda maior abundância?
E tudo isso, meu caro Protarco, porque não reparáramos até aqui que desses quatro gêneros, o finito, o infinito, o misto e a causa, este quarto e último, existindo em tudo, é que nos concede uma alma, que sustenta os corpos, que, quando enfermo, adoece a saúde, e que se combina de mil maneiras a fim de criar milhares de milhares de objetos, recebendo o nome de sabedoria absoluta e universal! Este quarto gênero está sempre presente sob uma infinda variedade de formas; o gênero mais belo e excelente se encontra na extensa região dos céus, onde sem dúvida tudo o que há são os mesmos elementos que nos constituem, conquanto em muito maior proporção, dispondo de beleza incomparável e de uma pureza sem igual.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) neste universo há muito de infinito e uma quantidade suficiente de finito, mas todos são governados por uma causa, que nada tem de desprezível ou avara, pois que ajusta e ordena os anos, as estações, os meses, e merece com razão o nome de sabedoria ou inteligência.
PROTARCO – Ó Sócrates, tens toda a razão do mundo!
SÓCRATES – Mas não pode haver sabedoria e inteligência ali onde não há alma!
PROTARCO – Isso é verdade.
SÓCRATES – (…) Na natureza de Zeus, enquanto causa, há uma alma real, uma inteligência real, e na natureza dos outros deuses há muitas belas qualidades, pelo menos uma das quais cada deus gosta que se lhe atribua em especial.”
“Algumas vezes o estilo festivo é uma forma de levar adiante as indagações mais sérias.”
“SÓCRATES – A fome, p.ex., é uma dissolução e uma dor.
PROTARCO – Sim.
SÓCRATES – Comer, ao contrário, é uma repleção e um prazer.
PROTARCO – De acordo.
SÓCRATES – A sede é, de novo, dor e dissolução. Mas a qualidade do úmido, que preenche o que seca, origina um prazer. O mesmo pode ser dito da sensação de um calor excessivo e que seja anti-natural, causando segregação, dor, enfim; o restabelecimento do estado normal e o refrigério do corpo, neste caso, é encarado como um prazer.
O frio, que enregela o úmido presente no animal até o ponto de ser contra a natureza, quando excessivo, é considerado dolorido; os humores, cada um seguindo seu curso, quando em conformidade com a natureza, equivalem à sensação do prazer. (…) quando o animal se corrompe, a corrupção é uma dor; já o retrocesso de cada coisa a sua constituição primeva é um prazer.”
“Eis um terceiro estado, diferente do prazer e da dor. Neste ponto é necessário um esforço intelectivo para me acompanhar. Sem compreender este estado, não resolveremos esta nossa questão. Mas continuo apenas com tua bênção.
Sabes que nada impede que viva desta maneira aquele que assumiu para si o estilo de vida do sábio?”
“PROTARCO – Mas Sócrates, se estás correto isso seria indício de que os deuses não estariam sujeitos quer à alegria quer à tristeza.”
“SÓCRATES – Parece-me que é preciso explicar antes o que é a memória, e antes da memória o que é a sensação, se é que pretendemos levar isso às últimas conseqüências.
PROTARCO – Não te entendo.
SÓCRATES – Dá por estabelecido, amigo, que entre as afeições que nosso corpo experimenta de ordinário algumas se estendem ao corpo sem tocar a alma, não impingindo-lhe nenhum sentimento; outras afeições são transmitidas do corpo à alma, e produzem uma espécie de comoção, que pode ser caracterizada como singular, pois que o corpo a interpreta duma maneira, a alma doutra, ainda que reste algo que seja comum às duas instâncias.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) o esquecimento é a perda da memória, e no caso presente nem há que se falar propriamente de memória; seria um absurdo dizer que se pode perder aquilo que sequer existe, nem existiu jamais, não pões-te de acordo?
PROTARCO – E como não, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – Modifica, pois, os termos um pouquinho.
PROTARCO – Ã?
SÓCRATES – Em vez de dizer que quando a alma não sente as comoções de que padece o corpo e estas comoções lhe escapam por completo há esquecimento, melhor seria dizer que há insensibilidade.
PROTARCO – Ah, agora está claro.
SÓCRATES – Mas nota que quando a afecção ou afeição é comum à alma e ao corpo, e ambos sentem-se comovidos, não te enganarás se chamares a este movimento de sensação.
PROTARCO – Continua, Sócrates, pois sigo de acordo.
SÓCRATES – Mas se se diz que a memória é a conservação da sensação, tem-se aqui uma boa definição, a meu ver.
PROTARCO – A meu ver também é uma boa definição.
SÓCRATES – Não dizíamos que a reminiscência é diferente da memória?
PROTARCO – Quem sabe…
SÓCRATES – Não consiste essa diferença no seguinte–
PROTARCO – No quê??
SÓCRATES – –que quando a alma, em condições de isolamento e julgamento equilibrado, afastada do corpo, entregue, por assim dizer, somente a si mesma, recorda o que experimentara noutro tempo, a isto chamamos reminiscência. Alguma objeção?¹
PROTARCO – De modo algum.
SÓCRATES – E quando, tendo perdido a recordação, seja de uma sensação, seja de um conhecimento, reprodu-lo em si própria, chamamos este processo reminiscência e memória, isto é, toda memória é uma reminiscência, mas jamais o contrário.”
¹ A memória diz respeito principalmente à vida fenomênica do sujeito, diria um filósofo contemporâneo. A reminiscência ajuda a explicar e fundamentar lembranças atávicas da alma, i.e., coisas vivenciadas pelo Ser antes de ser o eu atual, única explicação possível, no platonismo, para a capacidade que se tem, na vida fenomênica, de se chegar à Verdade e à Idéia das coisas. Há um quê de misticismo, por um lado, que associa Platão à Pitágoras, mas, no fundo, esta é a base da fenomenologia ocidental mais aplicada, lógica e abstrata, que não dá lugar ao inconsiderado (sobrenatural). Nossa essência, nosso Ser, diria um Heidegger, dependem desta discriminação aparentemente tão inocente entre uma simples memória e uma autêntica reminiscência.
“PROTARCO – Examinemos então o desejo, como tu pedes, pois nisto nada perderemos, tendo em vista o fim que temos.
SÓCRATES – Sim, Protarco: ao encontrarmos o que tanto buscamos, desaparecerão imediatamente nossas dúvidas acerca de todos estes objetos, e parecerá que ganhamos tempo, ao invés de perdê-lo!
PROTARCO – Tua réplica é a mais justa de todas, mas de pouco adianta nos determos aqui com belas palavras, Sócrates.”
“SÓCRATES – Que há de comum entre afecções tão diferentes, a ponto de denominá-las por uma mesma palavra?
PROTARCO – Por Zeus! Se eu soubesse, talvez não estivéssemos enredados em todo este imbróglio, Sócrates… É preciso, não obstante, achar algo que dizer.
SÓCRATES – Nada melhor que o ponto de partida ser o aqui e o agora.
PROTARCO – Explica isso melhor.
SÓCRATES – Não se diz, de ordinário, que tem-se sede?
PROTARCO – Ora, sim.
SÓCRATES – Ter sede, não é dar-se conta de um vazio em si?
PROTARCO – Decerto.
SÓCRATES – A sede não é um desejo?
PROTARCO – Sim, um desejo de bebida.
SÓCRATES – De bebida, ou de ver-se saciado pela bebida?
PROTARCO – Mais exatamente isto; ver-se saciado.
SÓCRATES – Então posso concluir que deseja-se o contrário daquilo que é? De maneira que quem sente-se vazio quer-se saciar.
PROTARCO – Permito-te esta conclusão.
SÓCRATES – E é possível que um homem que se encontra afetado por este vazio, pela primeira vez em sua vida chegue – seja através da sensação, seja através da memória – a preencher este vazio com algo imaginário e inaudito?
PROTARCO – Mas como poderia suceder tal loucura, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – Todo homem que deseja, não deseja alguma coisa? É o que se diz.
PROTARCO – Conforme…
SÓCRATES – Não deseja o que ele experimenta, porque ele tem sede; a sede é um vazio e deseja suprimi-lo. Com efeito, seria contraditório dizer que ele experimenta algo e tem desejo desse algo ao mesmo tempo.
PROTARCO – Agora que o disseste…
SÓCRATES – É preciso que aquele que sente sede chegue a uma repleção exterior ou então a satisfaça com seu próprio ser.
PROTARCO – Entendo-te a meias, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – Bem, posso-te adiantar que é impossível que com o corpo o corpo livre-se da sede, posto que é o corpo que se encontra de algum modo esvaziado.
PROTARCO – Claro…
SÓCRATES – Resta, portanto, que a alma chegue à repleção, e isto só se poderia dar mediante a memória!
PROTARCO – Isto é claro como a luz.
SÓCRATES – Por qual outro método este homem haveria de consegui-lo?
PROTARCO – Sou incapaz de conceber qualquer outro.
SÓCRATES – Esta reflexão nos faz ver, Protarco, que não há desejo do corpo.
PROTARCO – ???
SÓCRATES – O esforço de todo organismo animal se dirige sempre no sentido de atingir o estado contrário ao que experimenta no presente.
Este apetite, que arrasta dum extremo a outro através da experiência (sensações), prova que há nele uma memória congênita das coisas opostas às paixões do corpo, não vês?
Só pode ser a memória aquilo que leva o animal à realização de seu desejo e, portanto, todo desejo tem sua sede na alma, com o perdão do trocadilho.¹ A alma comanda o animal.²”
¹ Esta parte da tradução foi inovação minha: ambos conversavam sobre a <sêde> (vazio, dor ou sintomas da desidratação), e agora Sócrates fala da fonte, residência ou causa deste desejo de matar a sede (<séde>). A grafia das palavras, diferente da pronúncia, em nada difere.
² O animal deve ser entendido aqui como o homem, sob pena de comprometer-se todo o raciocínio caso estendamos esta compreensão às bestas ou criaturas irracionais, o <animal> no sentido da Biologia.
“SÓCRATES – (…) Parece-me que chegamos ao ponto em que descobrimos uma espécie particular de vida.
PROTARCO – Que vida?!
SÓCRATES – Descobrimos esta vida que consiste no esvaziamento e na repleção; ou seja, tudo aquilo que se relaciona à conservação e à alteração do estado atual. É fácil notar que podemos sentir dor ou prazer independentemente do estado em que nos encontramos, não sendo o <vazio> ou o <cheio> o incômodo em si.
PROTARCO – Começo a entender onde queres chegar…
SÓCRATES – Que sucede quando nos achamos a meio caminho entre estas duas situações extremas de carência e de consumação?
PROTARCO – Agora explica isso de <meio caminho>.
SÓCRATES – Meio caminho ou ponto médio. Quando se sente dor em virtude da forma como o corpo está sendo afetado por algo, recordando-se sensações agradáveis, parece que a dor já cessa um pouco. Podes conceber que um homem sedento console-se de achar água, mesmo não achando, e consiga enganar a sede? Quem tem esperança de preencher o vazio, já não está num ponto médio entre a mais terrível sede e a realização plena do desejo de não ter mais sede?
E pensa que há algum ponto em que o homem é pura alegria? Ou pura dor?
PROTARCO – Refletindo bastante, penso que não. (…)
SÓCRATES – (…) Compreendes então que há um <duplo> invisível deste vazio ou falta de vazio, certo? Tanto quanto podemos conceber um homem esperançoso em preencher-se, há também o homem desesperado que não vê como poderia escapar de um agravamento desta sede.
PROTARCO – Consinto.”
“SÓCRATES – Não seria estranho dizer que o homem e os demais animais experimentam simultaneamente dor e alegria.”
“Devemos renunciar absolutamente a todos os rodeios e discussões que ainda nos separam de nosso objetivo final.”
“Não é certo que aquele que forma uma opinião, seja fundada ou infundada, nem pela chance de estar errado deixa por isso de formar uma opinião?
Igualmente, não é evidente que aquele que goza uma alegria, haja ou não motivo para regozijar-se, nem por isso deixa de regozijar-se realmente?
Como seria possível que estejamos sujeitos a ter opiniões, tanto verdadeiras quanto falsas, e que nossos prazeres sejam sempre verdadeiros, como alegas, enquanto que os atos de formar uma opinião e regozijar-se existem de forma análoga e espelhada?”
“SÓCRATES – Neste caso, nossa alma é parecida com um livro.
PROTARCO – Em que particularidade?
SÓCRATES – A memória e os sentidos, concorrendo ao mesmo objeto com as afecções que deles dependem, inscrevem, já que usei esta metáfora, em nossas almas, certos silogismos ou raciocínios, e quando aparece ali escrita esta verdade, nasce em todos nós uma opinião verdadeira derivada de raciocínios verdadeiros, bem como opiniões falsificadas, quando nosso secretário interior escreveu com base em opiniões fajutas, i.e., silogismos.”
“SÓCRATES – As grandes e súbitas mudanças excitam-nos sentimentos de dor e prazer; já as mudanças mais matizadas ou insignificantes são incapazes de nos propiciar dor ou prazer.
Mas eis aí que o gênero de vida de que tratávamos faz sua reaparição!
Estou falando daquele gênero de vida normalmente isento da dor e do prazer.
admitamos 3 classes de vida: uma de prazer, outra de dor, e uma terceira que não é de um nem do outro. Que opinas sobre isso?
PROTARCO – Penso, como tu, que é preciso admitir estas 3 classes de vida.
SÓCRATES – Portanto, estar isento de dor nunca pode ser o mesmo que sentir prazer.
PROTARCO – Como?”
“SÓCRATES – Vejo, ó Protarco, que tu não conheces os inimigos de Filebo!
PROTARCO – E quem seriam?
SÓCRATES – Homens que passam por mui sábios sobre as coisas da natureza, capazes de sustentar, p.ex., que não há absolutamente prazer.(*)
PROTARCO – Hein?!
SÓCRATES – É isso mesmo que ouviste! Dizem que aquilo que os partidários de Filebo denominam prazer nada é senão a carência da dor.
PROTARCO – Mas e quanto a ti, Sócrates? Aconselhas-nos a seguir seu ditame?
SÓCRATES – De maneira alguma! Mas quero que os ouçamos como se fossem adivinhos ou oniscientes. Mortais assim, se existissem, ao dar-se-lhes crédito, seríamos obrigados a reconhecer que odiariam ou desprezariam o que chamamos nós de prazer. Aquilo que lhes agrada, tomam por ilusão, não algo existente. É dessa perspectiva que desejo que mireis o problema, a fim de ganharmos em conhecimento, ainda que eles não estejam certos.
(*) “Referência a Antístenes e os Cínicos.” – P.A.
“Se desejássemos conhecer a natureza do que quer que seja, p.ex., da rigidez, não seria viável conhecê-la melhor fixando-nos no que há de mais rígido ao invés de entretermo-nos nas coisas mais ou menos rígidas? Anda Protarco, é necessário dar satisfação a estes homens cavilosos, como também a mim.”
“Quem se encontra atormentado pela febre e outras enfermidades que-tais não sente mais sede, frio e outras afecções que o comum? Não se encontram com mais necessidades, e quando as satisfazem não experimentam certo grau de prazer? Deixaremos de confessar estas verdades?”
“Não percebes na vida corrompida, senão um maior número, prazeres maiores e mais consideráveis, havendo sempre a necessidade de veemência e vivacidade por parte dessas pessoas, pelo menos muito mais do que na vida de uma pessoa moderada?”
“SÓCRATES – Acaso ignoras que na comédia nossa alma se vê afetada por uma mescla de dor e prazer?
PROTARCO – Ainda não percebo muito bem esta característica.
SÓCRATES – Confesso, Protarco, que não estás de todo fora do tom: é um tipo de sentimento difícil de distinguir a princípio.
PROTARCO – Sinto que é.
SÓCRATES – Encaras como dor da alma isso que chamam de inveja?
PROTARCO – Sim.
SÓCRATES – E no entanto, vemos que o invejoso se regozija com o mal do próximo.
PROTARCO – E não é pouco!”
“PROTARCO – Quais são os prazeres, Sócrates, que com mais razão podemos tomar por verdadeiros?
SÓCRATES – São aqueles que têm por objeto as cores belas e as belas figuras, a maior parte dos que nascem dos odores e sons, e todos aqueles, em suma, cuja privação não é sensível, nem dolorosa, e cujo gozo vai acompanhado de uma sensação agradável, sem mescla alguma de dor.¹”
¹ Platão acaba de resumir os fundamentos da ciência da Estética.
“Por <beleza das figuras> não entendo o que muitos poderão imaginar: corpos formosos, pinturas de qualidade; entendo aquilo que é reto e circular, plano, sólido, obras desse gênero, trabalhadas em suas singularidades. Falo dessas figuras que poderíamos reproduzir com régua e esquadro. Será que penetras meu pensamento? A meu ver essas figuras não são como as outras, belas por comparação (relativamente belas), mas sempre e absolutamente belas, em si mesmas, naturalmente belas. (…) Outro tanto digo eu das belas cores que possuem uma beleza correlata à anterior, e de todos os prazeres que guardam relação com o que eu descrevi.
Quanto aos sons, digo que os fluidos e nítidos, componentes de uma melodia pura, são mais do que relativamente belos, são belos por si mesmos.
Já a espécie de prazer que resulta dos odores tem algo de menos divino, reconheço-o; mas os prazeres em que não se mescla nenhuma dor por necessidade devem ser classificados no gênero oposto ao dos prazeres de que falamos antes, por isso não posso me contradizer. Em suma, amigo Protarco, chegamos à definição de dois tipos diferentes de prazeres.
Não nos esqueçamos também dos prazeres que acompanham a ciência, se é que pressupomos que há qualquer coisa de gratuito no ato de conhecer, nada ligado ao desejo ou compulsão de aprender visando a outro fim, e que essa sede de ciência espontânea e como fim em si não causa qualquer tipo de dor.
Doeria na alma se, plena de conhecimento, chegasse a perder alguns por esquecimento?
Como bem concluíste, enquanto o conhecedor não refletir sobre isso, abandonando a naturalidade da questão, ele jamais sentirá qualquer dor ou pesar, enquanto não lembrar que esqueceu.
Resulta de tudo isso que os prazeres da ciência são puros e despidos de dor, e que não estão destinados a todo mundo.
Agora que já separamos com segurança os prazeres puros daqueles que não o são, acrescentemos que os prazeres violentos são desmedidos, e que os demais são comedidos. Afirmemos também que aqueles, maiores e mais fortes, fazendo-se sentir, não importa, uma ou múltiplas vezes, fato é que pertencem à classe do infinito, que atua com mais ou menos vivacidade sobre corpo e alma; estes (os comedidos) são da espécie finita.”
“SÓCRATES – Como e em que consiste a pureza da brancura? Na magnitude e na quantidade? Ou no aparecer sem mescla, sem vestígio algum de outras cores?
PROTARCO – É evidente que na última característica, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – Muito bem! Não diremos, pois, que esta brancura é a mais verdadeira e ao mesmo tempo a mais bela de todas as brancuras, e não a que é maior em quantidade nem em tamanho?”
“Todo prazer que não carrega consigo uma dor, ainda que pequena e desprezível, é mais agradável, mais autêntico e mais belo que aqueles que a carregam, ainda que alguns prazeres que carreguem dores apareçam como mais vivos, numerosos e majestosos.”
“SÓCRATES – Não ouvimos dizerem com contumácia que o prazer está sempre no caminho da gestação e nunca exatamente no estado da existência? Muitos oradores dos mais hábeis já tentaram demonstrá-lo. Nada mais poderíamos fazer senão agradecê-los!
PROTARCO – Por quê, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – Não há duas classes de coisas, uma das que existem por si mesmas e outra das que aspiram sem cessar a ser outra coisa?” “Uma é naturalmente nobre, e a outra inferior àquela em dignidade.”
“jovens formosos que tinham por amantes a homens cheios de valor.”
“PROTARCO – Falaste algumas coisas que me soaram obscuras, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – Não é bom que façamos mil recapitulações e digressões, assim não acabamos nunca. Mas, Protarco, eu não consigo evitar: a própria discussão parece ter gosto em me entorpecer! Ela quer nos fazer entender que, duas coisas consideradas, uma é sempre meio e a outra fim.
PROTARCO – Mesmo que repitas uma e duas vezes, isso não me entra na cabeça.”
“SÓCRATES – Partamos de outro ponto então. Consideremos duas coisas novas…
PROTARCO – Quais?
SÓCRATES – Uma, o fenômeno; a outra, o ser.
PROTARCO – Pois bem, isto está conforme: o ser e o fenômeno.
SÓCRATES – Muito bem. Qual das duas diremos que foi feita para a outra? O fenômeno existe para a existência, ou a existência é que é causa do fenômeno?
PROTARCO – Me perguntas realmente isso: se a existência existe porque existe a aparência?
SÓCRATES – Exato!
PROTARCO – Que diabo de pergunta é essa?
SÓCRATES – Protarco, a construção dos navios se faz em nome dos navios, ou os navios em nome da construção? (…)
PROTARCO – Por que não te respondes a ti mesmo, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – Não haveria inconveniente nisso, mas não quero falar só!
PROTARCO – Então com prazer…
SÓCRATES – Digo, então, que os ingredientes, os instrumentos, os materiais de todas as coisas servem a fenômenos; e que todo fenômeno serve a tipos de existências; e a totalidade dos fenômenos serve à totalidade da existência, que é o fim último.
PROTARCO – Perfeito.
SÓCRATES – E que, portanto, se o prazer é um fenômeno, é indispensável que seja o meio para alguma existência.
PROTARCO – Convenho totalmente.
SÓCRATES – Mas a coisa que é sempre fim para outra coisa que é sempre o meio, não deve ser esta coisa chamada de Bem? Logo, vemos que as coisas estão em classes diferentes.
PROTARCO – É óbvio.
SÓCRATES – Logo, se o prazer é um fenômeno, não diríamos que está subordinado ao Bem?
PROTARCO – Tens razão.
SÓCRATES – Desta forma, como disse no começo, precisamos ser gratos àqueles que nos fizeram conhecer que o prazer é um fenômeno e que não tem absolutamente existência em si mesmo¹”
¹ Platão volta a falar dos céticos.
“SÓCRATES – Estes homens mesmos se rirão, sem dúvida, daqueles que fazem consistir sua felicidade no fenômeno.
PROTARCO – Mas de que maneira exatamente, e de quem falas?
SÓCRATES – Falo daqueles que, matando a fome e a sede e outras necessidades análogas, satisfazem-se no fenômeno. Está claro que se regozijam do prazer que lhes causa a repleção. Alegam que não gostariam de viver se não estivessem sujeitos à sede, à fome e outras tantas faltas, verificadas mediante sensações.
PROTARCO – Sim, de acordo.
SÓCRATES – Não conviremos todos em que a alteração dum fenômeno é o contrário de sua geração?
PROTARCO – Sim, conviremos.
SÓCRATES – O que elege a vida dos prazeres, elege a geração e a alteração, mas não um terceiro estado no qual não teriam lugar os prazeres, nem a dor, tão-somente a mais pura sabedoria.
PROTARCO – Agora entendo, Sócrates, que é o mais rematado absurdo eleger o prazer como o sumo Bem!”
“SÓCRATES – (…) Não seria igualmente absurdo dizer que quem não experimenta o prazer e a dor é mau durante todo o tempo que sofre, ainda que estejamos falando do homem mais virtuoso do mundo? E não seria disparatado afirmar que quem experimenta o prazer é por esta mesma razão virtuoso, mais virtuoso quão maior for o prazer que experimenta?
PROTARCO – Sócrates, nada mais absurdo e disparatado que isso tudo!”
“SÓCRATES – Não se dividem as ciências em dois ramos, um as artes mecânicas, o outro a educação, seja da alma ou do corpo?
PROTARCO – De acordo.”
“SÓCRATES – Separemos, então, as artes que estão acima das outras.
PROTARCO – Quais seriam, e qual critério utilizaremos?
SÓCRATES – P.ex., se excluirmos dentre as diversas artes as de contar, medir e pesar, restará bem pouca coisa, não crês?
Depois, nada nos resta senão pedir socorro às probabilidades, exercitar os sentidos mediante a experiência e nos submeter a uma certa rotina, valendo-nos do talento para conjeturar, ao que muitos dão o nome de arte, pelo menos quando já se desenvolveu a um grau sublime pela reflexão e pelo trabalho nela desempenhado (aperfeiçoando o talento para conjeturas).
PROTARCO – Dizes algo irrefutável.
SÓCRATES – Não está neste último caso a música, pois que não se calcula sua harmonia, mas avança-se por conjeturas e ao azar, que depois são tornados familiares pelo hábito do tocador? Assim como a parte instrumental desta arte tampouco se submete a uma justa medida ao pôr-se em movimento cada corda, de maneira que na música há muitas coisas desconhecidas e algumas poucas seguras e certas?
PROTARCO – Nada mais verdadeiro.
SÓCRATES – Aplicando o raciocínio, veremos que é também o caso da medicina, da agricultura, da navegação e até da arte militar.
PROTARCO – Ó, sem dúvida!
SÓCRATES – E que, ao contrário, a arquitetura faz uso, a meu entender, de muitas medidas e cálculos, e instrumentos, que lhe dão grande firmeza e rigidez, fazendo-a exata, ou pelo menos mais exata que grande parte das ciências.¹”
¹ Está claro que hoje não pensamos mais assim.
“Sigamos: separaremos as artes em duas ordens. Umas, dependentes da música, são mais imprecisas; outras, dependentes dos princípios arquitetônicos, são mais precisas.
PROTARCO – Assim seja.
SÓCRATES – Coloquemos entre as artes mais exatas aquelas de que primeiro faláramos.
PROTARCO – Se não me engano, falas da aritmética e das suas mais aparentadas.”
“Veja a aritmética: não estamos conformes que há uma vulgar e outra própria dos filósofos?”
“o vulgo faz entrar na mesma conta unidades desiguais, como dois exércitos, dois bois, duas unidades muita pequenas ou muito grandes. Os filósofos, ao contrário, jamais darão ouvidos a quem se nega a admitir que, entre todas as unidades, não há uma unidade que não difira absolutamente em nada de qualquer outra unidade.”
“A arte de calcular e de medir – que empregam os arquitetos e os mercadores –, não difere ela da geometria e dos cálculos racionais dos filósofos? Diremos que é a mesma arte, ou a dividiremos em duas?”
“SÓCRATES – Protarco, compreendes por que entramos neste mérito?
PROTARCO – Talvez…”
“SÓCRATES – Há duas aritméticas e duas geometrias, e dependendo de quais outras múltiplas artes consideremos, por mais que vulgarmente se as compreenda sob um mesmo nome, pode muito bem haver várias artes ou ciências duplas.”
“SÓCRATES – A dialética nos acusará, Protarco, de termos dado a preferência a outra ciência em detrimento dela.
PROTARCO – Que entendes por dialética, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – É a ciência das ciências, que conhece todas as outras ciências. É o conhecimento mais verdadeiro e sem comparação, pois tem por objeto o ser mesmo, aquilo que realmente existe, e cuja natureza é inalterável. Que pensas da dialética, Protarco?
PROTARCO – Não nego, Sócrates, que ouvi muitas vezes Górgias dizer que a arte da persuasão leva vantagem sobre todas as demais. Fica tudo submetido à persuasão do orador, não pela força, mas pela vontade. Em suma, não haveria nada mais excelente. Me sinto desconfortável, portanto: não quero contradizer meu mestre Górgias, nem tampouco a ti, querido.
SÓCRATES – Me parece que no momento de alvejar tua flecha contra mim, vacilaste.
PROTARCO – Se assim o queres, digo que tu podes tratar como bem entender, nesta conversação, o estatuto destas duas ciências.
SÓCRATES – Mas é culpa minha se não entendes o que digo exatamente?
PROTARCO – Como?
SÓCRATES – Não te perguntei, meu querido, qual é a arte ou a ciência que se encontra no topo das outras em termos de importância, excelência e vantagens que possa conceder ao usuário, mas qual é a ciência cujo objeto é o mais claro, exato e verdadeiro, seja ou não de grande utilidade. Eis o que agora buscamos. Se ages com prudência, não cais em desgraça com Górgias, nem tampouco me afrentas.”
“SÓCRATES – (…) quando alguém diz estudar a natureza, já sabes que se ocupa a vida inteira em averiguar as causas, ou seja, como veio a se produzir o universo; pois todo efeito, que se apura agora, provém de determinadas causas. Ou não?
PROTARCO – Mas é claro que sim, Sócrates.
SÓCRATES – O objeto do naturalista não é necessariamente aquilo que existe sempre? O que é, o que foi e o que será?
PROTARCO – Em última instância, é isto mesmo.
SÓCRATES – Podemos dizer que é auto-demonstrável o objeto que procuramos, que nunca existiu, nem existe, nem existirá de forma dessemelhante? Ou bem a única coisa que podemos afirmar, com base na investigação dos fenômenos, seria: nada há que permanece idêntico e estável?!
PROTARCO – O segundo, Sócrates, porque o fenômeno é o meio, mas–
SÓCRATES – …Já sei o que irás dizer! Está claro que se trata de fenômenos, mas como chegar à misteriosa causa, já que este fim é invisível e só vemos o meio?
PROTARCO – Pois creio que ficaremos eternamente no escuro quanto a isso.
SÓCRATES – Portanto, a verdade pura não se encontra na inteligência nem no conhecimento possível sobre os objetos.
PROTARCO – Com efeito.
SÓCRATES – E então é preciso que deixemos de lado tudo isso, tu, eu, Górgias e Filebo: seguindo tão-só a razão, devemos afirmar o que segue…–
PROTARCO – O quê, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – …que a estabilidade, a pureza, a verdade e o que nós chamamos de sinceridade, não se encontram senão no que subsiste eternamente, no mesmo estado, da mesma maneira, sem mescla; e onde mais se encontra de forma menos mesclada, isto é, em segundo lugar? Podemos chegar lá? Creio que todo o demais deve ser rebaixado em nossa hierarquia de valores.
PROTARCO – Concordo plenamente.”
“SÓCRATES – Não são os nomes mais preciosos os da inteligência e sabedoria?
PROTARCO – Parece que sim.”
“SÓCRATES – Sigo uma velha máxima, que nunca é má: Nunca é demais indagar duas, três ou mais vezes, se preciso, sobre o quê é o Bem.
PROTARCO – Convenho, convenho.
SÓCRATES – Em nome de Zeus, muita atenção agora! Vamos recordar como começamos todo este debate, a fim de podermos rematá-lo!
Filebo sustentava que o prazer é o fim legítimo de todos os seres animados e o objeto a que se devem consagrar sem exceção; que o prazer é o supremo Bem e que estas duas palavras, bom e agradável, pertencem, no fim de contas, a uma mesma natureza. Sócrates, ao contrário, sustentava que, como bom e agradável são duas palavras distintas, expressavam igualmente duas coisas de natureza distinta, e que a sabedoria participava mais da condição do Bem que o prazer. Não começamos assim, Protarco?
PROTARCO – Sim, Sócrates, foste verdadeiro.
SÓCRATES – E, dando continuidade: convimos que o ser animado que esteja em possessão plena e integral, ininterrupta, durante toda sua vida, do Bem, não tem ele necessidade de nada mais, porque aquilo já lhe basta. Que dizes?
PROTARCO – Mais uma vez, foste impecável ao rememorar nossos passos.”
“SÓCRATES – Nem o prazer nem a sabedoria são esse Bem perfeito, o bem que apetece a todos, o soberano Bem!
PROTARCO – Agora vejo que não!
SÓCRATES – Destarte, é preciso descobrir o Bem ou em si mesmo ou nalguma imagem, para ver, como já dissemos, a quem devemos adjudicar o segundo posto.”
“Não cabe buscar o bem numa vida sem mescla, pois que ele reside na vida mesclada ou intermediária.”
“SÓCRATES – Seja: Conseguiríamos atingir nosso objeto mesclando toda sorte de prazeres com toda sorte de sabedorias?
PROTARCO – Hm, talvez…
SÓCRATES – Não, este meio não é confiável. Vou te propor um novo método de mesclar as coisas sem tantos riscos.
Há, segundo entendo, alguns prazeres muito mais meritórios que outros; e artes mais exatas que outras.”
“Segue daí que devemos mesclar só as porções mais autênticas de uma e outra parte, e cabe-nos examinar se há uma mescla verossímil o suficiente para que a classifiquemos de vida mais apetecível.”
“SÓCRATES – Será preciso incluir a música, que, conforme vimos, está repleta de conjeturas e de imitação, e carente, por isso mesmo, de pureza?
PROTARCO – Isso me parece necessário, a fim de tornar a vida suportável.
SÓCRATES – Em outras palavras, queres que eu seja um porteiro relaxado e deixe que um tropel de arraias-miúdas arrombe o portão e invada, com todas as ciências e mesclas possíveis e imagináveis?
PROTARCO – Sócrates, não vejo como pode ser um mal que um homem possua em si todas as ciências, contanto que possua as principais.
SÓCRATES – Sigo, então, tua prescrição, e deixo com que todas passem pelo meu portão, para invadirem o jardim poético de Homero.”
“Porém, quanto aos prazeres, ainda resta por decidir: quais classes de prazeres deixaremos entrar impunemente? Só caberão neste jardim os verdadeiros, ou aceitaremos todos sem distinção?”
“A essência do Bem nos escapa novamente! Foi-se refugiar dentro da essência do Belo, porque em todo lugar e por todas as partes a justa medida e a proporção são uma beleza e uma virtude.
Mas não esqueçamos que a verdade tem de entrar com as outras coisas neste mescla.
Portanto, se não podemos abarcar o Bem sob uma só idéia, fá-lo-emos sob 3, a saber: a da Beleza, a da Proporção e a da Verdade. Digamos que, se essas 3 coisas pudessem ser 1 só, formariam assim a causa verdadeira da excelência desta mescla do tipo de vida perfeita e alcançável pelo homem. Se a causa é boa, a mescla só pode ser boa.”
“PROTARCO – (…) o prazer é a coisa mais mentirosa do mundo. Assim se diz por aí. E também que os deuses perdoam todo perjúrio cometido em meio aos prazeres do amor, ou da carne, que passam por ser os mais elevados de todos; isso me faz pensar que os prazeres, tal como as crianças, não têm a menor faísca de sabedoria!”
“o primeiro Bem é a medida, o justo meio, a oportunidade e todas as qualidades semelhantes, que devem ser tomadas como condições imprescindíveis de uma natureza imutável.” “o segundo Bem é a proporção, o belo, o perfeito, o que se basta a si mesmo, e tudo o mais que for deste gênero.” “E aí tens o posto da sabedoria e da inteligência: fazem parte da verdade, como terceiro Bem.”
“Não situaremos em quarto lugar as ciências, as artes, as opiniões justas, que afirmamos pertencer a uma alma só, se está certo dizer que estas coisas têm um laço mais íntimo com o bem e com o prazer?”
“Em quinto lugar colocaremos os prazeres, mas apenas aqueles isentos de dor, chamando-os conhecimentos puros da alma.”
“SÓCRATES – À sexta geração, diz Orfeu, ponde fim a vossos cantos. Me parece que poremos fim também a este discurso com este sexto lugar. Já nada nos resta senão condensar e arredondar tudo o que descobrimos.
PROTARCO – Sem dúvida, Sócrates, não há mais remédio senão pararmos por aqui e finalizarmos com dignidade.
SÓCRATES – Voltemos, então, pela terceira vez, salvo engano, ao mesmo discurso, e demos as graças a Zeus o Conservador.
PROTARCO – Como o efetuarás, Sócrates?
SÓCRATES – Filebo qualificava o prazer perfeito e pleno como o Bem (…)”
“Bem, vimos que nem um nem o outro desses bens inicialmente inferidos por nós dois é suficiente por si mesmo!” “Tendo-se apresentado diate de nós uma terceira forma de bem, superior aos outros dois, nos pareceu, também, que a inteligência tinha com a essência dessa terceira forma mais afinidade (mil vezes mais afinidade!) que o prazer mais gozoso. Mas vimos que o prazer mais puro não ocupa lugar melhor que o quinto em nossa escala de valores. Mas os bois, cavalos e demais bestas, sem exceção, não seriam a refutação do que dissemos? A maior parte dos homens, referindo-se a elas, como dizem os intérpretes do canto dos pássaros, julga que os prazeres são a principal fonte da felicidade da vida, e crê que o instinto das bestas é uma garantia mais segura e verdadeira que os discursos inspirados pela Musa.”
“PROTARCO – Convimos, sem qualquer restrição, Sócrates, que tudo o que disseste é perfeitamente verdadeiro.
“Biographies of gay men and lesbian women discuss their orientation only when unavoidable, as with Oscar Wilde. There have been several encyclopedias and dictionaries of sexuality (beginning with a German one of 1922, the Handbuch der Sexualwissenschaft), but this work is the first to treat homosexuality in all its complexity and variety.”
“all the efforts of church and state over the centuries to obliterate homosexual behavior and its expression in literature, tradition, and subculture have come to naught, if only because the capacity for homoerotic response and homosexual activity is embedded in human nature, and cannot be eradicated by any amount of suffering inflicted upon hapless individuals.”
“The editors are persuaded that the phenomenology of lesbianism and that of male homosexuality have much in common, especially when viewed in the cultural and social context, where massive homophobia has provided a shared setting, if not necessarily an equal duress.”
“Perhaps the most difficult obstacle to a simple focus on <homosexuality> is the growing realization that what has been lumped together under that term since its coinage in 1869 is not a simple, unitary phenomenon. The more one works with data from times and cultures other than contemporary middle-class American and northern European ones, the more one tends to see a multiplicity of homosexualities.”
“The Greeks who institutionalized pederasty and used it for educational ends take a prominent role, as does the Judeo-Christian tradition of sexual restriction and homophobia that prevailed under the church Fathers, Scholasticism, and the Reformers, and – in altered form – during the 20th century under Hitler and Mussolini, Stalin and Castro.”
“He is a tragic hero, being aware of the shortness of his life, and his devoted friendship for Patroclus is one of the major themes of the epic. Later Greek speculation made the two lovers, and also gave Achilles a passion for Troilus. The homoerotic elements in the figure of Achilles are characteristically Hellenic. He is supremely beautiful, kalos as the later vase inscriptions have it; he is ever youthful as well as short-lived, yet he foresees and mourns his own death as he anticipates the grief that it will bring to others. His attachment to Patroclus is an archetypal male bond that occurs elsewhere in Greek culture: Damon and Pythias, Orestes and Pylades, Harmodius and Aristogiton are pairs of comrades who gladly face danger and death for and beside each other. From the Semitic world stem Gilgamesh and Enkidu, as well as David and Jonathan. The friendship of Achilles and Patroclus is mentioned explicitly only once in the Iliad, and then in a context of military excellence; it is the comradeship of warriors who fight always in each other’s ken: <From then on the son of Thetis urged that never in the moil of Ares [nas confusões da guerra] should Patroclus be stationed apart from his own man-slaughtering spear.>”
“The friendship with Patroclus blossomed into overt homosexual love in the fifth and fourth centuries, in the works of Aeschylus, Plato, and Aeschines, and as such seems to have inspired the enigmatic verses in Lycophron’s third-century Alexandra that make unrequited love Achilles’ motive for killing Troilus. By the IV century of our era this story had been elaborated into a sadomasochistic version in which Achilles causes the death of his beloved by crushing him in a lover’s embrace. As a rule, the post-classical tradition shows Achilles as heterosexual and having an exemplary asexual friendship with Patroclus. The figure of Achilles remained polyvalent. The classical Greek pederastic tradition only sporadically assimilated him, new variations appeared in pagan writings after the Golden Age of Hellenic civilization, and medieval Christian writers deliberately suppressed the homoerotic nuances of the figure.”
W. M. Clarke, Achilles and Patroclus in Love (1978)
“Athenian orator. His exchanges with Demosthenes in the courts in 343 and 330 reflect the relations between Athens and Macedon in the era of Alexander the Great. Aeschines and Demosthenes were both members of the Athenian boule (assembly) in the year 347-46, and their disagreements led to 16 years of bitter enmity. Demosthenes opposed Aeschines and the efforts to reach an accord with Philip of Macedon, while Aeschines supported the negotiations and wanted to extend them into a peace that would provide for joint action against aggressors and make it possible to do without Macedonian help. In 346-45 Demosthenes began a prosecution of Aeschines for his part in the peace negotiations – Aeschines replied with a charge that Timarchus, Demosthenes’ ally, had prostituted himself with other males and thereby incurred atimia,<civic dishonor>, which disqualified him from addressing the assembly. Aeschines’ stratagem was successful, and Timarchus was defeated and disenfranchised. The oration is often discussed because of the texts of the Athenian laws that it cites, as well as such accusations that Timarchus had gone down to Piraeus, ostensibly to learn the barber’s trade.”
QUEM DISSE, JAEGER, QUE NÃO SE PODE SER SOLDADO E POETA AO MESMO TEMPO? “First of the great Attic tragedians. Aeschylus fought against the Persians at Marathon and probably Salamis. Profoundly religious and patriotic, he produced, according to one catalogue, 72 titles, but 10 others are mentioned elsewhere. He was the one who first added a second actor to speak against the chorus. Of his 7 surviving tragedies, none is pederastic. His lost Myrmidons, however, described in lascivious terms the physical love of Achilles for Patroclus’ thighs, altering the age relationship given in Homer’s Iliad – where Patroclus is a few years the older, but as they grew up together, they were essentially agemates – to suggest that Achilles was the lover (erastes)of Patroclus.
Plato had Phaedrus point out the confusion, and argue that Patroclus must have been the older and therefore the lover, while the beautiful Achilles was his beloved (Symposium, 180a). Among Attic tragedians Aeschylus was followed by Sophocles, Euripides, and Agathon.
Sophocles (496-406 B.C.), who first bested Aeschylus in 468 and added a third actor, wrote 123 tragedies of which 7 survive, all from later than 440.At least 4 of his tragedies were pederastic. Euripides (480-406 B.C.) wrote 75 tragedies of which 19 survive, and the lost Chrysippus,and probably some others as well, were pederastic. Euripides loved the beautiful but effeminate tragedian Agathon until Agathon was 40. The latter, who won his first victory in 416, was the first to reduce the chorus to a mere interlude, but none of his works survive.
All four of the greatest tragedians wrote pederastic plays but none survive, possibly because of Christian homophobia. The tragedians seem to have shared the pederastic enthusiasm of the lyric poets and of Pindar, though many of their mythical and historical source-themes antedated the formal institutionalization of paiderasteiain Greece toward the beginning of the sixth century before our era.”
(o artigo de William Percyfoi transcrito na íntegra)
“Pederasty was virtually pandemic in North Africa during the periods of Arab and Turkish rule. Islam as a whole was tolerant of pederasty, and in North Africa particularly so. (The Islamic high-water points in this respect may tentatively be marked out as Baghdad of The Thousand and One Nights, Cairo of the Mamluks, Moorish Granada, and Algiers of the 16th and 17th centuries.) The era of Arabic rule in North Africa did, however, witness occasional puritan movements and rulers, such as the Almohads and a Shiite puritanism centered in Fez (Morocco). This puritanism continues with the current King Hassan II of Morocco, who is, however, hampered by an openly homosexual brother.”
“400 Franciscan friars left the Spain of Isabel the Catholic and embraced Islam rather than <mend their ways>, as she had commanded them to do.”
“Universal throughout pre-colonial North Africa was the singing and dancing boy, widely preferred over the female in café entertainments and suburban pleasure gardens. A prime cultural rationale was to protect the chastity of the females, who would instantly assume the status of a prostitute in presenting such a performance. The result was several centuries of erotic performances by boys, who were the preferred entertainers even when female prostitutes were available, and who did not limit their acts to arousing the lust of the patrons. A North African merchant could stop at the café for a cup of tea and a hookah[narguilé], provided by a young lad, listen to the singing, and then proceed to have sex with the boy right on the premises, before returning to his shop.”
“The present writer has spoken with a Tunisian supervisor of schools who firmly believes in the death penalty for all homosexuals. Thus, in their rush to modernism, Third World leaders often adopt the sexual standards of medieval Christendom, even as Europe and America are moving toward legalization and tolerance of same-sex activity. Such, at least in part, is also the plight of modern North Africa.”
“Tunisia. A small and impoverished country of some 4 million, Tunisia’s high birthrate keeps the country very young – about half the people are under 18. Although it is common to see men walking hand-in-hand (as in all Islamic countries), it would not be wise for a foreigner to adopt the practice with a male lover. Tunisians can easily tell the difference between two friends of approximately equal status (where hand-holding is expected) and a sexual relation (which is <officially> disapproved of and therefore not to be made public).” “In the days of Carthage, the city was known for its perfumed male prostitutes and courtesans. After Carthage was destroyed in the Punic wars, Tunisia became a Roman colony. The country did not regain its independence until modern times. The Romans were supplanted by the Vandals, who in turn surrendered the country to the Byzantine Empire. The rise of the followers of Muhammad swept Tunisia out of Christendom forever, and the country eventually passed into the Turkish Empire, where it remained until the French protectorate.”
“Marxist societies abominate homosexuality, and this influence has had a chilling effect on Algeria. The passing tourist will see nothing of such activity, although residents may have a different experience. Another fact is that Algerians do not like the French (because of the war) and this dislike is frequently extended to all people who look like Frenchmen, though they may be Canadian or Polish. It is a strange country, where you can spot signs saying <Parking Reserved for the National Liberation Front> (the stalls are filled with Mercedes Benzes), and also the only place in all of North Africa where the present writer has even seen a large graffito proclaiming <Nous voulons vivre français!> (We want to live as Frenchmen!).
The adventures of Oscar Wilde and André Gide in Tunisia and Algeria before the war are good evidence that this modern difference between the two countries was in fact caused by the trauma of the war. There is better evidence in the history of Algiers long before. During the 16th and 17th centuries, Algiers was possibly the leading homosexual city in the world. It was the leading Ottoman naval and administrative center in the western Mediterranean, and was key to Turkey’s foreign trade with every country but Italy. Of the major North African cities, it was the furthest from the enemy – Europe. It was the most Turkish city in North Africa, in fact the most Turkish city outside Turkey.”
“The bath-houses (hammams) of Fez were the object of scandalous comments around 1500. Two factors assume a bolder relief in Morocco, although they are typical of North Africa as a whole. One is a horror of masturbation. This dislike, combined with the seclusion of good women and the diseases of prostitutes, leads many a Maghrebi [africano setentrional] to regard anal copulation with a friend as the only alternative open to him, and clearly superior to masturbation. It also leads
to such behavior being regarded as a mere peccadillo. The other, more peculiarly Moroccan tradition is that of baraka, a sort of <religious good luck>. It is believed that a saintly man can transmit some of this baraka to other men by the mechanism of anal intercourse. (Fellatio has traditionally been regarded with disgust in the region, although the 20th century has been changing attitudes.)”
Malek Chebel, L’Esprit de sérail: Perversions et marginalités sexuelles au
Magreb, Paris: Lieu Commun, 1988.
“Reared in the household of his guardian and uncle Pericles, he became the eromenos and later intimate friend of Socrates, who saved his life in battle. His, brilliance enabled him in 420 to become leader of the extreme democratic faction, and his imperialistic designs led Athens into an alliance with Argos and other foes of Sparta, a policy largely discredited by the Spartan victory at Mantinea. He sponsored the plan for a Sicilian expedition to outflank Sparta, which ended after his recall in the capture of thousands of Athenians, most of whom died in the salt mines where they were confined, but soon after the fleet reached Sicily his enemies recalled him on the pretext of his complicity in the mutilation of the Hermae, the phallic pillars marking boundaries between lots of land. He escaped, however, to Sparta and became the adviser of the Spartan high command. Losing the confidence of the Spartans and accused of impregnating the wife of one of Sparta’s two kings, he fled to Persia, then tried to win reinstatement at Athens by winning Persian support for the city and promoting an oligarchic revolution, but without success. Then being appointed commander by the Athenian fleet at Samos, he displayed his military skills for several years and won a brilliant victory at Cyzicus in 410, but reverses in battle and political intrigue at home led to his downfall, and he was finally murdered in Phrygia in 404 [Sócrates, mais velho, foi condenado apenas em 399]. Though an outstanding politician and military leader, Alcibiades compromised himself by the excesses of his sexual life, which was not confined to his own sex, but was uninhibitedly bisexual, as was typical of a member of the Athenian aristocracy. The Attic comedians scolded him for his adventures; Aristophanes wrote a play (now lost) entitled Triphales (The man with three phalli), in which Alcibiades’ erotic exploits were satirized. In his youth, admired by the whole of Athens for his beauty, he bore on his coat of arms an Eros hurling a lightning bolt. Diogenes Laertius said of him that <when a young man, he separated men from their wives, and later, wives from their husbands,> while the comedian Pherecrates declared that <Alcibiades, who once was no man, is now the man of all women>. He gained a bad reputation for introducing luxurious practices into Athenian life, and even his dress was reproached for extravagance. He combined the ambitious political careerist and the bisexual dandy, a synthesis possible only in a society that tolerated homosexual expression and even a certain amount of heterosexual licence in its public figures. His physical beauty alone impressed his contemporaries enough to remain an inseparable part of his historical image.”
Walter Ellis, Alcibiades, New York: Routledge, 1989;
Jean Hatzfeld, Alcibiade: Étude sur l’histoire d’Athènes à la fin du Ve siècle, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1951.
“Étienne de la Boétie (1530-1563) and William Godwin (1756-1836) wrote two proto-anarchist classics. Boétie’s Discours de la servitude voluntaire (1552-53) (translated as The Politics of Obedience and as The Will to Bondage) is still read by anarchists.” Ver excertos em Português em http://xtudotudo6.zip.net/arch2012-11-01_2012-11-30.html.
“Pederasty comes not so much from lack of marriage bed as from a hazy yearning for masculine beauty.”Proudhon
“The boy-lover John Henry Mackay (1864-1933), who wrote widely on both pederastic (under the pseudonym Sagitta) and anarchist topics, prepared the first (and only) biography of Stirner in 1898.”
“Karl Marx & Frederick Engels had a personal disgust for homosexuality (Engels told Marx to be grateful that they were too old to attract homosexuals). Marx published full-length diatribes against Proudhon, Stirner, and Bakunin. He used Bakunin’s relationship to Nechaev as an excuse for expelling the anarchists from the International in 1872. Lenin later denounced anarchists as politically <infantile>, just as Freudians argued that homosexuality was an arrested infantile (or adolescent) development.”
“Thomas Bell, a gay secretary of Frank Harris and a trick[?] of Wilde’s, has written a book on Wilde’s anarchism, available only in Portuguese.[!]”
“In Spain during the Civil War (1936-39), anarchists fought against both the fascists and the communists, and for a time dominated large areas of the country. Many gay men and lesbians volunteered to fight in the war, while others worked as ambulance drivers and medics.”
“Emma Goldman (1869-1940) is unquestionably the first person to lecture publicly in the United States on homosexual emancipation”
“Whether from choice or necessity, anarchists have written extensively against prisons and in favor of prisoners, many of whom either from choice or necessity have experienced prison homosexuality. William Godwin opposed punishment of any kind and all anarchists have opposed any enforced sexuality.”
“Both anarchists and gays can be found in the Punk Rock movement. Since many anarchists do not really believe in organizations, they can often be as hard to identify as homosexuals once were. During the early 80s at the New York Gay Pride marches, gay anarchists, S/M groups, gay atheists, NAMBLA, Pag Rag and others all marched together with banners as individual members drifted back and forth between all the groups.”
“A major question is whether homosexuals are inherently attracted to anarchism or whether homosexuals have been equally attracted to democracy, communism, fascism, monarchy, nationalism or capitalism. Because of the secrecy, no one can ever figure what percentage of homosexuals are anarchists and what percentage of anarchists are homosexual. But only among anarchists has there been a consistent commitment, rooted in basic principles of the philosophy, to build a society in which every person is free to express him- or herself sexually in every way.”
ANDERSEN, HANS CHRISTIAN
“His fame rests upon the 168 fairy tales and stories which he wrote between 1835 and 1872. Some of the very first became children’s classics from the moment of their appearance; the tales have since been translated into more than 100 languages. Some are almost child-like in their simplicity; others are so subtle and sophisticated that they can be properly appreciated only by adults.”
“It has been speculated that the fairy tale The Little Mermaid, completed in January 1837, is based on Andersen’s self-identification with a sexless creature with a fish’s tail who tragically loves a handsome prince, but instead of saving her own future as a mermaid by killing the prince and his bride sacrifices herself and commits suicide – another theme of early homosexual apologetic literature.”
“There is a tendency to consider androgyny primarily psychic and constitutional, while hermaphroditism is anatomical.”
“with reference to male human beings <androgynous> implies effeminacy. Logically, it should then mean <viraginous, masculinized> when applied to women, but this parallel is rarely drawn.Thus there is an unanalyzed tendency to regard androgynization as essentially a process of softening or mitigating maleness. Stereotypically, the androgyne is a half-man or incomplete male. In addition to these relatively specific usages there is a kind of semantic halo effect, whereby androgyny is taken to refer to a more all-encompassing realm. Significantly, in this broader, almost mystical sense the negative connotations fall away, and androgyny may even be a prized quality. For example the figures in the Renaissance paintings of Botticelli and Leonardo are sometimes admired for their androgynous beauty. It comes as no surprise that these aspects of the artists were first emphasized by homosexual art critics of the 19th century.”
“In Hinduism and some African religions there are male gods who have female manifestations or avatars. A strand of Jewish medieval interpretation of Genesis holds that Adam and Eve were androgynous before the Fall. If this be the case, God himself must be androgynous since he made man <in his own image>. Working from different premises, medieval Christian mystics found that the compassion of Christ required that he be conceived of as a mother. Jakob Böhme (1575-1624), the German seer, held that all perfect beings, Christ as well as the angels, were androgynous. He foresaw that ultimately Christ’s sacrifice would make possible a restoration of the primal androgyny.”
“androgyny points the way to a return to the Golden Age, an era of harmony unmarred by the conflict and dissension of today which are rooted in an unnatural polarization.”
Mircea Eliade, Mephistopheles and the Androgyne, New York: Harper and Row, 1965.
“In the 1970s the well-publicized reports of the German ethologist Konrad Lorenz drew attention to male-male pair bonds in greylag geese. Controlled reports of <lesbian> behavior among birds, in which two females share the responsibilities of a single nest, have existed since 1885. Mounting behavior has been observed among male lizards, monkeys, and mountain goats. In some cases one male bests the other in combat, and then mounts his fellow, engaging in penile thrusts – though rarely with intromission. In other instances, a submissive male will <present> to a dominant one, by exhibiting his buttocks in a receptive manner. Mutual masturbation and fellatio have been observed among male stump-tailed macaques. During oestrus female rhesus monkeys engage in mutual full-body rubbing. Those who have observed these same-sex patterns in various species have noted, explicitly or implicitly, similarities with human behavior. It is vital, however, not to elide differences. Mounting behavior may not be sexual, but an expression of social hierarchy: the dominant partner reaffirms his superiority over the presenting one. In most cases where a sexual pairing does occur, one partner adopts the characteristic behavior of the other sex. While this behavioral inversion sometimes occurs in human homosexual conduct, it is by no means universal. Thus while (say) Roman homosexuality, which often involved slaves submitting to their masters, may find its analogue among animals, modern American androphilia largely does not. This difference suggests that the cultural matrix is important.” “In the light of this complexity, a simple identification of human homosexual behavior with same-sex interactions among animals is reductive, and may block or misdirect the search for an understanding of the remaining mysteries of human sexuality. Still, for those aspects to which they have relevance, animal patterns of homosexual behavior help to place human ones in a phylogenetic perspective – in somewhat the same way as animal cries and calls have a relation to human language, and the structures built by birds and beavers anticipate the feats of human architecture.”
“In the 17th century Sir Edward Coke attributed the origin of sodomy to <pride, excess of diet, idleness and contempt of the poor>. The noted English jurist was in fact offering a variation on the prophet Ezekiel (16:49). This accusation reflects the perennial truism that wealth, idleness, and lust tend to go together – a cluster summed up in the Latin term luxuria.”
“The stereotype of aristocratic vice has a sequel in the early 20th-century Marxist notion that the purported increase of homosexuality in modem industrial states stems from the decadence of capitalism; in this view the workers fortunately remain psychologically healthy and thus untainted by the debilitating proclivity. In the Krupp and von Moltke-Eulenburg scandals in Germany in 1903-08, journalists of the socialist press did their best to inflame their readership against the unnatural vices of the aristocracy, which were bringing the nation to the brink of ruin.”
“As a thinker Aristotle is outstanding for the breadth of his interests, which encompassed the entire panorama of the ancient sciences, and for his efforts to make sense of the world through applying an organic and developmental approach. In this way he departed from the essentialist, deductive emphasis of Plato. Unfortunately, Aristotle’s polished essays, which were noted for their style, are lost, and the massive corpus of surviving works derives largely from lecture notes. In these the wording of the Greek presents many uncertainties”
“Although Aristotle is known to have had several male lovers, in his writings he tended to follow Plato’s lead in favoring restraints on overt expression of homoerotic feelings. He differs, however, from Plato’s ethical and idealizing approach to male same-sex love by his stress on biological factors. In a brief but important treatment in the Nicomachean Ethics (7:5) he was the first to distinguish clearly between innate and acquired homosexuality. This dichotomy corresponds to a standard Greek distinction between processes which are determined by nature (physis) and those which are conditioned by culture or custom (nomos).The approach set forth in this text was to be echoed a millennium and a half later in the Christian Scholastic treatments of Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologiae, 31:7). In The History of Animals (9:8), Aristotle anticipates modem ethology by showing that homosexual behavior among birds is linked to patterns of domination and submission. In various passages he speaks of homosexual relations among noted Athenian men and boys as a matter of course. His treatment of friendship (Nicomachean Ethics, books 8 and 9) emphasizes its mutual character, based on the equality of the parties, which requires time for full consolidation. He takes it as given that true friendship can occur only between two free males of equal status, excluding slaves and women. Aristotle’s ideas on friendship were to be echoed by Cicero, Erasmus, Michel de Montaigne, and Francis Bacon.
The Problems (4:26), a work attributed to Aristotle but probably compiled by a follower, attributes desire for anal intercourse in men to the accumulation of semen in the fundament. This notion derives from the common Greek medical view that semen is produced in the region of the brain and then transferred by a series of conduits to the lower body.
In England and America a spurious compilation of sexual and generative knowledge, Aristotle’s Masterpiece, enjoyed a long run of popularity. Compiled from a variety of sources, including the Hippocratic and Galenic medical traditions, the medieval writings of Albertus Magnus, and folklore of all kinds, this farrago was apparently first published in English in 1684. A predecessor of later sex manuals, the book contains such lore as the determination of the size of the penis from that of the nose.”
“Before the 16th century, we find only representations of friendship between women; then in the Venetian school there begins an imagery of lesbian dalliance – but only for male entertainment. Only in recent decades has there been a substantial production of lesbian art by lesbians and for lesbians.”
“In antiquity the Greeks were noted for their national peculiarity of exercising in the nude. Out of this custom grew the monumental nude statue, a genre that Greece bequeathed to the world. The tradition began a little before 600 B.C. with the sequence of nude youths known as kowoi. (Monumental female nudes did not appear until ca. 350 B.C.) Although archeologists have maintained a deafening silence on the matter, it seems clear that the radiance of these figures can only be explained in the light of the Greek homoerotic appreciation of the male form. Whatever else they may have been, the kowoi were the finest pin-ups ever created.”
“The Romans did not share the Greek fondness for nude exercise and their attitude toward homosexual behavior was more ambiguous. Perhaps it is not surprising that they favored the old religious subject of the hermaphrodite, the double-sexed being, but now reduced largely to a subject of titillation [erotização – vulgarização]. They also were capable of depicting scenes of peeping toms [machos, provavelmente felinos] that recall the atmosphere of Petronius’s Satyricon.”
“After the reign of Hadrian, who died in 138, the great age of ancient homoerotic art was over. Consequently, the adoption of Christianity cannot be said to have killed off a vibrant tradition, but it certainly did not encourage its revival.”
“Since Freud’s essay of 1910 the enigmatic figure of Leonardo has offered a special appeal.”
“By the turn of the century magazines began to appear in Germany presenting, by means of photographic reproduction, works appealing exclusively to male homosexual taste; lesbian magazines were only to emerge after World War I. Exceptionally, the American George Piatt Lynes (1907-1955) pursued a career in both mainstream and gay media (the latter in his extensive work for the Swiss magazine, Dei Kreis).”
“Although the Surrealists sought to explore sexuality, the homophobia of their leader André Breton placed a ban on gay subjects – or at least male ones. Two related figures did explore in this realm however, the writer Jean Cocteau (1889-1963), with his drawings of sailors, and the Argentine-born painter Leonor Fini (b. 1908), with enigmatic scenes of women. The ambitious Russian-born Pavel Tchelitchev (1898-1957), connected with several avant-garde circles in Europe and America, also belongs in this company.”
“It may be doubted that the long-standing premises of the modernist aesthetic – its sense of discontinuity, irony, and high seriousness – have been definitively overcome, but there is no doubt that the boundaries of the acceptable have been broadened. This enlargement creates opportunities for gay and lesbian artists. At the same time, however, the tyranny of the market and of critical stereotypes is as great as ever, so that artists are under great pressure to settle into niches that have been prepared for them. It should be remembered that many painters, sculptors, and photographers whose personal orientation is homosexual are as reluctant to be styled <gay artists> as they are to be called neo-expressionist, neo-mannerist, or some other label.”
“Vautrin’s secret is that he does not love women, but when and how does he love men? He does so only in the rents of the fabric of the narrative, because the technique of the novelist lies exactly in not speaking openly, but letting the reader know indirectly the erotic background of the events of his story. The physical union of Vautrin with Lucien he presents with stylistic subtlety as a predestined coupling of two halves of one being, as submission to a law of nature. The homosexual aspect of the discourse must always be masked, must hide behind a euphemism, a taunting ambiguity that nevertheless tells all to the knowing reader. The pact struck between Vautrin and Lucien is a Faustian one. Vautrin dreams of owning a plantation in the American South (sic) where on a 100,000 acres he can have absolute power over his slaves – including their bodies. Balzac refers explicitly to examples of the pederasty of antiquity as a creative, civilization-building force by analogy with the Promethean influence of Vautrin upon his beloved Lucien. Vautrin is almost diabolical as a figure of exuberant masculinity, while Lucien embodies the gentleness and meekness of the feminine. The unconscious dimension of their relationship Balzac underlines with magnificent symbolism. He characterizes Vautrin as a monster, <but attached by love to humanity>.Homosexual love is not relegated to the margin of society, as in the dark underworld of the prison, but expresses the fullness of affection with all its physical demands and its spiritual powers.”
“Having revealed to the hero and heroine an ideal love, Séraphitus-Séraphita departs for a heaven free of the earthly misery that human beings must endure.”
“Barthes introduced into the discussion of literature an original interpretation of semiotics based on the work of the Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure. His work was associated with the structuralist trend as represented by Claude Lévi-Strauss, Julia Kristeva, Tzvetan Todorov, and others. Attacked by the academic establishment for subjectivism, he formulated a concept of criticism as a creative process on an equal plane with fiction and poetry. Even those favorable to his work conceded that this could amount to a <sensuous manhandling> of the text. The turning point in his criticism is probably the tour de forceS/Z (Paris, 1970), analyzing Balzac’s novella about an aging castrato, Sarrasine. Here Barthes turns away from the linear, goal-oriented procedures of traditional criticism in favor of a new mode that is dispersed, deliberately marginal, and <masturbatory>. In literature, he emphasized the factor of jouissance, a word which means both <bliss> and <sexual ejaculation>. Whether these procedures constitute models for a new feminist/gay critical practice that will erode the power of patriarchy, as some of his admirers have asserted, remains unclear.”
“Barthes, who never married, was actively homosexual during most of his life. Although his books are often personal, in his writing he excluded this major aspect of his experience, even when writing about love. Because of the attacks launched against him for his critical innovations, he was apparently reluctant to give his enemies an additional stick with which to beat him. Barthes’ posthumously published Incidents (Paris, 1987) does contain some revealing diary entries. The first group stems from visits he made, evidently in part for sexual purposes, to North Africa in 1968-69. The second group of entries records restless evenings in Paris in the autumn of 1979 just before his death. These jottings reveal that, despite his great fame, he frequently experienced rejection and loneliness. Whatever his personal sorrows, Barthes’ books remain to attest a remarkable human being whose activity coincided with an ebullient phase of Western culture.”
Sanford Freedman, Roland Barthes: A Bibliographical Reader’s Guide, New York: Garland, 1983.
“The origins of this trend in American culture can be traced to the friendship of three key figures in New York City at the beginning of the 1940s. Allen Ginsberg (1926-) and Jack Kerouac (1922-1969) met as students at Columbia University, where both were working at becoming writers. In 1944 Ginsberg encountered the somewhat older William Burroughs (1914-), who was not connected with the University, but whose acquaintance with avant-garde literature supplied an essential intellectual complement to college study. Both Ginsberg and Burroughs were homosexual; Kerouac bisexual. At first the ideas and accomplishments of the three were known only to a small circle. But toward the end of the 1950s, as their works began to be published and widely read, large numbers of young people, <beatniks> and <hippies>, took up elements of their life-style.”
“The word beat was sometimes traced to <beatific>, and sometimes to <beat out> and similar expressions, suggesting a pleasant exhaustion that derives from intensity of experience. Its appeal also reflects the beat and improvisation of jazz music, one of the principal influences on the trend. Some beat poets tried to match their writings with jazz in ballroom recitals, prefiguring the more effective melding of words and music in folk and rock. The ideal of spontaneity was one of the essential elements of the beat aesthetic. These writers sought to capture the immediacy of speech and lived experience, which were, if possible, to be transcribed directly as they occurred. This and related ideals reflect a new version of American folk pragmatism, preferring life to theory, immediacy to reflection, and feeling to reason. Contrary to what one might expect, however, the beat generation was not anti-intellectual, but chose to seek new sources of inspiration in neglected aspects of the European avant-garde and in Eastern thought and religion.”
“First published in Paris in 1959, his novel Naked Lunchbecame available in the United States only after a series of landmark obscenity decisions. With its phantasmagoric and sometimes sexually explicit subject matter, together with its quasi-surrealist techniques of narrative and syntactic disjunction, this novel presented a striking new vision. This novel was followed by The Soft Machineand The Ticket That Explodedto form a trilogy. Nova Express (1964) makes extensive use of the <cut-up> techniques, which Burroughs had developed with his friend Brion Gysin. A keen observer of contemporary reality in several countries, Burroughs has sought to present a kind of <world upside down> in order to sharpen the reader’s consciousness. One of his major themes has been his anarchist-based protest against what he sees as increasingly repressive social control through such institutions as medicine and the police. Involved with
drugs for some years, he managed to kick the habit, but there is no doubt that such experiences shaped his viewpoint. His works have been compared to pop art in painting and science fiction in literature. Sometimes taxed for misogyny, his world tends to be a masculine one, sometimes exploiting fantasies of regression to a hedonistic world of juvenile freedom. Burroughs’s hedonism is acerbic and ironic, and his mixture of qualities yields a distorting mirror of reality which some have found, because perhaps of the many contradictions of later 20th-century civilization itself, to be a compelling representation.”
Ted Morgan, Literary Outlaw: The Life and Times of William Burroughs, New York: Henry Holt, 1988.
BEATS AND HIPPIES
“The journalistic word <beatnik> is a pseudo-Slavic coinage of a type popular in the 1960s, the core element deriving from <beat> (generation), the suffix -nik being the formative of the noun of agent in Slavic languages. The term <hippie> was originally a slightly pejorative diminutive of the beat <hipster>, which in turn seems to derive from 1940s jivetalk adjective <hep>, meaning <with it, in step with current fashions>. The original hippies were a younger group with more spending money and more flamboyant dress. Their music was rock instead of the jazz of the beats. Despite differences that seemed important at the time, beats and hippies are probably best regarded as successive phases of a single phenomenon.”
“Attracted by the prestige of the beat writers, many beats/hippies cultivated claims to be poets and philosophers. In reality, once the tendency became modish only a few of the beat recruits were certifiably creative in literature and the arts; these individuals were surrounded by masses of people attracted by the atmosphere of revolt and experiment, or just seeking temporary separation – a moratorium as it was then called – from the banalities of ordinary American life. At its height the phenomenon supported scores of underground newspapers, which were read avidly by curious outsiders as well.”
“Significantly, the street term for the Other, <straight>, could refer either to non-drug users or heterosexuals.”
“Mysticism exerted a potent influence among beats and hippies, and some steeped themselves in Asian religions, especially Buddhism, Taoism, and Sufism. This fascination was not new, inasmuch as ever since the foundation of Theosophy as an official movement in 1875, American and other western societies had been permeated by Eastern religious elements. Impelled by a search for wisdom and cheap living conditions, many hippies and beatniks set out for prolonged sojourns in India, Nepal, and North Africa. Stay-at-homes professed their deep respect for American Indian culture.”
“Most hippies were heterosexual, but their long hair exposed them to jibes of effeminacy. In this way they could experience something of the rejection that had always been the lot of homosexuals.”
“With its adoption of a variant of jive talk, largely derived from black urban speech, the movement has left a lasting impression on the English vernacular, as seen in such expressions as <cool>, <spaced out>, and <rip off>.”
Marco Vassi, The Stoned Apocalypse, New York: Trident, 1972.
BENTHAM, JEREMY (1748-1832)
“English philosopher and law reformer. Bentham was the founder of the Utilitarian school of social philosophy, which held that legislation should promote the greatest happiness of the greatest number. (…) His Principles of Morals and Legislation (1789) was eventually extremely influential in England, France, Spain, and Latin America where several new republics adopted constitutions and penal codes drawn up by him or inspired by his writings.
Bentham’s utilitarian ethics led him to favor abolition of laws prohibiting homosexual behavior. English law in his day (and until 1861) prescribed hanging for sodomy and during the early 19th century was enforced with, on the average, 2 or 3 hangings a year. Bentham held that relations between men were a source of sexual pleasure that did not lead to unwanted pregnancies and hence a social good rather than a social evil. He wrote extensive notes favoring law reform about 1774 and a 50-page manuscript essay in 1785. In 1791, the French National Assembly repealed France’s sodomy law but in England the period of reaction that followed the outbreak of the French Revolution made reforms impossible. In 1814 and 1816 Bentham returned to the subject and wrote lengthy critiques of traditional homophobia which he regarded as an irrational prejudice leading to <cruelty and intolerance>. In 1817-18 he wrote over 300 pages of notes on homosexuality and the Bible. Homophobic sentiment was, however, so intense in England, both in the popular press and in learned circles, that Bentham did not dare to publish any of his writings on this subject. They remained in manuscript until 1931 when C.K. Ogden included brief excerpts in an appendix to his edition of Bentham’s Theory of Legislation. Bentham’s manuscript writings on this subject are excerpted and described in detail in Louis Crompton’s 1985 monograph on Byron. Bentham’s views on homosexuality are sufficiently positive that he might be described as a precursor of the modern gay liberation movement. Bentham not only treats legal, literary, and religious aspects of the subject in his notes, but also finds support for his opinions in ancient history and comparative anthropology.”
“The emergence of systematic bibliographical control had to await the birth of the first homosexual emancipation movement in Berlin in 1897. This movement firmly held that progress toward homosexual rights must go hand in hand with intellectual enlightenment. Accordingly, each year’s production was noted in the annual volumes of the Jahrbuch fur sexuelle Zwischenstufen (1899-1923); by the end of the first ten years of monitoring over 1,000 new titles had been recorded. Although surveys were made of earlier literature, up to the time of the extinction of the movement by National-Socialism in 1933, no attempt had been made to organize this material into a single comprehensive bibliography of homosexual studies. Nonetheless, much valuable material was noted in the vast work of Magnus Hirschfeld, Die Homosexualität des Mannes und des Weisses (Berlin, 1914).”
Athenaeus (fl. ca. A.D. 200), Deipnosophists, Book 13;
Félix Buffiére, Eros adolescent: la pederastie dans la Grece antique (Paris, 1980);
Vern Bullough et al., Annotated Bibliography of Homosexuality(2 vols., New York, 1976);
Wayne R. Dynes, Homosexuality: A Research Guide (New York, 1987).
BRAZIL [HOMOPHOBIA NEWLAND] & PORTUGAL
“The Colonial Era.When the Portuguese reached Brazil in 1500, they were horrified to discover so many Indians who practiced the <unspeakable sin of sodomy>. In the Indian language they were called tivira, and André Thevet, chaplain to Catherine de Medici, described them in 1575 with the word bardache, perhaps the first occasion on which this term was used to describe Amerindian homosexuals. The native women also had relations with one another: according to the chroniclers they were completely <inverted> in appearance, work, and leisure, preferring to die rather than accept the name of women. Perhaps these cacoaimbeguire contributed to the rise of the New World Amazon myth.
In their turn the blacks – more than 5 million were imported during almost 4 centuries of slavery – made a major contribution to the spread of homosexuality in the <Land of the Parrots>. The first transvestite in Brazilian history was a black named Francisco, of the Mani-Congo tribe, who was denounced in 1591 by the Inquisition visitors, but refused to discard women’s clothing. Francisco was a member of the brotherhood of the quimbanba, homosexual fetishists who were well known and respected in the old kingdom of Congo-Angola. Less well established than among the Amerindians and Africans, the Portuguese component (despite the menace of the Tribunal of the Holy Office, 1536-62) continued unabated during the whole history of the kingdom, involving 3 rulers and innumerable notables, and earning sodomy the sobriquet of the <vice of the clergy>. If we compare Portugal with the other European countries of the Renaissance – not excluding England and the Netherlands – our documentation (abundant in the archives of the Inquisition) requires the conclusion that Lisbon and the principal cities of the realm, including the overseas metropolises of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro, boasted a gay subculture that was stronger, more vital, and more stratified than those of other lands, reflecting the fact that Luso-Brazilian gays were accorded more tolerance and social acceptance. Thirty sodomites were burned by the Inquisition during 3 centuries of repression, but none in Brazil, despite the more than 300 who were denounced for practicing the <evil sin>. They were referred to as sodomitas and fanchonos.
Independence. With Brazilian independence and the promulgation of the first constitution (1823) under the influence of the Napoleonic Code, homosexual behavior ceased to be criminal, and from this date forward there has been no Brazilian law restricting homosexuality[Bolsonaro e seu séquito se encontram quase 200 anos enterrados na História; me admira que não tenham morrido asfixiados em seu ideal de mundo até agora!] – apart from the prohibition with persons less than 18 years of age, the same as for heterosexuals. Lesbianism, outlawed by the Inquisition since 1646, had always been less visible than male homosexuality in Brazil, and there is no record of any mulher-macho (<male woman>) burned by the Portuguese Inquisition. In the course of Brazilian history various persons of note were publicly defamed for practicing homosexuality: in the 17th century 2 Bahia governors, Diogo Botelho and Câmara Coutinho, both contemporaries of the major satirical poet, Gregorio de Matos, author of the oldest known poem about a lesbian in the Americas, Nise. He himself was brought before the Inquisition for blasphemy in saying that <Jesus Christ was a sodomite>. [HAHAHA!] In the 19th century the revolutionary leader Sabino was accused of homosexual practices. A considerable surviving correspondence between Empress Leopoldina, consort of the Brazil’s first sovereign, Dom Pedro, with her English lady in waiting, Maria Graham, attests that they had both a homosexual relationship and an intense homoemotional reciprocity. Such famous poets and writers as Álvares de Azevedo (1831-1852), Olavo Bilac (1865-1918), and Mário de Andrade (1893-1945) rank among the votaries of Ganymede. The list also includes the pioneer of Brazilian aeronautics, Alberto Santos-Dumont (1873-1932), after whose airship the pommes Santos-Dumont were named. At the end of the 19th century homosexuality appears as a literary theme. In 1890 Aluizio Azevedo included a realistic lesbian scene in O Cortiço, and in 1895 Adolfo Caminha devoted the entire novel O Bom Crioulo(which has been translated into English) to a love affair between a cabin boy and his black protector. In the faculties of medicine of Rio de Janeiro and Bahia various theses addressed the homosexual question, beginning with O Androfilismo of Domingos Firmínio Ribeiro (1898) and O Homosexualismo: A Libertinagem no Rio de Janeiro (1906) by Pires de Almeida – both strongly influenced by the European psychiatrists Moll, Krafft-Ebing, and Tardieu. From 1930 comes the first and most outspoken Brazilian novel on lesbianism, O Terceiro Sexo, by Odilon Azevedo, where lesbian workers founded an association intended to displace men from power, thus setting forth a radical feminist discourse.”
“In 1976 appeared the main gay journal of Brazilian history, O Lampião (The Lantern)[!], which had a great positive effect on the rise of the Brazilian homosexual movement.” “One of the chief battles of gay activists is to denounce the repeated murders of homosexuals – about every 10 days the newspapers report a homophobic crime.”
“Recently the transvestite Roberta Close appeared on the cover of the main national magazines, receiving the accolade of <the model of the beauty of the Brazilian woman>. In the mid-1980s more than 400 Brazilian transvestites could be counted in the Bois de Boulogne in Paris; many also offer themselves in Rome. When they hear the statistics of the Kinsey Report, Brazilian gays smile, suggesting through experience and <participant observation> that in Brazil the proportion of predominantly homosexual men is as high as 30%.”
“Brazil, once the paradise of gays, has entered a difficult path.” Premonitório. Mas falava apenas da AIDS.
“Among world religions, Buddhism has been notable for the absence of condemnation of homosexuality as such.”
“For an account of the earliest form of Buddhism, scholars look to the canonical texts of the Tipitaka preserved in the Pali language and transmitted orally until committed to writing in the 2nd century B.C. These scriptures remain authoritative for the Theravada or Hinayana school of Buddhism, now dominant in Southeast Asia and Sri Lanka. The Pali Canon draws a sharp distinction between the path of the lay-person and that of the bhikkhu (mendicant monk, an ordained member of the Buddhist Sangha or Order). The former is expected primarily to support the Sangha and to improve his karmic standing through the performance of meritorious deeds so that his future lives will be more fortunate than his present one. The bhikkhu, in contrast, is expected to devote all his energies to self-liberation, the struggle to cast off the attachments which prevent him from attaining the goal of nirvana in the present lifetime.”
“all acts involving the intentional emission of his semen are prohibited for the monk; the insertion of the penis into a female or male is grounds for automatic expulsion from the Sangha, while even masturbation is a (lesser) offense.” “there is no law against a monk receiving a penis into his own body.”
“The full rules of the vinaya are not applied to the samanera or novice monk, who may be taken into the Sangha as early as 7 years old and who is generally expected though not obligated to take the Higher Ordination by the age of 21. In this way the more intense sexual drive of the male teenager is tacitly allowed for. A samanera may masturbate without committing an offense. Interestingly, while a novice commits a grave offense if he engages in coitus with a female, requiring him to leave the Sangha, should he instead have sex with a male he is only guilty of a lesser offense requiring that he reaffirms his samanera vows and perform such penance as is directed by his teacher. This may be the only instance of a world religion treating homosexual acts more favorably than heterosexual ones.”
“it has been speculated that homosexual orientation may arise from the residual karma of a previous life spent in the opposite gender from that of the body currently occupied by the life-continuum. This explanation contains no element of negativity but rather posits homosexuality as a <natural> result of the rebirth cycle.”
“The form of Buddhism which spread northward into Tibet, China, Japan, Korea, and Mongolia from its Indian heartland came to be known as the Mahayana. It de-emphasized the dichotomy between monk and lay-person and relaxed the strict vinaya codes, even permitting monks to marry (in Japan). The Mahayana doctrinally sought to obliterate categorical thinking in general and resolutely fought against conceptual dualism. These tendencies favored the development of positive attitudes toward homosexual practices, most notably in Japan.”
“When Father Francis Xavier arrived in Japan in the mid-16th century with the hope of converting the Japanese to Christianity, he was horrified upon encountering many Buddhist monks involved in same-sex relationships; indeed, he soon began referring to homoeroticism as the <Japanese vice>. Although some Buddhist monks condemned such relationships, notably the monk Genshin, many others either accepted or participated in same-sex relationships. Among Japanese Buddhist sects in which such relationships have been documented are the Jishu, Hokkeshu, Shingon, and Zen.”
“Zen, that form of Buddhism perhaps most familiar to Westerners, emerged during the 9th century. In the Zen monasteries of medieval Japan, same-sex relations, both between monks and between monks and novices (known as kasshiki and shami), appear to have been so commonplace that the shogun Hojo Sadatoki (whom we might now refer to as <homophobic>) initiated an unsuccessful campaign in 1303 to rid the monasteries of same-sex love. Homoerotic relationships occurring within a Zen Buddhist context have been documented in such literary works as the Gozan Bungaku, Iwatsutsuji, and Comrade Loves of the Samurai . The blending of Buddhism and homoeroticism has continued to figure prominently in the works of contemporary Japanese writers, notably Yukio Mishima and Mutsuo Takahashi.”
“the Gelugpas [seita tibetana dos Lamas que se sucedem] condemned heterosexual intercourse for monks, believing that the mere odor resulting from heterosexual copulation could provoke the rage of certain deities. Such misogynistic and anti-heterosexual notions may have encouraged same-sex bonding.”
“Among those who may be credited with introducing the West to Buddhism are Walt Whitman and Henry David Thoreau, both of whom are thought to have loved members of the same sex and both of whom blended elements of Buddhism with elements of other spiritual traditions in their work. In the latter half of the 20th century, many American gays are practitioners of Buddhism, and the blending of homoeroticism and Buddhism may be found in the work of a number of gay American writers and musicians including Allen Ginsberg, Harold Norse, Richard Ronan, Franklin Abbott, and Lou Harrison.”
“The most influential poet of his day, with a world-wide reputation, Byron became famous with the publication of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage (1812-
18), an account of his early travels in Portugal, Spain, Albania, and Greece. The proud, gloomy, guilt-ridden, alienated Harold defined the <Byronic hero> who was to reappear in various guises in Byron’s later poems, notably in Manfred, The Corsair, and Lara. The type became a defining image for European and American romanticism. Forced into exile in 1816 because of the scandal caused by his wife’s leaving him, Byron settled in Italy, principally in Venice. There he wrote his sparkling satire on cant and hypocrisy, Don Juan. He spent the last months of his life in Greece, trying to help the Greeks in their struggle to gain independence from the Turks.”
“Because of the intense homophobia of English society these poems were ostensibly addressed to a woman, as the name Thyrza and Byron’s use of feminine pronouns implied.”
“publicity about his love affair with his half-sister, Augusta Leigh, compounded the scandal [of his homosexuality].”
“Byron’s last three poems, On This Day I Complete My 36th Year, Last Words on Greece, and Love and Death, poignantly describe his love for Loukas, which was not reciprocated.”
“A surreptitiously published erotic poem, Don Leon, purporting to be Byron’s lost autobiography, probably written in 1833, had set forth many of the facts about Byron’s homosexuality but was dismissed as an unwarranted libel. An edition appeared in 1866 but it remained unknown to all but a few specialists. When the Fortune Press reprinted it in 1934, the publication was confiscated by the British police.”
“In addition to his three wives and several mistresses, Julius Caesar had a number of homosexual affairs.”
Arthur D. Kahn, The Education of Julius Caesar: A Biography, a Reconstruction, New York: Schocken, 1986;
“American novelist and journalist. Capote became famous at the age of 24 with his elegant, evocative book Other Voices, Other Rooms, which concerns the growing consciousness of a boy seeking to comprehend the ambivalent inhabitants of a remote Mississippi house. Dubbed <swamp baroque>, this short novel was easily assimilated into then-current notions of Southern decadence. (…) In 1966 he published In Cold Blood, a <non-fiction novel> about the seemingly senseless murder of a Kansas farm family by two drifters. In preparing for the book, Capote gained the confidence of the murderers, and was thus able to make vivid their sleazy mental universe.”
“Capote became the confidant of rich and famous people, especially women, and he gathered their stories for incorporation in a major work which was intended to rival Marcel Proust. Yet when excerpts from this work-in-progress were published in magazines, not only were they found to be vulgar and lacking in insight, but Capote began to be dropped by the socialites he had so unsubtly satirized. Dismayed, the writer sank more and more into a miasma of alcohol, cocaine, and valium – his only consolation the devoted love, or so he claimed, of a succession of straight, proletarian young men whom he prized because of their very ordinariness.”
“Caravaggio came under the protection of Cardinal Francesco Maria del Monte, a homosexual prelate. During this period he painted several works showing ambiguous or androgynous young men, including The Musicians (New York, Metropolitan Museum). Efforts have been made to deny the homoerotic implications of these works, but they seem feeble.”
“Only after World War II did his reputation begin to climb, attaining remarkable heights in the 1980s, when even the abstract artist Frank Stella praised him. In 1986 Derek Jarman’s stylish film Caravaggio was released, presenting the artist as bisexual, but emphasizing the homosexual side.”
“The castrati were male singers emasculated in boyhood to preserve the soprano or contralto range of their voices, who from the 16th century to the 19th played roles in Italian opera.” “Boys are commonly mischievous, unruly, and troublesome, and by the time they have really been trained their voices are usually on the edge of breaking; falsettists do not share these drawbacks, but their voices have a peculiar, unpleasant quality, and as a rule cannot attain as high a range as the soprano.”
“The elaborate a cappella style, which began to flourish about the middle of the 15th century, required a much wider range of voices and a higher degree of virtuosity than anything that had gone before, and for this task the existing singers were inadequate. The first response took the form of Spanish falsettists of a special kind, but by the end of the 16th century these had yielded to the castrati, who also dominated the new baroque art form – the opera, which was the principal musical activity of the Italian nation in the next two centuries. Opera was unlike legitimate theatre in that it traveled well; it was the first form of musical entertainment that was both popular and to a certain degree international, so that a star system transcending national borders arose. Leading singers were discussed, criticized, and compared in fashionable drawing rooms from Lisbon to St. Petersburg. (…) If other nations had some form of native opera, this ranked lower on the cultural scale and was indifferently sung, while the Italian version enjoyed the highest standard of singing that had ever been known, and will in all likelihood never again be attained. France alone refused admission to Italian singers, and virtually banned the castrati; but Frenchmen, like other Europeans, were full of praise for the opera of Italy.
Since no recording devices existed in the heyday of the castrati, the modern critic has no way of judging the quality of their performance, yet 6 generations of music-lovers preferred the voices of these <half-men> to those of women themselves and of whole men.”
“In this economic stratum, however, it was accepted that any male child who betrayed the slightest aptitude for music should be sold into servitude, just as in modern Thailand children are sold by their parents to labor in factories or serve in brothels. The successful castrato naturally tried to conceal his humble origins and pose as the scion of an honorable family. The singing-masters of that era were responsible for the perfection of the art of the castrati; no one since has rivaled them in perseverance and thoroughness, and in their perfect command of the capabilities and shortcomings of the human vocal organs. They usually worked in a conservatorio, though sometimes they had their own singing schools or tutored pupils on the side.
Since canon law condemned castration and threatened anyone involved in it with excommunication, which could be reinforced by civil penalties, the business had to be carried on more or less clandestinely, and everywhere prying questions brought only misleading and deceitful answers. The town of Lecce in Apulia, and Norcia, a small town in the Papal States about 20 miles east of Spoleto, are mentioned as notorious for the practice, though the castrati themselves came from all parts of the peninsula. The doctors most esteemed for their skill in the operation were those of Bologna, and their services were in demand not just in Italy but abroad as well.”
“The curriculum entailed much hard work, and was thorough and comprehensive; as much attention was given to the theory of singing as to its actual practice. Between the ages of 15 and 20, a castrato who had retained and embellished his voice, and passed the various tests with greater or lesser distinction, was considered ready for his debut. On contract to some opera house, he would often first be seen in a female part, for which his youth and fresh complexion would particularly suit him. His looks and unfamiliarity would perhaps gain him greater success than his art would have merited, to the rage and envy of his senior colleagues. Once his name was made, he would have his clique of admirers who attended en masse his every performance and extolled him as their idol; aristocratic ladies and gentlemen would fancy themselves in love with him and manipulate a piquant interview. Backstage, the rivalry with other singers could rage with intense virulence; and a castrato who was too vain and insolent might be assassinated by the hirelings of a rival’s protector. If, however, the performer did not please his audience, he would be doomed to touring small provincial opera houses, or to performing in a church choir. Dissatisfied with his situation, he could set off for Bologna, the marketplace for the musical profession in Italy, to better his fortunes. The castrati came in for a great amount of scurrilous and unkind abuse, and as their fame increased, so did the hatred of them. They were often castigated as malign creatures who lured men into homosexuality, and there were admittedly homosexual castrati, as Casanova’s accounts of XVIII century Italy bear witness. He mentions meeting an abbé whom he
took for a girl in disguise, but was later told that it was a famous castrate. In Rome in 1762, he attended a performance at which the prima donna was a castrato, the minion of Cardinal Borghese, who supped every evening with his protector. From his behavior on stage, <it was obvious that he hoped to inspire the love of those who liked him as a man, and probably would not have done so as a woman.> He concludes by saying that the holy city of Rome forces every man to become a pederast, even if it does not believe in the effect of the illusion which the castrati provoke.”
“Opponents of castration have claimed that the practice caused its victims an early loss of voice and an untimely death, while others have affirmed that castration prolonged the life of the vocal cords, and even that of their owner. There is no solid evidence for either contention: the castrati had approximately the same life span as their contemporaries, and retired at roughly the same age as other singers. The operation appears to have had surprisingly little effect on the general health and well-being of the subject, any more than on his sexual impulses. The trauma was largely a psychological one, in an age when virility was deemed a sovereign virtue.” A castração tardia não elimina a libido, ao contrário da crença vulgar. Não há solução fácil para o dilema da energia! Eu-nuco El-niño or neverminds…
“Toward the end of the XVIII century castrati went out of fashion, and new styles in musical composition led to the disappearance of these singers. Meyerbeer was the last composer of importance to write for the male soprano voice; his Il Crociato in Egitto, produced at Venice in 1824, was designed especially for a castrato star. Succeeding generations regarded their memory with derision and disgust, and were happy to live in an age when such products of barbarism were no longer possible. A few castrati performed in the Vatican chapel and some other Roman churches until late in the XIX century, but their vogue on the operatic stage had long passed.”
Angus Heriot, The Castrati in Opera
“The Latin common noun, catamitus, designating a minion or kept boy, is usually derived from the Greek proper name Ganymede(s), the favorite of Zeus. Another possible source is Kadmilos, the companion of the Theban god Kabeiros. The word entered English in 16th century as part of the Renaissance revival of classical literature, and has always retained a learned, quasi-exotic aura. The term could also be used as a verbal adjective, as <a catamited boy>.” “In modern English the termination -ite tends to be perceived as pejorative, as in Trotskyite (vs. Trotskyist) and sodomite.”
“Born at Verona, he spent most of his life in Rome, but kept a villa near his birthplace at Smirno on Lake Garda. Often considered the best Republican poet, he imitated Sappho as well as other archaic, classical, and Hellenistic models, upon which he often improved, and which he combined with native Latin traditions to create stunning, original pieces. He wrote poems, 250 of which survive, of happiness and bitter disappointment. Some are addressed to his mistress Clodia, 10 years his senior, whom he addressed as Lesbia(though with no insinuation of what we now call lesbianism), and who was unfaithful to him with other men. Homophobic Christians and modern schoolmasters have, however, greatly exaggerated the importance of the poems to Lesbia, which amount to no more than 1/8 of the Catullan corpus.”
“Sophisticated and fastidious, he set the standard for the Augustan poets of love Ovid, Horace, Vergil, and Propertius. In the Silver Age even Martial acknowledged his debt to Catullus’ epigrams. Like those poets, and most specifically Tibullus, he showed little inhibition and equal attraction to boys and women, but also shared the traditional attitude that the active, full-grown male partner degraded the passive one, and that the threat to penetrate another male symbolized one’s superior virility and power. On the other hand, the accusation of having been raped by another male has a largely negative force”
CENSORSHIP AND OBSCENITY
“The practice of tolerating certain hand-produced materials clearly shows that censorship is concerned not simply with the prohibition of materials, but with the size of the audience. It is for this reason that medical and other books dealing with sexual matters formerly had the crucial details in Latin.”
“The urge to censor is probably ultimately rooted in fear of blasphemy, the apprehension that if utterances offensive to the gods are tolerated their wrath will fall on the whole society. It was impiety toward the gods for which Socrates was tried and condemned in 399 B.C. The Roman erotic poet Ovid was banished by the puritanical emperor Augustus in A.D. 8.”
“Since the monasteries had a monopoly on producing manuscripts, it was assumed that such oversight was not necessary. In fact the abbey scriptoria not only copied erotic materials from Greco-Roman times, but created their own new genres of this type. In any event, the medieval authorities were concerned more with doctrinal deviation than with obscenity.” “The centralization of printing in the hands of a relatively few firms made it possible to scrutinize their intended productions before publication; only those that had passed the test and bore the imprimatur [seal] could be printed. It was then only necessary to make sure that heretical materials were not smuggled in from abroad. In Catholic countries this system was put in place by the establishment, under the Inquisition, with the Index of Prohibited Books in 1557. In countries where the Reformation took hold the control of books was generally assumed by the government. In England the requirement that books should be licenced for printing by the privy council or other agents of the crown was introduced in 1538. These origins explain why the activity of censors was for long chiefly concerned with the printed word. Revealingly, this system is still in force in Communist countries today .”
“The French author Nicolas Chorier contrived an even more ambitious ruse for his pansexual dialogues of Aloisia Sigea (1658(?)), which purported to be a translation into Latin by a Dutch author (Jan de Meurs) working from a Spanish original by a learned woman.” Entendeu? Uma tradução para o latim (língua culta) de um escrito erudito (mas vulgar) de uma espanhola, feito por um holandês, para circular na França!
“Many French books, unwelcome to throne and altar, were published in Geneva, in Amsterdam, and in Germany. With the coming of the French revolution, however, all restraints were off. Thus the large works which the Marquis de Sade had composed in prison were published, as well as two fascinating homosexual pamphlets, Les enfans de Sodome and Les petits bougres au manège. Although controls were eventually tightened again, Paris gained the reputation (which lasted until about 1960) among English and American travelers as the place where <dirty books> could be obtained.”
“Through his prudish editions of Shakespeare, Thomas Bowdler (1754-1825) gave rise to the term <bowdlerize>. At the ports, an efficient customs service kept all but a trickle of works deemed to be obscene from coming in. In the United States, the morals crusader Anthony Comstock (1844-1915) not only fought successfully for stringent new legislation, but as head of the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice [haha] he claimed responsibility for the destruction of 160 tons of literature and pictures. The restrictions on malleability proved to be particularly hard on publishers of homosexual material, and this problem was not overcome until the ONE, Inc. case in 1954. A landmark in freedom to read books in the United States was the 1931 Ulysses case. Shortly thereafter, however, Hollywood instituted a system of self-censorship known as the Hays Office. This device effectively prevented any direct representation of homosexual love on the silver screen for decades, the only exceptions being a very few foreign films shown at art houses. During this period book publishers practiced their own form of self-censorship by insisting that novels featuring homosexual characters must doom them to an unhappy end.
Only after World War II did the walls begin to come tumbling down in English-speaking countries. In Britain the publishers of Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence were acquitted after a spectacular trial in 1960. In America Grove Press had obtained a favorable court decision on the availability of Lady Chatterley in 1959; three years later the firm went on to publish Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer without difficulty. The travails of a book containing explicit homosexual passages, William Burroughs’ Naked Lunch, were more extended. In 1958 authorities at the University of Chicago refused to permit publication of excerpts in a campus literary review. This led to the founding of a new journal, largely to publish the Burroughs text; once this had been done, a lengthy court battle ensued. Only in 1964 was the way clear for the whole novel to be issued by Grove Press. (The book had been published in Paris in 1959.)
Subsequently, a series of United States Supreme Court decisions made censorship impractical, and for all intents and purposes it has ceased nationally, though local option is sometimes exercised. This cessation permitted the appearance and sale of a mass of sexually explicit
books, films, and magazines. The only restriction that is ubiquitously enforced is the ban on <kiddy porn>, photographs and films of children engaging in sexual acts. In an unlikely de facto alliance, two groups emerged at the end of the 1970s in America to reestablish some form of censorship: one consisting of fundamentalists and other religious conservatives; the other of feminist groups [haha].”
Michael Barry Goodman, Contemporary Literary Censorship: The Case of Burroughs’ Naked Lunch, Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow, 1981;
Rocco, Alcibiades The Schoolboy (1652) (diálogo êmulo de Platão apólogo da pederastia)
“For 5 years he was a captive in Algiers, where he was on surprisingly good terms with a homosexual convert to Islam; he refers several times in his writings to the pederasty that flourished in the Ottoman empire – on his return from Algiers he was accused of unspecified filthy acts. His marriage was unhappy, and women in his works are treated distantly. Like Manuel Azaña, he put a very high value on freedom.
While Cervantes presented the male-female relationship as the theoretical ideal and goal for most people, the use of pairs of male friends is characteristic of his fiction, and questions of gender are often close to the surface. In his masterpiece Don Quixote (1605-15), which includes cross-dressing by both sexes, the middle-aged protagonist has never had, and has no interest in, sexual intercourse with a woman. A boy servant who appears fleetingly at the outset is replaced by the unhappily-married companion Sancho Panza. The two men come to love each other, although the love is not sexual.”
Verbete por Daniel Eisenberg
Louis Combet, Cervantes ou les incertitudes du désir, Lyon: Presses Universitaires, 1982 (review in MLN, 97 , 422-27);
Rosa Rossi, Ascoltare Cervantes, Milan: Riuniti, 1987 (Spanish translation: Escuchar a Cervantes, Valladolid: Ámbito, 1988);
Luis Rosales, Cervantes y la libertad, 2ed., Madrid: Cultura Hispánica, 1985;
Ruth El Saffar, Cervantes and the Androgyne, Cervantes, III (1983);
______. Beyond Fiction: The Recovery of the Feminine in the Novels of Cervantes, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1984.
“The civilization of China emerged from pre-history during the first half of the 2nd millennium B.C. in the valley of the Huang-He (Yellow River), spreading gradually southwards. Over the centuries China has exercised extensive influence on Korea, Japan, and southeast Asia. Inasmuch as Chinese society has traditionally viewed male homosexuality and lesbianism as altogether different, their histories are separate and are consequently treated in sequence in this article.”
“During the latter part of the Zhou, homosexuality appears as a part of the sex lives of the rulers of many states of that era. Ancient records include homosexual relationships as unexceptional in nature and not needing justification or explanation. This tone of prosaic acceptance indicates that these authors considered homosexuality among the social elite to be fairly common and unremarkable. However, the political, ritual and social importance of the family unit made procreation a necessity. Bisexuality therefore became more accepted than exclusive homosexuality, a predominance continuing throughout Chinese history.
The Eastern Zhou produced several figures who became so associated with homosexuality that later generations invoked their names as symbols of homosexual love, much in the same way that Europeans looked to Ganymede, Socrates, and Hadrian. These famous men included Mizi Xia, who offered his royal lover a half-eaten peach, and Long Yang, who compared the fickle [volúvel] lover to a fisherman who tosses back a small fish when he catches a larger one. Rather than adopt scientific terminology, with associations of sexual pathology, Chinese litterateurs preferred the aesthetic appeal of these literary tropes [figures of speech].”
“One incident in the life of Dong Xian became a timeless metaphor for homosexuality. A tersely worded account [relato oral sucinto] relates how Emperor Ai [last Han] was sleeping with Dong Xian one afternoon when he was called to court. Rather than wake up his beloved, who was reclining across the emperor’s sleeve [manga, sobra de tecido], Ai took out a dagger and cut off the end of his garment. When courtiers inquired after the missing fabric, Emperor Ai told them what had happened. This example of love moved his courtiers to cut off the ends of their own sleeves in imitation, beginning a new fashion trend.”
“The Jin dynasty (265-420) poet Zhang Hanbian wrote a glowing tribute to the 15-year-old boy prostitute Zhou Xiaoshi. In it he presents the boy’s life as happy and care-free, <inclined toward extravagance and festiveness, gazing around at the leisurely and beautiful>. A later poet, the Liang dynasty (502-557) figure Liu Zun, tried to present a more balanced view in a poem entitled Many Blossoms. In this piece he shows the dangers and uncertainty associated with a boy prostitute’s life. His Zhou Xiaoshi
<knows both wounds and frivolity
Withholding words, ashamed of communicating.>
Although these poems take opposite perspectives on homosexual prostitution, the appearance of this theme as an inspiration for poetry points to the presence of a significant homosexual world complete with male prostitutes catering [sendo ofertados] to the wealthy.”
“The high profile of male prostitution led the Song rulers to take limited action against it. Many Confucian moralists objected to male prostitution because they saw the sexual passivity of a prostitute as extremely feminizing. In the early 12th century, a law was codified which declared that male prostitutes would receive 100 strokes of a bamboo rod and pay a fine of 50,000 cash. Considering the harsh legal penalties of the period, which included mutilation and death by slicing, this punishment was actually quite lenient. And it appears that the law was rarely if ever enforced, so it soon became a dead letter.”
“Legal intervention peaked in the Qing dynasty (1644-1911) when the Kang Xi Emperor (r. 1662-1723) took steps against the sexual procurement of young boys, homosexual rape, and even consensual homosexual acts.” “it seems that the traditional government laissez-faire attitude toward male sexuality prevented enforcement of the law against consensual homosexual acts.”
“A thirst for knowledge of homosexual history led to the compilation of the anonymous Ming collection Records of the Cut Sleeve (Duan xiu pian) which contains vignettes of homosexual encounters culled from nearly two millennia of sources. This anthology is the first history of Chinese homosexuality, perhaps the first comprehensive homosexual history in any culture, and still serves as our primary guide to China’s male homosexual past.”
“In Fujian province on the South China coast, a form of male marriage developed during the Ming. Two men were united, the older referred to as an <adoptive older brother> (qixiong) and the younger as <adoptive younger brother> (qidi). The younger qidi would move into the qixiong’s household, where he would be treated as a son-in-law by his husband’s parents. Throughout the marriage, which often lasted for 20 years, the qixiong was completely responsible for his younger husband’s upkeep. Wealthy qixiong even adopted young boys who were raised as sons by the couple. At the end of each marriage, which was usually terminated because of the familial responsibilities of procreation, the older husband paid the necessary price to acquire a suitable bride for his beloved qidi.” [!!!]
“The famous 17th century author Li Yu wrote several works featuring male homosexuality and lesbianism. The greatest Chinese work of prose fiction, Dream of the Red Chamber (Honglou meng), features a bisexual protagonist and many homosexual interludes. And the mid-19th century saw the creation of A Mirror Ranking Precious Flowers (Pinhua baojian), a literary masterpiece detailing the romances of male actors and their scholar patrons.”
“Within a few generations, China shifted from a relative tolerance of homosexuality to open hostility. The reasons for this change are complex and not yet completely understood. First, the creation of colloquial baihua literary language removed many potential readers from the difficult classical Chinese works which contained the native homosexual tradition. Also, the Chinese reformers early in the century began to see any divergence between their own society and that of the West as a sign of backwardness. This led to a restructuring of Chinese marriage and sexuality along more Western lines. The uncritical acceptance of Western science, which regarded homosexuality as pathological, added to the Chinese rejection of same-sex love. The end result is a contemporary China in which the native homosexual tradition has been virtually forgotten and homosexuality is ironically seen as a recent importation from the decadent West.
Communist China.In the People’s Republic of China, homosexuality is taken as a sign of bourgeois immorality and punished by <reeducation> in labor camps. Officially the incidence of homosexuality is quite low. Western psychologists, however, have noted that the official reporting of impotence is much higher in mainland China than in the West. It seems that many Chinese men, unfamiliar with homosexual role models, interpret their sexuality solely according to their attraction to women. Nevertheless, a small gay subculture has begun to develop in the major cities since the end of the Maoist era [?]. Fear of discovery and lack of privacy tend to limit the quality and duration of homosexual relationships. And for the vast majority of Chinese living in the conservative country-side, homosexual contacts are much more difficult to come by.” “With the 1997 return of Hong Kong to China approaching, British liberals have supported a last minute repeal of the sodomy law.”
“Traditionally, Chinese people have viewed male homosexuality and lesbianism as unrelated. Consequently, much of the information we have on male homosexuality in China does not apply to the female experience. Piecing together the Chinese lesbian past is frustrated by the relative lack of source material. Since literature and scholarship were usually written by men and for men, aspects of female sexuality unrelated to male concerns were almost always ignored.” “Sex manuals of the period Ming include instructions integrating lesbian acts with heterosexual intercourse as a way of varying the sex lives of men with multiple concubines.”
“Li Yu’s first play, Pitying the Fragrant Companion (Lianxiangban), describes a young married woman’s love for a younger unmarried woman. The married woman convinces her husband to take her talented beloved as a concubine. The 3 then live as a happy ménage-à-trois free from jealousy. A more conventional lesbian love affair is detailed in Dream of the Red Chamber, in which a former actress regularly offers incense to the memory of her deceased beloved.”
The most highly developed form of female relationship was the lesbian marriages formed by the exclusively female membership of Golden Orchid Associations. A lesbian couple within this group could choose to undergo a marriage ceremony in which one partner was designated <husband> and the other <wife>. After an exchange of ritual gifts, a wedding feast attended by female friends served to witness the marriage. These married lesbian couples could even adopt young girls, who in turn could inherit family property from the couple’s parents. This ritual was not uncommon in 19th-century Guangzhou province. Prior to this, the only other honorable way for a woman to remain unmarried was to enter a Buddhist nunnery.” “The existence of Golden Orchid Associations became possible only by the rise of a textile industry in south China which enabled women to become economically independent. The traditional social and economic attachment of women to the home has so far prevented the emergence in modem China of a lesbian community on even so limited a scale as that of male homosexuals.”
Lanling Xiaoxiao Sheng, Golden Lotus ou The Plum [Ameixa] in The Golden Vase (2013) (título original: Jin ping mei)(novela de costumes, considerada o “Lolita” oriental), s/ data precisa (~séc. XVI; ed. por Zhang Zhupo no século seguinte). trad. francesa: La merveilleuse histoire de Hsi Men avec ses six femmes (1), Fleur en fiole d’or (2);
Pai Hsien-yung, The Outsiders (Niezi) (inspirou um filme homônimo, de 1986)
“ORÍGENES” DO MAL II: “By about A.D. 200, the church had come to recognize the texts making up the New Testament as a single canon. After some hesitation, the Hebrew Bible, known to Christians as the Old Testament, was taken from Judaism and also accepted as divinely inspired. From this point onwards, Christian doctrines were elaborated by a group of intellectuals, known as the Fathers of the Church or the Patristic writers, beginning with such figures as Origen, Clement of Alexandria and Tertullian.” “Though they based their exegesis upon the Bible, they were inevitably influenced by philosophical and religious currents of their own time, especially Greek Stoicism and Neo-Platonism and by rival mystery cults such as Manichaeanism and Gnosticism.” “Still today there are differences on such sexually related topics as divorce, celibacy, and so forth between Roman Catholics and members of various eastern branches of Christianity which date from the foundations of Christianity, including Coptic, Nestorian, and various Orthodox Churches. In practice, most of these churches have been more tolerant of homosexuality than the Roman Catholic Church and its Protestant off-shoots.”
RESUMO DAS CONFISSÕES DE UM HOMEM POUCO SANTO
“St. Augustine (d. 430), one of the great scholars of the ancient world, had converted to the austere faith of Manichaeanism after receiving a classical education. It seemed to his mind more suited to his Neo-Platonic and Stoic ideals than the Christianity of his mother. In Manichaean belief, which drew heavily from Zoroastrianism, intercourse leading to procreation was particularly evil because it caused other souls to be imprisoned in bodies, thus continuing the cycle of good versus evil.
Augustine was a member of the Manichaean religion for some 11 years but never reached the stage of the Elect in part because of his inability to control his sexual appetites. He kept a mistress, fathered a child, and according to his own statement, struggled to overcome his lustful appetites everyday by praying: <Give me chastity, and continence, but do not give it yet>. Recognizing his own inability to give up sexual intercourse, Augustine finally arrived at the conclusion that the only way to control his venereal desire was through marriage. He expelled his mistress and his son from his house, became engaged to a young girl not yet of age for wedlock (probably under 12 years of age), and planned a marriage. Unable to abstain from sex, he turned to prostitutes, went through a religious crisis, and in the process became converted to Christianity.”
HA-HA: “All other sex was sinful including coitus within marriage not performed in the proper position (the female on her back and facing the male) and using the proper appendages and orifices (penis in vagina). St. Augustine’s views became the views of the western church centered in Rome.” “In general there was no extensive discussion of homosexuality by any of the early Church Fathers, and most of the references are incidental.”
“The Augustinian views were modified in the 13th century [o que houve nestes 7 séculos além de monges devassos e burros?] by St. Thomas Aquinas, who held that homosexual activities, though similar to other sins of lust, were more sinful because they were also sins against nature. The sins against nature in descending order were (I) masturbation, (2) intercourse in an unnatural position, (3) copulation with the same sex (homosexuality and lesbianism), and (4) sex with non-humans (bestiality).”
One of the key sources in the early medieval Church is the penitential literature. Originally penance had been a way of reconciling the sinner with God and had taken place through open confession. The earliest penitentials put sexual purity at a high premium, and failure to observe the sexual regulations was classified as equal to idolatry (reversion to paganism) and homicide. Ultimately public penance was replaced by private penance and confession which was regulated by the manuals or penitentials designed to guide those who were hearing them. Most of the early penitentials classified homosexual and lesbian activities as equivalent to fornication. Later ones classified such activities as equivalent to adultery although some writers distinguished between interfemoral intercourse and anal intercourse and between fellatio or oral-genital contacts. Anal intercourse was regarded as being the most serious sin.” “Sodomy came to be regarded as the most heinous of sexual offenses, even worse than incest, and as civil law began to take over from canon law, it could be punished as a capital crime.”
Antes só dormia, hoje sodomia.
Só dormia, ou será que prazer também? No lato sensucht
Calvin & Child Harolde: “Catholics denounced Calvin for his supposed pederasty, a charge that was completely unfounded.”
NADA COMO COMER O BRIOCO DUMA INDIAZINHA: “In 1730-31 the great Dutch persecution of sodomites occurred, and in the accompanying propaganda the old charges against Roman Catholicism were revived. In Catholic countries themselves, the dissolution of the Jesuit order in 1773 was preceded by accusations of sodomy.”
Graciano, A Harmony of Discordant Canons (1140)
St. Peter Damián (1007-1072), Liber Gomorrhianus
“The emergence of Christian churches with predominantly gay and lesbian congregations, as well as interest groups within or allied to existing denominations, is a recent phenomenon, centered in the English-speaking world. There are records of homosexual monks, nuns, and priests, especially in the later Middle Ages and in early modern times, but no indication that they even thought of organizing on the basis of their sexual preference. Christian homosexuals drawn to particular parishes, where cliques [panelinhas] occasionally even became a visible segment of the congregation, would not openly avow this shift in the church’s character: they remained closeted gay Christians, so to speak.”
“Some maintain that Jesus – an unmarried man in a Jewish milieu where marriage and procreation were de rigueur even for the religious elite – had a passionate relationship with John, the beloved disciple. Liturgically and sociologically the UFMCC tends to be of a <low church> character, with notable exceptions in some congregations. The evangelical fundamentalist domination of the UFMCC may be regarded as a response to the homophobic vehemence of the mainstream fundamentalist churches, which drives gay Christians out of their fold with a vengeance and forces them into an external redoubt, in contrast to the relatively more tolerant atmosphere, hospitable to internal gay caucuses [panelinhas, partidos], of the more liberal churches.”
“Roman politician, orator, and writer, who left behind a corpus of Latin prose (speeches, treatises, letters) that make him one of the great authors of classical antiquity. Unsuccessful in politics, he was overestimated as a philosopher by the Middle Ages and the Renaissance and underestimated in modern times, but was and is ranked as one of the greatest masters of Latin style. His career as an orator began in 81 B.C., and from the very beginning his speeches revealed his rhetorical gifts. His denunciation ofVerres, the proconsul who had plundered the province of Sicily, opened the way to his election as aedile, praetor, and then consul, but subsequently the intrigues of his enemies led to his banishment from Rome (58/57), followed by his triumphal return. In the civil war he took the side of Pompey and so failed again, but was pardoned by the victorious Caesar, after whose death he launched a rhetorical attack on Mark Antony. The formation of the triumvirate meant that Cicero was to be proscribed by his opponent and murdered by his henchmen.”
“In the last turbulent century of the Roman republic in which he lived, a contrast between the austere virtue of earlier times and the luxury and vice of the present had become commonplace. Also, as we know from the slightly later genre of satirical poetry, a taste for salacious gossip had taken root in the metropolis. In his orations Cicero remorselessly flays the homosexual acts of his enemies, contrasting homosexual love with the passion inspired by women which is <far more of natural inspiration>.”
“Something of the Roman antipathy to Greek paiderasteia transpires from Cicero’s condemnation of the nudity which the Greeks flaunted in their public baths and gymnasia, and from his assertion that the Greeks were inconsistent in their notion of friendship. He pointedly noted: <Why is it that no one falls in love with an ugly youth or a handsome old man?> Effeminacy and passive homosexuality are unnatural and blameworthy in a free man, though Cicero remained enough under the influence of Greek mores to express no negative judgment on the practice of keeping handsome young slaves as minions of their master.” “The Judaic condemnation of homosexuality per se had not yet reached Rome, but the
distinction that had existed in Hellenic law and custom between acts worthy and unworthy of a citizen was adopted and even heightened by the com[cu]bination of appeal to Roman civic virtue and his own rhetorical flair.”
SMEAR CAMPAIGN: “Cicero’s rhetoric thus had two sides: the attempt to discredit opponents by inflammatory imputations of homosexual conduct and of sexual immorality in general – a type of smear to be followed in political life down to modern times”
GENEALOGIA DA PROFILAXIA: “Male circumcision, or the cutting away of the foreskin [prepúcio] of the penis, has been practiced by numerous peoples from remotest antiquity as a religious custom, while to some modern homosexuals it has an aesthetic and erotic significance. It has been speculated that the custom originated somewhere in Africa where water was scarce and the ability to wash was limited. Thus the Western Semites (Israelites, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Arabs, Edomites, Syrians), who lived in an area where water was never really plentiful, also observed the custom, while the Eastem Semites (Assyrians and Babylonians), in an area where water was more abundant, did not circumcise. This is true also of the Greeks and other Aegean peoples who always lived near the water.”
“Jesus never mentioned circumcision, though the Jewish rite was (Luke 2:21) performed upon him on his 8th day as it was with all other males of his community of faith – hence the designation of the calendar in which the first day of the year is January 1 as <circumcision style>. In the early church the party of Paul of Tarsus which opposed circumcision was victorious, and uncircumcised Greeks and Romans poured into the new faith, so that to this day the majority of European men have retained their foreskins. With the coming of the faith of Islam, however, in the VII century the Middle East and North Africa became a stronghold of the practice of circumcision. Hindus and Buddhists avoid it, hence East Asians – and Amerindians – retain their foreskins.”
“In the late 20th century the trend is being reversed in America as more and more medical articles – and some books – have argued that the operation in most cases is needless.”
“There are even groups of men who have retained their foreskins (and others who admire them); these individuals with generous or pronounced <curtains> are in demand.”
Bud Berkeley & Joe Tiffenbach, Circumcision: Its Past, Its Present, and Its Future, San Francisco: Bud Berkeley, 1983-84;
Rosemary Romberg, Circumcision: The Painful Dilemma, South Hadley, MA: Bergin & Garvey, 1985;
Edward Wallerstein, Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy, New York: Springer Publishing Co., 1980.
“When there are no children to raise there is more discretionary income, so that adopting a homosexual lifestyle provides a margin for class enhancement.” “An established gay man or lesbian may put resources which parents would use for raising the status of their children into helping a lover-protegé. The mentor may also provide private lessons in manners and business acumen.” “Curiously, some parents seem to tolerate same-sex alliances by their offspring more easily than those that cross class or racial lines. § Internalizing the folk belief that homosexuals are more <artistic>, some gay men cultivate musical, theatrical, and culinary tastes that are above their <station> – and above their income. Acquisition of these refined preferences, together with <corrected> speech patterns, hinders easy communication with former peers, though there are many factors that work for geographical and psychological distance between homosexuals, on the one hand, and their families and original peer groups, on the other. Given their relative freedom, some individuals may be inclined to experiment with <class bending>, [sinuosidade de classe] sometimes with paradoxical results.”
“There is class, and there is class fantasy.”
CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA
“Greek church father. Born in Athens, probably of pagan and peasant ancestry, he is not to be confused with Clement, bishop of Rome, author of the New Testament epistle. After his conversion, Clement of Alexandria traveled widely to study under Christians, finally under the learned Pantaenus in Alexandria. Of the early Fathers, he had the most thorough knowledge of Greek literature. He quoted Homer, Hesiod, the dramatists, and (most of all) Platonic and Stoic philosophers. Sometime before 200 he succeeded Pantaenus, whom he praised for his orthodoxy, as head of the catechetical school at Alexandria, but in 202 he had to flee the persecution unleashed by the emperor Septimius Severus and perhaps died in Asia Minor.”
“Although Clement’s christianity has been criticized as being too Hellenized, his serene hope and classical learning helped convert the upper classes. His pseudo-Platonic doctrine that homosexuality was particularly noxious because it was <against nature> served to combine that strand of classical philosophy with Hellenistic Jewish homophobia, most trenchantly exemplified by the Alexandrian philosopher Philo Judaeus (20 B.C.-A.D. 45), to justify persecution of sodomites. He thus preceded and stimulated the homophobia of the Christian emperors, from Constantine’s sons to Justinian, and of the two most influential Fathers, John Chrysostom and Augustine of Hippo.”
“that there is a psychological affinity between religious ministry and hemophilia”Edward Carpenter
“The patrician John XII (938-964) went so far as to model himself on the scandalous Roman emperor Heliogabalus, holding homosexual orgies in the papal palace – a practice imitated by Benedict IX (1021-ca. 1052).” “paradoxically the enforcement of celibacy on priests and even attempts to impose it on those in lesser orders increased the danger of homosexuality.”
“Friars, who unlike the monks were free to wander among the laity without much supervision, became notorious as seducers of boys as well as women, whose confessions they often heard to the disgruntlement [desabono] of parish priests. Many homosexual clergy, then as now, confessed to one another and were formally absolved. Indeed, the confessional at times became the locus of seduction.”
“Philip IV of France charged Boniface VIII not only with heresy, usury, and simony, but with sodomy and masturbation as well.”
“The Renaissance in Italy, with its revival of classical antiquity and love of art, saw a number of popes who were interested in their own sex. Among them were the anti-pope John XXIII (d. 1419), who began his career as a pirate. Entering the clergy he quickly acquired the reputation of an unblushing libertine. The humanist pope Pius II (1405-1464) watched boys run naked in a race at Pienza, noting a boy <with fair hair and a beautiful body, though disfigured with mud>. The vain Venetian Paul II (1417-1471) toyed with adopting the name Formosus. Affecting the most lavish costumes, he was attacked by his enemies as <Our Lady of Pity>. His successor, Sixtus IV (1414-1482), made his mark as an art patron, erecting the Sistine chapel. He also elevated to the cardinalate a number of handsome young men. Julius II (1443-1513), another art-loving pope, provoked such scandal that he was arraigned under various charges, including that of sodomy, but he managed to survive the attempt to depose him. His successor, the extravagant Medici Leo X (1475-1521), became embroiled in intrigues to advance favorite nephews, a hobby that strained the treasury to the utmost. Julius III (1487-1555), who had presided over the Council of Trent before his pontificate, was nonetheless sometimes seen at official functions with catamites [<coroinhas>], one of whom he made a cardinal.”
“The anticlerical literature of the last decades of that century delighted in exposing cases in which a clergyman had committed a sexual offense, to the point where in 1911 the Pope had to issue the motu proprio decree Quamvis diligenter forbidding the Catholic laity to bring charges against the clergy before secular courts. This step unilaterally abolished the principle of the equality of all citizens before the law established by the French Revolution, reinstating the <benefit of clergy> of the Middle Ages. The anticlerical literature of that period still needs study for the light that it can shed on the homosexual subculture of the clerical milieux.”
The Bible for Believers and Unbelievers (1922)(clássico anticlerical russo)
The Rule of St. Benedict, chapter 22.
Transcrição completa do capítulo 22 das regras de São Benedito (regulamento dos monges na alta idade média):
“CHAPTER XXII: HOW THE MONKS ARE TO SLEEP
Let them sleep singly in separate beds. Let them receive bedding suitable to their manner of life, at the discretion of the abbot. If it can be done, let all sleep in one room: but if their number does not allow of this, let them repose by tens or by twenties with their seniors who have charge of them. Let a candle burn continually in the dormitory until morning. Let them sleep clothed and girded with girdles or cords, but let them not have knives at their sides while they sleep, lest by chance while dreaming they wound a sleeper; and let them be monks always ready; and upon the signal being given let them rise without delay and hasten one after the other, yet with all gravity and decorum, to be ready in good time for the Work of God. Let not the younger brethren have their beds by themselves, but among those of the seniors: and let them be allowed gently to encourage one another as they rise for the Work of God, because some may feel drowsy and listless.”
The Infernal Machine (peça)
“A happy childhood is a bad preparation for contact with human beings.”
“A current Russian term for a gay man is golubchik, from goluboy, <blue>, evidently through association with the <blue blood> of the aristocracy of the Old Régime.”
“According to Havelock Ellis, one could not safely walk down the streets of late 19th century New York wearing a red tie without being accosted, since this garment was then the universal mark of the male prostitute.” “Because of the <scarlet woman>, the great Whore of Babylon of the book of Revelation, that color has acquired a strong association with prostitution and adultery”
“In American culture the word lavender – a blend of red and blue (as in <lavender lover>, The Lavender Lexicon, etc.) – almost speaks for itself.”
“The mid-1980s saw public display at rallies and marches of a rainbow Gay Pride Flag, consisting of six parallel stripes ranging from bright red to deep purple. The juxtaposition of colors stands for the diversity of the gay/lesbian community with regard to ethnicity, gender, and class – perhaps also connoting, in the minds of some, the coalition politics of the Rainbow Alliance headed by Jesse Jackson.”
“The first true comic strips were introduced in 1897 as a circulation-building device in the Sunday supplements of the Hearst newspapers. The now-familiar pulp comic book was a creation of the Depression: the first commercial example is Famous Funnies of 1934. Although these strips generally affirmed middle-class values, and certainly contained not the slightest overt indication of sex, they were regularly denounced by pundits as a pernicious influence on the young.”
“Batman, appearing in 1939, featured the adventures of a playboy detective and his teenage ward, Robin. Although the relationship is portrayed as a simple mentor-protegé one, some teenage male readers were able to project something stronger into it. This aspect was certainly flirted with in the campy television off-shoot beginning in 1966, though this series reflects a much changed cultural climate. In 1941 there appeared Wonder-woman, featuring an Amazon with special powers living on an all-woman island. This strip – contrary to the expressed wishes of its creators – served as a focus for lesbian aspirations. In the 1970s it was rediscovered by the women’s movement as a proto-feminist statement.
In the late 1940s Blade drew several illustrated stories, including The Barn and Truck Hiker, that can be considered predecessors of the gay comics. Circulated underground, they have been officially published only in recent years. Somewhat later the wordless strips of supermacho types created by Tom of Finland began to circulate in Europe.
It was the American counterculture of the 1960s, however, which first made possible the exploration of taboo subjects in a context of crumbling censorship restrictions. In 1964 a Philadelphia gay monthly, Drum, began serializing Harry Chess by Al Shapiro (A. Jay). Modeled on a popular television series, Harry Chess was both macho and campy, though explicit sex scenes were veiled. In the 1970s no-holds-barred examples appeared drawn by such artists as Bill Ward, Sean, and Stephen (Meatman).”
“A few gays and lesbians report no memory of a coming out process; they always considered themselves homosexual and were never <in the closet>. Others have reported a sudden revelation of their own homosexuality which does not fit into any theory of stages but has brought them from apparently heterosexual to comfortably homosexual virtually overnight.”
“The self-help literature for gay and lesbian youth is quite explicit in designating parents as the crucial factor in the youth’s coming out process. Those who do not come out to their family, according to G.B. MacDonald, become <half-members of the family unit: afraid and alienated, unable ever to be totally open and spontaneous, to trust or be trusted… This sad stunting of human potential breeds stress for gay people and their families alike – stress characterized by secrecy, ignorance, helplessness, and distance.> The scientific literature, however, has largely ignored the role of parents, having centered on gay and lesbian adults.”
Achilles Tatius, Leucippe and Clitophon
Pseudo-Lucian, Affairs of the Heart
CONTRARY SEXUAL FEELING
“the linguistic remnant of the first, uncertain psychiatric attempt to grapple with the problem of homosexuality.”
“Apparently the term counterculture is an adaptation of the slightly earlier <adversary culture>, an expression coined by the literary critic Lionel Trilling (1905-1975). In many respects the counterculture constituted a mass diffusion – fostered by diligent media exploitation – of the prefigurative beat/hippie phenomenon. As American involvement in the Vietnam War increased, in the wake of opposition to it the counterculture shifted from the gentle <flower-child> phase to a more aggressive posture, making common cause with the New Left, which was not, like the radicalism of the 30s, forced by economic crisis to focus on issues of unemployment and poverty. Of course radical political leaders were accustomed to decry the self-indulgence of the hippies, but their followers, as often as not, readily succumbed to the lure of psychedelic drugs and the happy times of group togetherness accompanied by ever present rock music.”
MESSIANISMO EPIDÊMICO: “The counterculture shamelessly embraced ageism: <Don’t trust anyone over thirty.> Observing this precept cut young people off from the accumulated experience and wisdom of sympathetic elders. Moreover, it meant that the adherents of the movement themselves quickly became back numbers as they crossed over the 30-year line. In regard to gay adherents, the distrust of older people tended to reinforce the ageism already present in their own subculture. To be sure, the full force of such problematic effects has become evident only in retrospect. Although outsiders, and some insiders as well, exaggerated the fusion of the counterculture and the New Left, still the convergence of massive cultural innovation with hopes for fundamental political change gave the young generation a heady sense of imminent revolution.”
“The psychiatrist Thomas Szasz and others correctly perceived the link between the campaign to decriminalize marijuana and the efforts to reform sex laws.” “many assumed that homosexuals were essentially counterculturist, leftist, and opposed root and branch to the established order. Subsequent observation has shown, not surprisingly perhaps, that a majority of gay men and lesbians were (and are) liberal-reformist and even conservative, rather than revolutionary in then-overall political and social outlook.”
“After the turn of the century Crowley’s public career began, and he was regularly attacked in the press as <The Great Beast> and <The Wickedest Man in the World>.”
Raulseixismo: <There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.>
“In a 1910 memoir Aleister Crowley proclaimed, <I shall fight openly for that which no Englishman dare defend, even in secret – sodomy! At school I was taught to admire Plato and Aristotle, who recommend sodomy to youths – I am not so rebellious as to oppose their dictum; and in truth there seems to be no better way to avoid the contamination of woman and the morose pleasures of solitary vice.>”
“he advanced beyond the grade of Magus to the supreme status of Ipsissimus.” E o Quico?
“Scarcely known today outside occult circles, Crowley is an extravagant instance of the concern with heterodox religion that has flourished among some male homosexuals who could find no peace within established Christianity, and more recently among female adherents of <the craft>. Through his voluminous writings Crowley foreshadowed the emergence of the <Age of Aquarius>.”
Israel Regardie, The Eye in the Triangle: An Interpretation of Aleister Crowley, St. Paul: Llewellen Publications, 1970.
Nicole Ariana, How to Pick up Men, New York: Bantam, 1972;
Mark Freedman & Harvey Mayes, Loving Man, New York: Hark, 1976, chapter 2;
John A. Lee, Getting Sex, Toronto: General, 1978 [Tinder on paper for human beings as archaic as those from a century ago];
Publius Ovid, Art of Love [~1A.D., obra seminal do “flerte” e “sondagens de sexo casual”, homo e heteronormativas!]
“The largest island of the Antilles chain, home to 10 million Spanish-speaking people” Para 2017, o censo ainda não aponta população superior a 11.5 milhões.
“The British, French, and Dutch seized islands from the Spanish or colonized vacant ones as naval bases or sugar plantations; like the pirates they seldom brought women along. All 3 European powers were involved in the notorious triangular trade, shipping molasses or rum to Europe, guns and trinkets from there to Africa, and slaves back to the West Indies.”
“Cuba began to excel in sugar production after 1762. Havana became a glittering metropolis, rivaling New York and Rio de Janeiro, by 1800. The slave population, including huge numbers of males imported for work in the cane fields or molasses manufacturing, grew from fewer than 40,000 in 1770 to over 430,000 seventy years later. The census of 1841 reported that more than half the population was non-white (black and mixed blood) and that 43% were slaves. Males outnumbered females by 2 to 1 in the center and west and were just equal in the east. Other islands in the Caribbean had even greater sexual imbalances. Documentation for the homosexuality that must have abounded is scarce but the earlier prevalence can be assumed from attitudes and customs that still survive.”
“With Spain’s adoption of the Napoleonic Code in 1889, homosexuality was decriminalized 3 years after the abolition of slavery.”
“During World War I, Europe was closed to North Americans and Cuba, especially Havana, became a resort for the more adventurous. Prosperity increased with a rise in commodity prices. Also, the Prohibition in the United States after 1920 left Cuba as an oasis where liquor still flowed freely. Casino gambling and prostitution were also legal. A favorite port of call of cruise ships [pun intended!], Havana flourished as a mecca for pleasure-seekers.”
“The post-war collapse of commodity prices was to some extent offset by tourism. Everything was for sale in Havana under the dictator Fulgencio Batista, whose 1952 coup ousted an outwardly democratic but venal and nepotistic predecessor.
Old Havana had gay bars. Moral laxity, characteristic of the slave-rooted Caribbean economy, the Napoleonic Code, and the weakness of the Catholic Church (which was mainly Spanish, urban and upper class) produced an environment where gays were only mildly persecuted and could buy protection from corrupt officials. Drugs, especially marijuana, which flourished throughout the Caribbean, were available in Cuba long before they won popularity in the United States.”
“Exploiting popular revulsion against continuing political corruption as well as resentment of the diminishing but still important American domination, Fidel Castro led an ill-assorted group of liberals, patriots, and Marxists, including some gays, to victory over Batista in 1959. Only after he came to power did the United States realize that Castro was an avowed Communist. The American Central Intelligence Agency then tried and failed to assassinate him. His triumph was sealed by the missile crisis of 1962 when Khrushchev agreed to withdraw the missiles in return for Kennedy’s promise never to try to invade Cuba.”
“Soviet hostility toward homosexuality since 1934, when Stalin restored the penal laws against male homosexuals, combined with traditional Latin American machismo and Catholic homophobia, made the existence of Cuban homosexuals wretched and oppressive. To prevent their <contamination> of youth, thousands of gays in the 1960s were placed in work camps known as Military Units to Increase Production (UMAP). Although the camps were abolished by the end of the decade, other forms of discrimination continued. Article 359 of the Cuban penal code prohibits public homosexuality. Violations are punished with a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 20 years. Parents must discourage their children from homosexuality or report their failure to officials as Articles 355-58 mandate. Articles 76-94 punish with 4 years imprisonment sexual deviation regarded by the government as contrary to the spirit of Socialism.”
“The gifted playwright and fiction writer Virgilio Piñera (1912-1967) returned from Argentina in 1957 and after Castro’s triumph worked for several of the newspapers of the regime. On October 11, 1961, he was arrested and jailed for homosexuality. Che Guevara personally denounced him.”
Allen Young, Gays under the Cuban Revolution
“The dandy has been since antiquity the man who prides himself on being the incarnation of elegance and of male fashion. The word itself stems from the Romantic period in the 19th century, when the character type reached its apogee; England and France were the principal countries in which it flourished. Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867) was one of the first to perceive that the type was not limited to the age just preceding his own, but had emerged across the centuries in some celebrated historical figures. Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly (1808-1889) wrote an Essay on Dandyism and George Brummel (1845), dealing with Beau Brummell (1778-1840), the most famous English representative of the dandy in the London of George IV.
History of the Type. Ancient Greece saw two classical specimens of the dandy: Agathon and Alcibiades. In Plato’s Symposium Agathon is a poet and tragedian, not merely handsome, but obsessed with the most trivial details of his wardrobe. Aristophanes shows him using a razor to keep his cheeks as smooth and glistening as marble, wearing sumptuous clothing in the latest Ionian fashion. Later in the same dialogue Alcibiades also enters the stage, the most dazzling figure of the jeunesse dorée of Athens, richer and more influential than Agathon, and never sparing any expenditure that would enhance his renown.”
“Another aesthete of this era, Oscar Wilde, affected a particularly striking costume when he made a lecture tour of the United States, capitalizing on a character featured in the Gilbert and Sullivan opera Patience (1881).”
“Rationale. The relation of the dandy to male homosexuality is complicated. As a rule the homosexual – more than the male who is attracted to women – feels the need to distinguish his person in some way, is more conscious of the world of male fashion and more likely to be narcissistically preoccupied with his image. Naturally not all the dandies of the past were homosexual or bisexual, and an element of leisure class self-demarcation and snobbery enters into the picture. Since it is usually the male of the species whom nature makes physically more noteworthy, the male-female antithesis in style of dress that has prevailed in Western culture since the French Revolution reverses the immemorial state of affairs. The notion that only a woman may be preoccupied with her wardrobe and that a man should dress simply and even unobtrusively is of recent date.”
“As a youth he had a profound spiritual experience in an encounter with the young Beatrice Portinari; after her death he submerged himself in the study of philosophy and poetry. In 1302 Dante was banished from Florence, pursuing his literary career in various other cities of Italy.”
“The presence in both the Inferno and the Purgatorio of groups of <sodomites> has given rise to a series of debates over the centuries. These passages must be interpreted in the larger context of the great poem’s situations and personnel.” “The sodomites of the Inferno (cantos 15 and 16) are seen running under a rain of fire, condemned never to stop if they wish to avoid the fate of being nailed to the ground for a hundred years with no chance of shielding themselves against the flames. Having recognized Dante, Brunetto Latini (ca. 1212-1294) called him to speak with him, voicing an important prophecy of Dante’s future. In describing his fellow sufferers, Latini mentioned a number of famous intellectuals, politicians, and soldiers.
In the Purgatorio (canto 26) the sodomites appear in a different context – together with lustful heterosexuals. The two categories travel in opposite directions, yelling out the reason for their punishment.
How can one account for the striking deference and sympathy that Dante shows for the sodomites? This matter began to puzzle commentators only a few years after the poet’s death.”
“Dante’s education took place in the 13th century when Italy was beginning to change its attitudes toward homosexual behavior. Conduct which had been a transgression condemned by religion but viewed with indulgence by everyday morality assumed increasing seriousness in the eyes of the laity. For Dante it was still possible – as it had commonly been through the first half of the 13th century – to separate human and divine judgment with respect to sodomy.”
IDADE DAS LUZES E O BURACO ESCURO: “For Dante’s commentators sodomy was a sin of such gravity that it was inconceivable for them to treat with respect men seared with such <infamy>.”
“That Dante had spoken of Brunetto Latini and the sodomites with too much sympathy because he too shared their feelings was the conclusion of one anonymous commentator of the 14th century. Another wild suggestion is that the shameless Latini had made an attempt on Dante’s own virtue, and that hence Dante’s gentle words are in reality sarcasm that must be understood <in the opposite sense> (Guiniforto dei Bargigi; 1406-ca. 1460). Then, foreshadowing a thesis that would be favored by medical opinion in the 12th century, it was suggested that there were two types of sodomites, those by <choice> and those who are such by <necessity>.”
“The debate on Dante’s motives has continued until our own day. In 1950Andre Pezard devoted a whole book, Dante sous la pluie de feu, to an effort to show that the sin for which Brunetto and his companions were being punished was sodomy not in the usual sense, but in an allegorical one: sodomie spirituelle, which in Brunetto’s case meant having used the French language as a medium for one of his works.”
“The authoritative Encyclopedia Dantesca has sought to bring the conflict to an end, taking adequate account of Dante’s indulgent judgment as the correct key for solving the supposed <enigma> of the band of sodomites. As regards the reason for Brunetto Latini’s presence among the sodomites, Avalle D’Arco’s recent confirmation of the attribution to him of a long love poem directed to a man, S’eo son distretto inamoramente, shows that it was probably on the basis of facts that were publicly known in Dante’s time that he was consigned to Hell.” Aposto o cu que você já deu o cu.
DICKINSON, EMILY (1830-1886)
“American poet. After brief periods at Amherst Academy and Holyoke Female Seminary, she settled into an outwardly uneventful life keeping house for her family. Dickinson never married. The real events in her life are her writings, which have assumed classic status in American literature.”
“These homoerotic poems are never joyous, but that is to be expected in a society where heterosexual marriage was virtually believed inevitable and there was little possibility of two unrelated women establishing a life together if they were not wealthy through independent inheritance.”
“Greek god associated with wine and emotional exuberance. Although the name occurs in linear B tablets [?] from the end of the second millennium B.C., his figure absorbed additional elements from Thrace and the East in the following centuries. Dionysus, called Bacchus in Latin, was the son of Zeus and a mortal, Semele. When his mother unwisely besought Zeus to reveal himself in his true form, she was incinerated, but the embryo of her son escaped destruction. Zeus then inserted it into his own thigh and carried the child to term. This quality of being <twice born>, once from a woman and once from a man, points to the ambiguity of the god, who though male had effeminate traits. In literary and artistic representations, he sometimes served as a vehicle for questioning sex roles, otherwise strongly polarized in ancient Greece.
According to the late-antique writer Nonnus, Dionysus fell in love with a Phrygian boy, Ampelos, who became his inseparable companion. When the boy was killed in a bull-riding accident, the grief-stricken Dionysus turned him into a vine. As a result, the practices of vine cultivating and grape harvesting, of wine making and drinking, commemorate this deeply felt pederastic relationship: in honoring the vine (ampelos in Greek), one honors the god through his beloved.
In historic times Dionysus attracted a cult following consisting largely of women, the Bacchae or maenads. During the ritual followers abandoned their houses and work to roam about in the mountains, hair and clothing in disarray, and liberally imbibing wine, normally forbidden to women. At the height of their ecstasy they would seize upon an animal or even a child, tear it to pieces, and devour the uncooked flesh, by ingesting which they sought to incorporate the god and his powers within themselves. From a sociological point of view, the Bacchic cult is a <religion of the oppressed>, affording an ecstatic relief to women, whose status was low. Occurring only once during the year, or once every two years, these Dionysiac rites were bracketed off from the normal life of the Greek polis, suggesting comparison with such later European customs as the feast of fools, the carnival, the charivari, and mardi gras.
The maenads assume a major role in Euripides’ tragedy, The Bacchae (406 BC). Accompanied by his female followers, Dionysus appears in Thebes as a missionary. Unwisely, King Pentheus insults and arrests the divine visitor; after he has been rendered mad and humiliated, the transgressor is dismembered by the maenads. Interpretations of the play differ: a warning of the consequences of emotional excess versus a reaffirmation of the enduring presence of humanity’s irrational side. The subject probably attracted Euripides as a phenomenon of individual and group psychology in its own right, but it is unlikely that he intended it as a forecast of modern gay liberation in the <faery spirituality> mode, as Arthur Evans has argued. Inasmuch as the sexuality of The Bacchae was not pederastic, the Greek audience would not have seen the play as homosexual (a concept foreign to their mentality), but rather as challenging gender-role assumptions about men and women, whatever their sexual orientation. That the parts of the maenads were taken by men was not exceptional: women never appeared on the Greek stage.
Bacchanalian rites were introduced into Rome during the Republic. Men joined women in the frenzied gatherings, and (according to the historian Livy) there was more debauchery among the men with each other than with the women. Apart from their orgiastic aspects, the rites caused concern because they crossed class lines, welcoming citizens, freed men and slaves alike. Condemned as a subversive foreign import, the Senate suppressed the Bacchanalia in 186 BC, but they evidently were soon revived. Roman sarcophagi of the 2nd and 3rd century of our era show Bacchic scenes, projecting hopes for an afterlife spent in Dionysic bliss. In its last phases the cult of Dionysus emerged as an other-worldly mystery religion, showing affinities with Mithraism, the religion of Isis, and Christianity. Meeting now behind closed doors, members of the sect recognized one another by passwords and signs.
Although the early Christians regarded all pagan worship as demonic, they were not averse to purloining the Bacchic wine harvest imagery for their own sarcophagi and mosaics. Some Bacchic reminiscences recur in drinking songs of medieval goliardic poets, notably the Carmina Burana.”
“At the end of the 16th century the flamboyant bisexual painter Caravaggio created a notably provocative image of Bacchus-Dionysus (Florence, Uffizi Gallery).” Veja pintura no verbete do pintor mais acima.
“The most influential latter-day evocation of the god occurs in The Birth of Tragedy (1872) of Friedrich Nietzsche, who exalted the category of the Dionysiac as an antidote for excessive rationality in the interpretation of ancient Greece and, by implication, in modern life as well.
Nietzsche’s ideas were modernized and correlated with anthropology and psychoanalysis by the classical scholar E.R. Dodds, who in turn influenced the poet W.H. Auden. Together with his lover, Chester Kallman, Auden turned Euripides’ play into an opera libretto entitled The Bassarids.”
Karl Kerenyi, Dionysus: Archetypal Image of Indestructible Life, London: Routledge, 1976.
“When a dream has homosexual content, the hermeneutic process is complicated by the ethical assumptions of the dreamer and the interpreter, which reflect the attitudes of society toward same-sex experience.
To understand their dream experiences human beings have formulated a lore to which the ancients gave the name oneirocritical. Because the ancient world accepted homosexual interest and activity as part of human sexuality, the dream interpreters of the eastern Mediterranean cultures could calmly explain the homoerotic episodes in dreams in terms of their overall system of signs and meanings and without anxiety. Such was the work of Artemidorus of Daldis (middle of the 2nd century), which alludes to pédérastie and homosexual dream sequences and assigns them a specific, often prophetic meaning. Not so the Christian Middle Ages; the literature of dreams became exclusively heterosexual because the taboo with which theology had tainted sexual attraction to one’s own sex imposed a censorship that is only now being lifted.”
“It should be noted that there has never been a country or society in which unrestricted use of all psychoactive drugs has been permitted over any period of time.”
“In some users hallucinogens cause terrifying experiences; psychological problems can be exacerbated, and brain damage caused. The action of stimulants is often followed by a compensatory negative experience through which the body restores its equilibrium.”
“Society can tolerate drug use if it is encapsulated within an artistic, recreational, religious, or therapeutic context; while some are able to so control their usagé, for many that is a daunting or impossible condition, at least in our present culture”
“education is more effective than prohibition. Exaggeration of drugs’ harmful effects reduces respect for law, overwhelms the courts and prisons, inhibits research on any therapeutic use of drugs, makes drugs of controlled strength and purity unavailable, gives drugs the glamour of the forbidden, and encourages progression to ever more dangerous yet legally equal substances. As with alcohol during America’s Prohibition (1920-33), the supply of illegal drugs has become a very profitable industry, and not a passive or benign one. Foreigners who supply drugs sometimes justify their actions to themselves and their countrymen as a means of striking back at the political and economic power of the United States.”
“during the 1960s, there were a considerable number of reports of people becoming aware of homoeroticism for the first time while under the influence of LSD especially. Drugs have also been used by musicians, artists, and writers who claim that the substances help them create, although this claim is controversial, perhaps because if substantiated it would be a powerful argument for drug use.”
“The use of hashish (cannabis), eaten in sweets rather than smoked, is found in the Bible (Song of Songs 5:1; I Samuel 14:25-45), and there is evidence of psychic use of hemp (marijuana), from which hashish is made, from pre-historic times. Herodotus, for example, reports its popularity among the Scythians. However, widespread use of hashish begins in Islam in the 12th and 13th centuries. While the Koran prohibited wine, which because of distribution costs was somewhat more expensive than today, it was silent on hashish, which was also much less expensive. There was debate about whether the Koran’s silence was to be taken as approval, or whether prohibition was to be inferred from the treatment of wine; still, as long as it remained a minority indulgence it was tolerated, as wine usually was. Hashish users became a subculture; in particular it is linked to the mystical Sufis, who made a cult and ritual of its use. However, almost every Islamic poet from the 13th to the 16th centuries produced at least some playful poems on hashish, although wine poetry is much more abundant.”
“Hashish was thought to cause effeminacy, a preference for the passive sexual role, and a loss of interest in sex. However, it was also prized as the drug of scholars and lovers of young men, and an aid in seduction of the latter. Turkish soldiers frequently ate hashish together before going into battle.
Coffee was introduced to Europe in the 17th century from the Turkish empire. Both within Islam and in Europe coffee was at first a similarly controversial drug, subject to occasional legal restriction or suppression. Its use in coffee-houses, later cafés, was typical of intellectuals and dissidents.”
“The first half of the 20th century was characterized by a wave of reaction against drugs and the establishment of legal controls throughout Westem Europe and North America. However, the tensions of the 1960s, against a backdrop of the Holocaust and the invention and use of the atomic bomb, brought on a new wave of drug use. The hedonistic use of cannabis increased greatly; its enthusiasts promoted it as an aid to sensual and sexual enjoyment. The Beat generation, especially William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, had already turned to potent psychedelics as a means of self-improvement; they became part of the short-lived counterculture of the late 1960s. The discovery of psychedelics was in part due to progress in anthropology and archeology. The use by native peoples of mescaline (peyote), psilocybin (mushrooms), and other psychedelics became known, and the possible role of such substances in visions and oracles of the ancient Mediterranean world was proposed by scholars. The hallucinogenic properties of the most potent psychedelic yet known, lysergic acid diethylamine-25 (LSD), were discovered in 1943” “until it became too controversial, it was manufactured by a pharmaceutical company for research in psychotherapeutic treatment.”
“The gay bar remains the only gay institution in many American communities, as it was almost everywhere until the 1970s.”
“Poppers are a vasodilator of transitory effect, and cause a <high> from a drop in blood pressure; users say that the intensity and/or duration of orgasm is increased, that muscles (such as throat and anal sphincters) and gag reflexes are relaxed, and that feelings of increased union or <melting> with the sex partner result. Many users report that continued use (a single inhalation produces effects only for a few minutes) inhibits erections, while other users seem unaffected. Likewise, some users say the poppers encourage passivity and complete relaxation, while others report no such effect. Headaches and dizziness are sometimes reported as side effects.” “In the early 1980s poppers were accused of being a co-factor in the development of AIDS, and they were made illegal in some areas, although the accusation remains unproven.”
EFFEMINACY, HISTORICAL SEMANTICS OF
“In reading older texts it is important to bear these differences in mind, for the term effeminate can be used slightingly of a womanizer [mulherengo] as well as of a <womanish> man.
The ancient Greeks and Romans sharply differentiated the active male homosexual, the paiderastes (in the New Testament arsenokoites, literally <man-layer>), from the passive partner, the cinaedus or pathicus (New Testament Greek malakos; Hebrew, rakha). The Greeks also sometimes used the term androgynos, <man-woman>, to stigmatize the passive homosexual. Beginning with the Old Attic comedies of Aristophanes, the passive is a stock figure of derision and contempt, the active partner far less so. Because of the military ideals on which ancient societies were founded, passivity and softness in the male were equated with cowardice and want of virility. A seeming exception is the god Dionysus – whose effeminate characteristics are, however, probably an import from the non-Greek East.
In ancient Rome the terms mollis (soft) and effeminatus acquired special connotations of decadence and enervating luxury. By contrast the word virtus meant manliness. The Roman satirists took sardonic delight in flagellating the vices of luxury that were rampant among the upper classes of a nation that, once rude and war-like, had succumbed to the temptations that followed its successful conquest and plunder of the entire ancient world. The classical notion of effeminacy as the result of luxury, idleness, and pampered self-indulgence is thus far removed from the claim of some gay liberationists today to kinship with the exploited and down-trodden.”
“The old Icelandic literature stemming from medieval Scandinavia documents the condemnation of the argr, the cowardly, unwar-like effeminate (compare Modern German arg, <bad>). The Latin term mollities (softness) entered early Christian and medieval writings, but often with reference to masturbation. It may be that the 18th-century English term molly for an effeminate homosexual is a reminiscence of Latin mollis.”
“In the 16th century the French monarch Henri III assembled an entourage of favorites whose name mignon connotes effeminacy and delicacy. In French also the original meaning of bardache was the passive partner of the active bougre. English writings of the 17th and 18th century frequently denounced foppery [dandismo], sometimes homosexual but more often heterosexual.”
“Restoration times also witnessed the popularity of the self-referencing habit of male homosexuals adopting women’s names: Mary, Mary-Anne, Molly, Nance or Nancy, and Nelly. The habit occurs in other languages as well – Janet in Flemish; Checca (from Francesca) in Italian; Maricón (from Maria) in Spanish; and Adelaida in Portuguese.”
“19th-century English witnessed a semantic shift of a number of terms originally applied to women to provide opprobrious designations of male homosexuals. Thus gay had the meaning of a loose woman, prostitute; faggot, a slatternly woman –, and queen (or quean), a trollop. Even today the popular mind tends to the view that gay men seek to imitate women, or even become women –, the considerable number of unstereotypical, masculine homosexuals are not taken into account.”
“Termagant and virago, though pejorative, do not suggest variance of sexual orientation. The girl who is a tomboy has always been treated more indulgently than the boy who is a sissy.”
“Men who cross-dress as women are of two kinds. Some go to great lengths to make the simulation credible, an effort that may be a prelude to transsexualism. In other instances the simulation is imperfect, a kind of send-up. Although some feminists have interpreted such cross-dressing exercises as mockery of women, it is more likely that they signify a questioning of gender categories. In any event, transvestism is not normally held to lie within the province of effeminacy, which is thought to be the adjunction of feminine traits in a person otherwise fully recognizable as masculine.”
Hans Herter, Reallexikon fur Antike und Christentum, 4 (1959).
“Traditionally the pharaohs married their half-sisters, a custom that other peoples considered curious. Self-confident in their cherished habits and customs, the Egyptians nonetheless cherished a distinct sense of privacy, which restricted discussion of erotic themes in the documents that have come down to modern times. Most of our evidence stems from temples and tombs, where a full record of everyday life could scarcely be expected. Unfortunately, Egypt had no law codes comparable to those known from ancient Mesopotamia.”
“The realm of mythology provides several instances of homosexual behavior. In order to subordinate him, the god Seth attempted to sodomize his brother Horus, but the latter foiled him, and tricked Seth into ingesting some of his (Horus’s) own semen. Seth then became pregnant. In another myth the ithyphallic god Min anally assaulted an enemy, who later gave birth to the god Thoth. Both these stories present involuntary receptive homosexuality as a humiliation, but the act itself is not condemned; in the latter incident the god of wisdom is born as a result. (In another myth the high god engenders offspring parthenogenetically by masturbation.) While it is sometimes claimed that the ancient Egyptians were accustomed to sodomize enemies after their defeat on the battlefield, the evidence is equivocal.”
“In what is surely history’s first homosexual short story, King Pepy II Neferkare (2355-2261) makes nocturnal visits to have sex with his general Sisinne. This episode is significant as an instance of androphilia – sex between two adult men – rather than the pederasty that was dominant in the ancient world. From a slightly earlier period comes the Tomb of the Two Brothers at Thebes, which the excavators have explained as the joint sepulcher of two men, Niankhnum and Khnumhotep, who were lovers. Bas reliefs on the tomb walls show the owners embracing affectionately.”
“Queen Hatshepsut (reigned 1503-1482 BC) adopted male dress and even wore a false beard; these male attributes probably stem from her decision to reign alone, rather than from lesbianism.
A figure of particular interest is the pharaoh Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV; reigned ca. 1372-1354 BC), who was a religious and artistic reformer. Although this king begat several daughters with his wife, the famous Nefertiti, in art he is often shown as eunuch-like, with swollen hips and feminine breasts. According to some interpreters these somatic features reflect a glandular disorder. Other scholars believe that they are a deliberate artistic stylization, so that the appearance of androgyny may convey a universal concept of the office of kingship, uniting the male and the female so as to constitute an appropriate counterpart of the universal god Aten he introduced. Scenes of Akhenaten caressing his son-in-law Smenkhkare have been interpreted, doubtfully, as indicating a homosexual relation between the two.”
“Pioneering British writer on sexual psychology. Descended from a family with many generations of seafarers, Henry Havelock Ellis was named after a distinguished soldier who was the hero of the Indian Mutiny. Early in life he sailed twice around the world and spent some years in Australia. In boarding school he had some unpleasant experiences suggesting a passive element in his character, and his attachments to women were often more friendships than erotic liaisons. At the age of 32 he married Edith Lees, a lesbian; after the first year of their marriage all sexual relations ceased, and both went on to a series of affairs with women. By nature an autodidact, Ellis obtained in 1889 only a licentiate in Medicine, Surgery, and Midwifery from the Society of Apothecaries – a somewhat inferior degree that always embarrassed him. More interested in his literary studies than in the practice of medicine, he nevertheless collected case histories mainly by correspondence, as his autobiography makes no mention of clinical practice.”
ERA DE AQUARIUS: “In the atmosphere that prevailed after the disgrace of Oscar Wilde (May 1895), publication in England was problematic, but under doubtful auspices the English edition was released in November 1897.”
“Sexual Inversion was the first book in English to treat homosexuality as neither disease nor crime, and if he dismissed the current notion that it was a species of <degeneracy> (in the biological sense), he also maintained that it was inborn and unmodifiable – a view that he never renounced. His book, couched in simple language, urged public toleration for what was then regarded as unnatural and criminal to the highest degree. To a readership conditioned from childhood to regard homosexual behavior with disgust and abhorrence, the book was beyond the limits of comprehension, and a radical publisher and bookseller named George Bedborough was duly prosecuted for issuing <a certain lewd wicked bawdy scandalous and obscene libel>” “The book was to appear in two later editions as the second volume of Ellis’ Studies in the Psychology of Sex, which in its final format extended to 7 volumes covering the whole of sexual science as it existed in the first three decades of the 20th century.” “Ellis never endorsed the explanations offered by Freud and the psychoanalytic school, so that the third edition of Sexual Inversion (1915), which was supplemented by material drawn from Magnus Hirschfeld’s Die Homosexualität des Mannes und des Weibes, published a year earlier, presented essentially the standpoint of 1904. The next in radical character was the measured discussion of masturbation, which Victorian society had been taught to regard with virtual paranoia as the cause of numberless ills.”
“The term ephebophilia seems to have been coined by Magnus Hirschfeld in his Wesen der Liebe (1906)”
ANTI-AQUILINO (BANQUETE): “those with bearded faces who had outgrown the stage at which they were appropriate as the younger partners in pederasty, but not yet old enough to marry: the prime age for military service. The ancient Greek age of puberty was likely in the mid-teens rather than the younger ages typical of contemporary Western society.”
“In other societies, ephebes are legally on a par with younger children, but in practice sexual activities with them are not as harshly repressed as with the younger group.”
“The combination of heightened sexual energy with a lack of heterosexual outlets (owing to marriage ages in the twenties and restrictions on pre-marital opportunities) and low incomes (characteristic of males still in school, military service, or just beginning to acquire work experience) has in many societies made heterosexual ephebes more available for trade (one-sided) relationships with homosexuals than any other group of heterosexual males.
For many ephebophiles, the naïveté of ephebes is a source of attraction, their enthusiasm for new experiences (including sexual and romantic involvements) contrasted with what is perceived to be the more jaded and skeptical attitudes of other adults.”
“The ancient Greeks acknowledged this trait with the term philephebos (fond of young men) and philoboupais (one who is fond of over-matured boys, <bull-boys> or <husky young men>), but generally slighted it in favor of the pederastic preference. Nevertheless, the athletic games of which the Greeks were so fond featured nude ephebes, the size of whose members received public acclaim, and the victors basked in adulation; Pindar wrote odes to them.”
“In the 20th century, the dominance of the androphile model of male homosexuality has tended to subsume, appropriate, and obscure the ephebophile current, and to consider it as a mode of adult-adult relationships rather than as a distinctive type of preference.”
“Knowledge of Epicureanism, the classical rival of Stoicism, is fragmentary because Christians, disliking its atheistic materialism, belief in the accidental existence of the cosmos, and ethical libertarianism, either failed to copy or actually destroyed the detested works. Of all the numerous works composed in antiquity, only Lucretius’ philosophical poem De rerum natura survives intact. Diogenes Laertius reported that Epicurus wrote more than anyone else, including 37 books On Nature. A typical maxim: <We see that pleasure is the beginning and end of living happily>.
Epicurus (341-270 BC), the founder of the school, served as an ephebe in Athens at 18 and then studied at the Academy, a fellow classmate of Menander, when Aristotle was absent in Chalcis. Having taught abroad, where he combatted the atomist philosophy of Democritus, he returned to Athens and bought his house with a garden in 307-6. There he taught until his death, allowing women and slaves to participate in his lessons – to the shock of traditionalists. Only a few lines of his works survive. Apparently he likened sexual object choice, whether of women or boys, to food preferences – a parallel that often recurred in later times. His beloved Metrodorus predeceased him.
[O LEITMOTIF INCONSCIENTE DO BLOG] The Epicurean school, consisting of scholars who secluded themselves from society in Epicurus’ garden, lived modestly or even austerely. Stoics, however, libeled the secretive Epicureans because of their professed hedonism, accusing them of profligacy of every kind despite the fact that Epicurus felt that pleasure could be attained only in restraint of some pursuits that in the long run bring more pain than the temporary pleasure they seem to offer. Natural pleasures are easily satisfied, others being unnecessary. The ideal was freedom from destiny by satisfying desire and avoiding the pain of desires too difficult or impossible to satisfy. By freeing man from fear of gods and an afterlife and by teaching him to avoid competition in politics and business it liberates him from emotional turmoil. Friendship was extremely important to Epicureans.”
“Lucretius (ca. 94-55 BC) seems not to have added any ideas to those taught by Epicurus himself. But others, like the fabulously rich general Lucullus, whose banquets became proverbial, excused their gross sensuality by references to Epicurus’ maxims. Julius Caesar proclaimed himself an Epicurean. Under the Empire Stoicism vanquished its rival and vied with Christianity, which when triumphant anathematized Epicureanism.”
“the Soviet Communists, who naturally ranked Epicurus above Plato as the greatest philosopher of antiquity.” ???
“Gassendi (1592-1655) [neo-epicurean] exerted enormous influence on both Newton and Leibniz.”
“One of the most persistent myths that have gained a foot-hold in the gay movement is the belief that faggot derives from the basic meaning of <bundle of sticks used to light a fire>, with the historical commentary that when witches were burned at the stake, <only presumed male homosexuals were considered low enough to help kindle the fires>.
The English word has in fact three forms: faggot, attested by the Oxford English Dictionary from circa 1300; fadge, attested from 1588; and faggald, which the Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue first records from 1375. The first and second forms have the additional meaning <fat, slovenly woman> which according to the English Dialect Dictionary survived into the 19th century in the folk speech of England.
The homosexual sense of the term, unknown in England itself, appears for the first time in America in a vocabulary of criminal slang printed in Portland, Oregon in 1914, with the example <All the fagots (sissies) will be dressed in drag at the ball tonight>. The apocopated (clipped) form fag then arose by virtue of the tendency of American colloquial speech to create words of one syllable; the first quotation is from the book by Neis Anderson, The Hobo (1923): <Fairies or Fags are men or boys who exploit sex for profit.> The short form thus also has no connection with British fag as attested from the 19th century (for example, in the novel Tom Brown’s Schooldays) in the sense of <public school boy who performs menial tasks for an upper-classman>.
In American slang faggot/fag usurped the semantic role of bugger in British usage, with its connotations of extreme hostility and contempt bordering on death wishes. In more recent decades it has become the term of abuse par excellence in the mouths of heterosexuals, often just as an insult aimed at another male’s alleged want of masculinity or courage, rather than implying a sexual role or orientation.
The ultimate origin of the word is a Germanic term represented by the Norwegian dialect words fagg, <bundle, heap>, alongside bagge, <obese, clumsy creature> (chiefly of animals). From the latter are derived such Romance words as French bagasse and ltalian bagascia, <prostitute>, whence the parallel derivative bagascione whose meaning matches that of American English faggot/fag, while Catalan bagassejar signifies to faggot, <to frequent the company of loose women>.
The final proof that faggot cannot have originated in the burning of witches at the stake is that in English law both witchcraft and buggery were punishable by hanging, and that in the reign of the homosexual monarch James I the execution of heretics came to an end, so that by the time American English gave the word its new meaning there cannot have been in the popular mind even the faintest remnant of the complex of ideas credited to the term in the contemporary myth. It is purely and simply an Americanism of the 20th century.
Given the fact that the term faggot cannot refer to burning at the stake, why does the myth continue to enjoy popularity in the gay movement? On the conscious level it serves as a device with which to attack the medieval church, by extension Christianity in toto, and finally all authority. On another level, it may linger as a <myth of origins>, a kind of collective masochistic ritual that willingly identifies the homosexual as victim.”
“The term fascism derives from fasces, the bundles of rods carried by the lictors of ancient Rome to symbolize the unity of classes in the Republic. Fascism is the authoritarian movement that arose in Italy in the wake of World War I. Although Hitler admired its founder Mussolini and imitated him at first – the term Führer is modeled on Duce – one cannot simply equate his more radical National Socialist movement with the Italian phenomenon, as writers of the left are prone to do.”
“Not essentially racist like Nazism or anti-bourgeois like Marxism, Italian fascism, with its corporative binding of workers and employers, has been less consistently hostile to homosexuals.”
“Mussolini also argued in a discussion of a draft penal code in 1930 that because Italians, being virile, were not homosexuals, Italy needed no law banning homosexual acts, which he believed only degenerate foreigners to practice. A ban would only frighten such tourists away, and Italy needed the money they spent to improve its balance of payments and shore up its sagging economy. Napoléon had promulgated his code, which did not penalize homosexual acts between consenting adults, in northern Italy in 1810, and thus decriminalized sodomy. It had already been decriminalized in Tuscany by Grand Duke Leopold, the enlightened brother of Joseph II. The Albertine Code of 1837 for Piedmont-Sardinia was extended to all its dominions after the House of Savoy created a united Kingdom of Italy, a task completed in 1870. Pervasive was the influence of the jurist MarquisCesare Beccaria, who argued against cruel and unusual punishments and against all offenses motivated by religious superstition and fanaticism.
Thus Italy with its age-old <Mediterranean homosexuality> in which women were protected, almost secluded – upper-class girls at least in the South being accompanied in public by dueñas –, had like other Latin countries allowed female prostitution and closed its eyes to homosexuality. As such it had became the playground par excellence during the grand tour of the English milords, and also the refuge of exiles and émigrés from the criminal sanctions of the Anglo-American common law and the Prussian code. The Prussian Code was extended in 1871-72 to the North and then South German territories incorporated in the Reich, including ones where the Code Napoleon had prevailed in the early part of the century. Byron and John Addington Symonds took refuge in Italy, as William Beckford did in Portugal and Oscar Wilde in Paris. Friedrich Alfred Krupp’s playground was in Capri, Thomas Mann’s in Venice, and Count Adelswárd Fersen’s also in Capri.”
“Personally, Mussolini was somewhat of a sexual acrobat, in that he had a succession of mistresses and often took time out in the office to have sex with one or another of his secretaries.”
“Believing in military strength through numbers, Mussolini did more than Hitler to subsidize parents of numerous progeny, thus hoping to increase Italy’s population from 40 to 60 million.”
“However, after he formed the Rome-Berlin Axis with Hitler in 1936, Mussolini began, under Nazi influence, to persecute homosexuals and to promulgate anti-Semitic decrees in 1938 and 1939, though these were laxly enforced, and permitted exceptions, such as veterans of World War I.”
“Oppressing homosexuals more than Jews, Mussolini’s regime rounded up and imprisoned a substantial number, a procedure poignantly depicted in Ettore Scola’s excellent film A Special Day (1977).” “Even exclusive homosexuals, if they were not unlucky, survived fascism unscathed.”
“Admiral Horthy seized control of Hungary from the communist Bela Kun in 1920 and as Regent unleashed a <White Terror> largely directed against Jews, two years before Mussolini marched on Rome with his black-shirts.”
“Fascists were less consistent and more divided among themselves than even communists or Nazis. After all, they had no sacred text like Das Kapital or Mein Kampf, and further were not ruling only a single powerful country.” “Czechoslovakia, the only democracy in Central Europe to survive this period, simply continued the Austrian penal code of 1852 that penalized both male and female homosexuality.”
“The great homosexual poet Federico García Lorca was shot by a death squad near Granada in 1936; it is said that they fired the bullets through his backside to <make the punishment fit the crime>.” “More than Mussolini, Franco resisted the theories and pressures of Hitler, whom he regarded as a despicable (and perhaps deranged) upstart. It has been argued that Franco was not a fascist at all and that he actually maintained a pro-Jewish policy, granting asylum to refugees from Nazi-occupied Europe and attempting to protect Sephardic Jews in the Balkan countries. In his last years he in fact liberalized Spain to a certain extent, allowing among other things a resurgence of gay bars, baths, and culture even before the accession of King Juan Carlos upon his death in 1975. Today Spain is one of the freest countries in Europe.”
“Naturally Latins, like Slavs, being considered inferior peoples by Hitler, did not in general espouse racism (Hitler had to make the Japanese honorary Aryans to ally with them in the Tripartite Pact of 1937), so they had no reason to think of homosexuals in his terms.”
FASCIST PERVERSION, BELIEF IN
“Fascism and National Socialism (Nazism) were originally distinct political systems, but their eventual international ties (the <Rome-Berlin axis>) led to the use of <fascist> as an umbrella term¹ by Communist writers anxious to avoid the implication that <National Socialism> was a type of socialism. Neither in Italy nor in Spain did the right-authoritarian political movements have a homosexual component. Rather it was in Weimar Germany that the right-wing paramilitary groups which constituted the nucleus of the later National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) attracted a considerable number of homosexuals whose erotic leanings overlapped with the male bonding of the party. This strong male bonding, in the later judgment of their own leaders, gave the Nazis a crucial advantage in their victory over the rival Social Democratic and communist formations in the early 1930s.
The most celebrated of the homosexuals in the Nazi Party of the 1920s was Ernst Rohm, whose sexual proclivities were openly denounced by left-wing propagandists, but this did not deprive him of Hitler’s confidence until the putsch of June 30, 1934, in which he and many of his homosexual comrades in arms were massacred.”
¹ Discordo, mas segue o jogo.
“theorists such as Wilhelm Reich who were opposed to homosexuality [?] could claim that the right-wing youth were <becoming more homosexual>. The victory of National Socialism at the beginning of 1933 then reinforced Communist and émigré propagandists in their resort to <fascist perversion> as a rhetorical device with which they could abuse and vilify the regime that had defeated and exiled them – and which they hoped would be transient and unstable.
In particular, the statute by which Stalin restored the criminal sanctions against homosexuality that had been omitted from the penal codes of 1922 and 1926 was officially titled the <Law of March 7, 1934> – a pointed allusion to the anniversary of the National Socialist consolidation of power one year earlier.”
“In the United States Maoists charged that the gay liberation movement of 1969 and the years following was an example of <bourgeois décadance> that would vanish once the triumph of socialism was achieved. “
Samuel Igra, Germany’s National Vice, London: Quality Press, 1945.
“Adolescent alienation was the theme of Rebel without a Cause (1955), in which, however, the delicate Sal Mineo character dies so that James Dean can be united with Natalie Wood.”
“In the book Midnight Express the hero admitted to a gay love affair in prison, but in the movie version (1978) he rejects a handsome fellow inmate’s advances.”
“Screen biographies of gay people have had similar fates. Michelangelo and Cole Porter appear as joyful heterosexuals; Oscar Wilde could not be sanitized, to be sure, but he was presented in a <tasteful> manner (3 British versions, 2 in 1960, one in 1984). Recent screen biographies have been better; the documentary on the painter Paul Cadmus (1980) is open without being sensational; Prick Up Your Ears, on the life of Joe Orton, is as frank as one can wish, though it somehow misses the core of his personality.”
“In The Third Sex (West Germany, 1959) a sophisticated older man has an entourage of teenage boys. Although this film purveys dated ideas of homosexuality, it went farther in explicitness than anything that Hollywood was able to do for over a decade. Federico Fellini’s celebrated La Dolce Vita (1960) is a multifaceted portrait of eternal decadence in chic circles in Rome.”
“One breakthrough came in 1967 when the legendary Marlon Brando portrayed a closeted homosexual army officer in John Huston’sReflections in a Golden Eye, a film which drew a <Condemned> rating from the Catholic Church.” Who gives a fuck (literally)!
“Sunday Bloody Sunday: this film was notable for the shock experienced by straight audiences at a kissing scene between Peter Finch and Murray Head. Perhaps the most notorious of the gay directors was Rainer Werner Fassbinder, whose Fox and His Friends (1975) deals with homosexuality and class struggle. Fassbinder’s last film was his controversial version of a Genet novel, Querelle (1982). The death of Franco created the possibility of a new openness in Spanish culture, including a number of gay films. Influenced by Luis Buñuel, Law of Desire (1986) by Pedro Almodóvar is surely a masterpiece of comic surrealism.”
“Already in the 1920s some major directors were known to be gay, including the German Friedrich W. Murnau and the Russian Sergei Eisenstein.”
“During their lifetimes Charles Laughton and Montgomery Clift had to suffer fag-baiting taunts from colleagues, while Rock Hudson remained largely untouched by public scandal until his death from AIDS in 1985. Tyrone Power and Cary Grant were decloseted after their deaths. The sexuality of others, such as Errol Flynn and James Dean, remains the subject of argument. In Germany the stage actor and film director Gustav Grundgens managed to work through the Nazi period, even though his homosexuality was known to the regime.”
“In 1969, however, hardcore porno arrived, apparently to stay. Some 50 theatres across the United States specialized in the genre, and where the authorities were willing to turn a blind eye, sexual acts took place there, stimulated by the films.”
“Much of the early production was forgettable, but in 1971, in Boys in the Sand starring Casey Donovan (Cal Culver), the director-producer Wakefield Poole achieved a rare blend of sexual explicitness and cinematographic values.”
“In the later 80s AIDS began to devastate porno-industry workers, gay and straight, and safe sex procedures became more rigorous on the set (it should be noted, however, that long before AIDS, by strict convention, pornographic film ejaculations were always conducted outside the body, so as to be graphically visible; hence film sex was always basically <safe sex>).”
PROVAVELMENTE ULTRAPASSADO: “Lesbian porno exists only as scenes within films addressed to heterosexual males, their being, thus far, no market for full-length lesbian films of this nature. A number of independent lesbian film-makers have made candid motion pictures about lesbian life, but they are not pornographic.”
Carel Rowe, The Baudelairean Cinema: A Trend Within the American Avant-Garde, Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Research Press, 1982.
“From his early years at the lycée onward, he preferred the pen to his father’s scalpel, and single-handedly edited a minor journal, the Colibri, that clumsily but clearly foretold his future talent. In Paris he read Law but never took the degree for reasons of health, and there met Maxime Du Camp, with whom he formed a close friendship. Together they traveled through Brittany and Normandy in 1847, bringing back a volume of reminiscences that was to be published only after Flaubert’s death (Par les champs et par les grèves, 1885). Between October of 1849 and May of 1851 the two traveled in Egypt and Turkey, and there Flaubert had a number of pédérastie experiences which he related in his letters to Louis Bouilhet.”
BORING FASHION: “On his return to France Flaubert shut himself up in his country house at Croisset, near Rouen. Instead of aspiring to self-discovery in the manner of the Romanticists, Flaubert sought to bury his own personality by striving for the goal of art in itself, and he devoted his entire life to the quest for its secrets. His ferocious will to be in his works <like God>, everywhere and nowhere, explains the nerve-wracking effort that went into each of his novels, in which nothing is left to the free flow of inspiration, nothing is asserted without being verified, nothing is described that has not been seen.” “This explains the multiple versions that are periodically uncovered of almost every one of his works, with the sole exception of Madame Bovary (1857), which led to his being tried for offending public decency.”
“In 1857 he traveled to Tunisia to collect material for a historical novel set in Carthage after the First Punic War. Salammbô (1862), abundantly documented, is so rich in sadistic scenes, including one of a mass child-sacrifice, that it horrified some contemporary readers.”
“In 1874 he published La tentation de saint Antoine, a prose poem of great power and imagination. His last work, Bouvard et Pécuchet (issued posthumously in 1881), is an unfinished study in male bonding.”
“Sodomy is a subject of conversation at table. You can deny it at times, but everyone starts ribbing you and you end up spilling the beans. Traveling for our own information and entrusted with a mission by the government, we regarded it as our duty to abandon ourselves to this manner of ejaculation. The occasion has not yet presented itself, but we are looking for one. The Turkish baths are where it is practiced. One rents the bath for 5 fr., including the masseurs, pipe, coffee, and linen, and takes one’s urchin into one of the rooms. – You should know that all the bath attendants are bardaches [homossexuais passivos].”
“at the end of his life he surprised the world with 2 successor volumes with a different subject matter: the management of sexuality in ancient Greece and Rome. While completing these books he was already gravely ill, a fact that may account for their turgid, sometimes repetitive presentation. In June 1984 Michel Foucault died in Paris of complications resulting from AIDS.”
O CONTINENTE SE ESMIGALHA: “Discontent with the systems of Marx and Freud and their contentious followers had nonetheless left an appetite for new <mega-theories>, which the Anglo-Saxon pragmatic tradition was unable to satisfy.”
“This concept of discontinuity was all the more welcome as the ground had been prepared by an influential American philosopher of science, Thomas Kuhn, whose concept of radical shifts in paradigm had been widely adopted. In vain did Foucault protest toward the end of his life that he was not the philosopher of discontinuity; he is now generally taken to be such.”
“Not since Jean-Paul Sartre had France given the world a thinker of such resonance. Yet Foucault’s work shows a number of key weaknesses. Not gifted with the patience for accumulating detail that since Aristotle has been taken to be a hallmark of the historian’s craft, he often spun elaborate theories from scanty empirical evidence. He also showed a predilection for scatter-gun concepts such as episteme, discourse, difference, and power; in seeking to explain much, these talismans make for fuzziness. Foucauldian language has had a seductive appeal for his followers, but repetition dulls the magic and banalization looms.”
“French Utopian philosopher and sexual radical. Fourier spent much of his life in Lyon, trapped in a business world which he hated with a passion. Disillusioned in childhood by the dishonesty and hypocrisy of the people around him, he gradually formulated an elaborate theory of how totally to transform society in a Utopian world of the future known as Harmony, in which mankind would live in large communes called Phalansteries.
Fourier hid his sexual beliefs from his contemporaries, and it was more than a century after his death before his main erotic work, Le nouveau monde amoureux, was first published. (…) Fourier did not believe that anyone under 16 had any sexual feelings, nor did he understand the psychology of sadism, pedophilia, or rape, so that his sexual theories are not entirely suitable for modem experimentation. (…) He recognized male homosexuals and lesbians as biological categories long before Krafft-Ebing created the modern concept of immutable sexual <perversions>.” “He wrote some fictional episodes in the vein of William Beckford, one of which describes the seduction of a beautiful youth by an older man.”
“French politics and literature have exercised an incalculable influence on other countries, from England to Quebec, from Senegal to Vietnam. Whether justified or not, a reputation for libertine hedonism clings to the country, and especially to its capital, Paris – by far the largest city of northern Europe from the 12th to the 18th centuries (when London surpassed it), making France a barometer of changing sexual mores.”
“The heavy-drinking later Merovingians, descendants of the Frankish king Merovech and his grandson Clovis, who conquered all Gaul, were barbarians who indulged their sensual appetites freely. Lack of control allowed considerable sexual license to continue into the more Christianized Carolingian period (late 8th-9th centuries), and probably to increase during the feudal anarchy that followed the Viking invasions of the 9th and 10th, but in the 11th century the church moved to regulate private conduct according to its own strict canons.”
“The term sodomia, which appears in the last decades of the 12th century [?], covered bestiality, homosexual practices, and <unnatural> heterosexual relations of all kinds.” “Popes organized the Inquisition against them and invoked the bloody Albigensian Crusade which devastated much of Languedoc, homeland of a sensual culture tinged by Moslem influences from the south. The word bougre itself survives to this day as English bugger, which in Great Britain, apart from legal usage, remains a coarse and virtually obscene expression.”
“The guilt of the Templars remains moot to this day; while some may have been involved in homosexual liaisons, the political atmosphere surrounding the investigation and the later controversy made impartial judgment impossible. A persistent fear of sexuality and a pathetic inability to stamp out its proscribed manifestations, even with periodic burning of offenders at the stake and strict regulations within the cloister, plagued medieval society to the end.”
“Henri III was celebrated for his mignons, the favorites drawn from the ranks of the petty nobility – handsome, gorgeously attired and adorned adolescents and magnificent swordsmen ready to sacrifice their lives for their sovereign. Although the king had exhibited homosexual tendencies earlier in life, these became more marked after a stay in Venice in 1574. Yet neither he nor the mignons scorned the opposite sex in their pursuit of pleasure, and there is no absolute proof that any of this circle expressed their desires genitally. Yet a whole literature of pamphlets and lampoons by Protestants and by Catholic extremists, both of whom disapproved of the king’s moderate policy, was inspired by the life of the court of Henri III until his assassination in 1589.”
“Even the entourage of Cardinal Richelieu included the Abbé Boisrobert, patron of the theatre and the arts, and founder of the French Academy, the summit of French intellectual life. His proclivities were so well known that he was nicknamed <the mayor of Sodom>, while the king who occupied the throne, Louis XIII, was surnamed <the chaste> because of his absolute indifference to the fair sex and to his wife Marie de Medici.”
“In his posthumously published novel La religieuse, Denis Diderot indicted convents as hot-houses of lesbianism.”
“The Revolution secured the release (though only for a time) of the imprisoned pansexual writer and thinker, the Marquis D.A.F. de Sade, who carried the transgressive strain in the Enlightenment to the ultimate limits of the imagination.”
“The novels of Jean Genet, a former professional thief, treated male homosexuality with a pornographic frankness and style rich in imagery unparalleled in world literature. Genet enjoyed the patronage of the dominant intellectual of the time, the heterosexual Jean-Paul Sartre, who also wrote about homosexuality in other contexts.”
“Innovations such as a computerized gay bulletin board – the Minitel – reached France, but also the tragic incursion of AIDS (in French, SIDA), spread in no small part from Haiti and the United States.”
“The fraternal order of Free and Accepted Masons is a male secret society having adherents throughout the world. The order is claimed to have arisen from the English and Scottish fraternities of stone-masons and cathedral builders in the late Middle Ages. The formation of a grand lodge in London in 1717 marked the beginning of the spread of free-masonry on the continent as far east as Poland and Russia. From its obscure origins free-masonry gradually evolved into a political and benevolent society that vigorously promoted the ideology of the Enlightenment, and thus came into sharp and lasting antagonism with the defenders of the Old Régime.”
“The slogan Liberty, Equality, Fraternity immortalized by the French Revolution is said to have begun in the lodges of the Martinist affiliate.”
“Five aspects of Freud’s psychoanalytic work are relevant to homosexuality, though by no means have all of them been fully appreciated in the discussion of the legal and social aspects of the subject. These include: (1) the psychology of sex; (2) the etiology of paranoia; (3) psychoanalytic anthropology; (4) the psychology of religion; and (5) the origins of Judaism and Christianity. In regard to the last two the psychoanalytic profession in the United States has notably shied away from the implications of the founder’s ideas, in no small part because of its accommodation to the norms of American culture, including popular Protestant religiosity.”
“Freud pointed out that the pederast is attracted only to the male youth who has not yet lost his androgynous quality, so that it is the blend of masculine and feminine traits in the boy that arouses and attracts the adult male” “with a narcissistic starting point they seek youthful sexual partners resembling themselves, whom they then love as the mother loved them. He also determined that alleged inverts were not indifferent to female stimuli, but transferred their arousal to male objects.”
“Recent investigations have sought to confirm this insight for paranoia in male subjects only, and in all likelihood it is related not just to the phenomenon of homosexual panic but to the generally higher level of societal anxiety and legal intolerance in regard to male as opposed to female homosexuality. This would also explain why lesbianism is invisible to the unconscious: the collective male psyche experiences no threat from female homosexuality.”
“The outcome of Freud’s explorations in this direction [anthropology] was Totem and Taboo (1913), which despite the break with his Swiss colleague in that year is the most Jungian of all his works.” “While Hellenic civilization could distinguish between father-son and erastes-eromenos relationships, Biblical Judaism could not, and expanded its earlier prohibition of homosexual acts with a father or uncle to a generalized taboo. It is perhaps pertinent that pedophilia (sex with pre-pubertal children), as distinct from pederasty, usually involves members of the same family, not total strangers. Also, extending this mode of thinking, the fascination which some homosexual men have for partners of other races may be owing to the unconscious guilt that still adheres to a sexual relationship with anyone who could be even remotely related to them, which is to say a member of the same ethnic or racial group.” “Totemism and exogamy are the two halves of the familiar Oedipus complex, the attraction to the mother and the death wishes against the rival father.” “Freud then appealed to Robertson Smith’s writings on sacrifice and sacrificial feasts in which the totem is ceremonially slain and eaten, thus reenacting the original deed. The rite is followed by mourning and then by triumphant rejoicing and wild excesses –, the events serve to perpetuate the community and its identity with the ancestor. After thousands of years of religious evolution the totem became a god, and the complicated story of the various religions begins. This work of Freud’s has been condemned by anthropologists and other specialists, yet it may throw considerable light on aspects of Judeo-Christian myth and legend that cluster around the rivalry of the father and his adolescent son – in which the homosexual aggressor is, ostensibly, seeking to destroy the masculinity of his rival by <using him as a woman>.”
“Obsessional neurosis is a pathological counterpart of religion, while religion may be styled a collective obsessional neurosis.”
“From the secondary sources that he had read, Freud surmised that the lawgiver Moses was an Egyptian who had opted for exile after religious counter-revolution had undone the reforms of the first monotheist, Akhenaten. His Egyptian retinue became the Levites, the elite of the new religious community which received its law code, not from him, but from the Midianite priest of a volcanic deity, Jahweh, at the shrine of Kadesh Barnea. This last site, amusingly enough, presumably took its name from the bevy of male and female cult prostitutes who ministered at its shrine. The Biblical Moses is a fusion of the two historic figures.
Freud also, on the basis of a book published by the German Semiticist Ernst Sellin, posited the death of Moses in an uprising caused by his autocratic rule and apodictic pronouncements. The whole notion was based upon a reinterpretation of some passages in the book of Hosea, which because of its early and poetic character, not to speak of the problems of textual transmission, poses enormous difficulties even for the expert.” “Judaism is a religion of the father, Christianity a religion of the son, whose death on the cross and the institution of the eucharist are the last stage in the evolution that began with the slaying and eating of the totem animal by the primal horde.”
“The particular emphasis with which Freud contradicted Magnus Hirschfeld’s notion that homosexuals were a biological third sex led – together with a tendency (not confined to psychoanalysis) to deny the constitutional bases of behavior – to the assertion that homosexuality was purely the result of <fixation> in an infantile stage of sexual development provoked by the action or inaction of the parents. (…) Thus in the popular mind the belief that homosexuality is somehow a failure of psychological development has its underpinning in the Freudian concepts.”
“his legacy has quietly worked in favor of toleration”
FRIENDSHIP, FEMALE ROMANTIC
“When Sarah’s family discovered that she had run off with a woman instead of a man, they were relieved – her reputation would not suffer any irreparable harm (as it would have had her accomplice been male). Her relative Mrs. Tighe observed, <Sarah’s conduct, though it has an appearance of imprudence, is I am sure void of serious impropriety. There were no gentlemen concerned, nor does it appear to be anything more than a scheme of Romantic Friendship.> The English, during the second half of the 18th century, prized sensibility, faithfulness, and devotion in a woman, but forbade her significant contact with the opposite sex before she was betrothed. It was reasoned, apparently, that young women could practice these sentiments on each other so that when they were ready for marriage they would have perfected themselves in those areas. It is doubtful that women viewed their own romantic friendships in such a way, but – if we can place any credence in 18th century English fiction as a true reflection of that society – men did. Because romantic friendship between women served men’s self-interest in their view, it was permitted and even socially encouraged. The attitude of Charlotte Lennox’s hero in Euphemia (1790) is typical. Maria Harley’s uncle chides her for her great love for Euphemia and her obstinate grief when Euphemia leaves for America, and he points out that her fiancé <has reason to be jealous of a friendship that leaves him but second place in Maria’s affection>; but the fiancé responds, <Miss Harley’s sensibility on this occasion is the foundation of all my hopes. From a heart so capable of a sincere attachment, the man who is so happy as to be her choice may expect all the refinements of a delicate passion, with all the permanence of a generous friendship.>”
“The most complete fictional blueprint for conducting a romantic friendship is Sarah Scott’s A Description of Millennium Hall (1762), a novel which went through four editions by 1778.”
“Mrs. Delany’s description of her own first love (in The Autobiography and Correspondence of Mrs. Delany, ed. Sara L. Woolsey) is typical of what numerous autobiographies, diaries, letters, and novels of the period contained. As a young woman, she formed a passionate attachment to a clergyman’s daughter, whom she admired for her <uncommon genius … intrepid spirit … extraordinary understanding, lively imagination, and humane disposition.> They shared <secret talk> and <whispers> together –, they wrote to one another every day, and met in the fields between their fathers’ houses at every opportunity. <We thought that day tedious,> Mrs. Delany wrote years later, <that we did not meet, and had many stolen interviews>. Typical of many youthful romantic friendships, it did not last long (at the age of 17, Mrs. Delany was given in marriage to an old man), but it provided fuel for the imagination which idealized the possibilities of what such a relationship might be like without the impingement of cold marital reality. Because of such girlhood intimacies (which were often cut off in an untimely manner), most women would have understood when those attachments were compared with heterosexual love by the female characters in 18th century novels, and were considered, as Lucy says in William Hayley’s The Young Widow, <infinitely more valuable>. They would have had their own frame of reference when in those novels, women adopted the David and Jonathan story for themselves and swore that they felt for each other (again as Lucy says) <a love passing the Love of Men>, or proclaimed as does Anne Hughes, the author of Henry and Isabella (1788), that such friendships are <more sweet, interesting, and to complete all, lasting, than any other which we can ever hope to possess; and were a just account of anxiety and satisfaction to be made out, would, it is possible, in the eye of rational estimation, far exceed the so-much boasted pleasure of love.>”
“Saint Mery, who recorded his observations of his 1793-1798 journey, was shocked by the <unlimited liberty> which American young ladies seemed to enjoy, and by their ostensible lack of passion toward men. The combination of their independence, heterosexual passionlessness, and intimacy with each other could have meant only one thing to a Frenchman
in the 1790s: that <they are not at all strangers to being willing to seek unnatural pleasures with persons of their own sex>. It is as doubtful that great masses of middle and upper-class young ladies gave themselves up to homosexuality as it is that they gave themselves up to heterosexual intercourse before marriage. But the fiction of the period corroborates that St. Mery saw American women behaving openly as though they were in love with each other. Charles Brockden Brown’s Ormand, for example, suggests that American romantic friends were very much like their English counterparts.”
“But love between women, at least as it was lived in women’s fantasies, was far more consuming than the likes of Casanova could believe. Women dreamed not of erotic escapades but of a blissful life together. In such a life a woman would have choices; she would be in command of her own destiny; she would be an adult relating to another adult in a way that a heterosexual relationship with a virtual stranger (often an old or at least a much older man), arranged by a parent for consideration totally divorced from affection, would not allow her to be. Samuel Richardson permitted Miss Howe to express the yearnings of many a frustrated romantic friend when she remarked to Clarissa, <How charmingly might you and I live together and despise them all>.”
“For Plato, friendship is rather part of the philosopher’s quest: a link between the world of the senses in which we live and the eternal world.”
“How could the masculinity of a youth be preserved in a homosexual relationship with an older man? That was the kernel of the problem for the Greeks. For the Romans it was the perennial anxiety that a free citizen might take a passive role in a sexual relationship with a slave. Homosexuality in itself was not the problem for either: it was in the forms that homosexuality might take that the difficulty lay.”
“Homosexuality and friendship: they may well appear at first as two discrete histories, one of society and the other of sexuality. But if one tries to follow their subterranean currents in the Europe of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, one will end by finding oneself drawn into writing about something larger. One will find oneself writing about power and the power not only of judges but of words.”
“Marriage itself was redefined, with implicit consequences for friendship. A society that had observed the tradition of arranged marriages between unequal partners was confronted with a need for change. Under the influence of the middle-class ideology of the 18th century, society now accepted the principle of a marriage founded upon the affinity of equals, upon love rather than family interest. In this sense husband and wife could now be friends, and friendship was no longer invested with an exclusively homo-social character. The decisive shift in this direction occurred in England, where the Industrial Revolution and the ideology of classical liberalism went hand in hand.”
“So Romanticism revived the classical model of friendship for which Hellenic antecedents could always be held up as an ideal by such homosexual admirers of antiquity as Johann Joachim Winckelmann, a thinker who in Goethe’s words <felt himself born for a friendship of this kind> and <became conscious of his true self only under this form of friendship>.”
“While Ernst Röhm could boast, late in 1933, that the homoerotic component in the SA and SS had given the Nazis the crucial edge in their struggle against the Weimar system, homophobic writers could call for the suppression of all forms of overt male homosexuality and the enactment of even more punitive laws – which were in fact adopted in 1935.”
“Certain women feel more comfortable in their dealings with gay men, just because they know that they do not have to be constantly on guard against sexual aggression, but can have close relationships, both social and professional, that attain high levels of creativity and imagination.”
“The use of friend or friendship as an euphemism for the homosexual partner (lover) and the liaison itself persists. Recently the compilers of newspaper obituary columns have taken to describing the lifelong companion of a deceased homosexual as <his friend>, in contexts where a heterosexual would be survived by the spouse and children.” Haha
Edward Carpenter, Ioläus: An Anthology of Friendship (1902)
“Anyone was allowed to compete regardless of race, sex, age, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, or athletic ability. In keeping with the Masters Movement in sports, athletes competed with others in their own age group. The track and field and swimming events were officially sanctioned by their respective national masters programs. Athletes participated, not as representatives of their respective countries, but as individuals on behalf of cities and towns. There were no minimum qualifying standards in any events.”
“The organizers of the Gay Games have experienced considerable legal difficulties. Before the 1982 Gay Games, the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) filed a court action against the organizers of the Gay Games, which were going to be called the Gay Olympic Games. In 1978, the United States Congress passed the Amateur Sports Act which, among other things, granted the USOC exclusive use of the word Olympic. Although the USOC had allowed the Rat Olympics, Police Olympics, and Dog Olympics, it took exception to the term Gay Olympic Games. Two years later, the USOC continued its harassment of the Gay Games and filed suit to recover legal fees in the amount of $96,600.”
“The word gay (though not its 3 later slang meanings) stems from the Old Provençal gai, <high spirited, mirthful>. A derivation of this term in turn from the Old High German gahi, <impetuous> (cf. modem German jah, <sudden>), though attractive at first sight, seems unlikely. Gai was a favorite expression among the troubadours, who came to speak of their intricate art of poetry as gai saber, <gay knowledge>. Despite assertions to the contrary, none of these uses reveals any particular sexual content. In so far as the word gay or gai has acquired a sexual meaning in Romance languages, as it has very recently, this connotation is entirely owing to the influence of the American homosexual liberation movement as a component of the American popular culture that has swamped the non-Communist world.
Beginning in the 17th century, the English word gay began to connote the conduct of a playboy or dashing man about town, whose behavior was not always strictly moral but not totally depraved either; hence the popularity of such expressions as <gay lothario>, <gay deceiver>, and <gay blade>. Applied to women in the 19th century (or perhaps somewhat before), it came to mean <of loose morals; a prostitute>: <As soon as a woman has ostensibly lost her reputation we, with grim inappositeness, call her gay> (Sunday Times, London, 1868).”
“The expansion of the term to mean homosexual man constitutes a tertiary stage of modification, the sequence being lothario, then female prostitute, then homosexual man.”
“The word (and its equivalents in other European languages) is attested in the sense of <belonging to the demimonde> or <given to illicit sexual pleasures>, even specifically to prostitution, but nowhere with the special homosexual sense that is reinforced by the antonym straight, which in the sense of heterosexual was known exclusively in the gay subculture until quite recently.”
“Although it has not been found in print before 1933 (when it appears in Noel Ersine’s Dictionary of Underworld Slang as gay cat, <a homosexual boy>), it is safe to assume that the usage must have been circulating orally in the United States for a decade or more. (As Jack London explains in The Road of 1907, gay cat originally meant – or so he thought – an apprentice hobo, without reference to sexual orientation.) In 1955 the English journalist Peter Wildblood defined gay as <an American euphemism for homosexual>, at the same time conceding that it had made inroads in Britain. Grammatically, the word is an adjective, and there has been some resistance to the use of gay, gays as nouns, but this opposition seems to be fading.”
“Many lesbian organizations now reject the term gay, restricting it to men, hence the spread of such binary phrases as <gay and lesbian> and <lesbian and gay people>.”
“Karl Heinrich Ulrichs (1825-1895), whose Forschungen zur mannmännhchen Liebe (Researches on Love between Males), published from 1864 to 1870, ranged in an encyclopedic manner over the history, literature, and ethnography of past and present.”
“In England John Addington Symonds may be considered the first gay scholar, since he composed two privately printed works, A Problem in Greek Ethics and A Problem in Modern Ethics, the latter of which introduced to the English-speaking world the recent findings of continental psychiatrists and the new vision of Ulrichs and Walt Whitman. Symonds was also a major contributor to the first edition of Havelock Ellis’ Sexual Inversion (German 1896, English 1897). At the same time the American university president Andrew Dickson White quietly inserted into his 2-volume History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom (1896) a comprehensive analysis and demolition of the Sodom legend. In the same year Marc-André Raffalovich published his Uranisme et unisexualité (Uranism and unisexuality), with copious bibliographical and literary material, some from German authors of the 19th century, which he supplemented at intervals in a series of articles in the Archives d’anthropologie criminelle down to World War I.”
“psychoanalytic biographies of famous homosexuals, a genre initiated by Freud’s philologically rather weak Eine Kindheitserinnerung des Leonardo da Vinci (A Childhood Reminiscence of Leonardo da Vinci; 1910).”
“The interest of geneticists in twin studies led to some papers on the sexual orientation of monozygotic and dizygotic twins, a field pioneered by Franz Kallmann. While certain issues continue to be disputed, the study of monozygotic twin pairs has revealed concordances as marked as those for intelligence and other character traits, albeit with a complexity in the developmental aspect of the personality that earlier thinkers had not fully appreciated.”
“black studies and women’s studies are by their very nature interdisciplinary. In 1976, for example, ONE Institute, the independent Los Angeles homophile education foundation, articulated the subject in the following fields: anthropology, history, psychology, sociology, education, medicine and biology, psychiatry, law and its enforcement, military, religion and ethics, biography and autobiography, literature and the arts, the homophile movement, and transvestism and transsexualism (An Annotated Bibliography of Homosexuality, New York, 1976).”
“In anthropology there is a continuing temptation to ethno-romanticism, that is over-idealizing the exotic culture one is studying, viewing it as natural, non-repressive, organic, and so forth.”
“The homosexuality of Genet’s characters is explicit, and the scenes of love-making attain the limit of physical and psychological detail, recounted in the argot of the French criminal underworld (which largely defies English translation) and in a style once possible only in pornographic novels sold <under the counter>. If the homosexuality of the heroes of Genet’s novels has a strong sado-masochistic component, their love is depicted with honesty and tenderness. The plot construction borders on free association, while the sordid and brutal aspects of male love are not suppressed or denied.” “Since French writing shapes literary trends throughout the world, the influence of Genet on future depictions of homosexual experience is likely to mount.”
“In the Passion of Saint Pelagius composed in Latin by Roswitha (Hrotswith) of Gandersheim, there is the story of the son of the king of Galicia in Spain who, captured by the Moslem invaders, was approached by Abderrahman with offers of the highest honors if he would submit to his pederastic advances but violently refused – at the cost of his life. The Latin poem on Lantfrid and Cobbo relates the love of two men, one homosexual, the other bisexual. A High German version of Solomon and Mololf composed about 1190 makes an allusion to sodomy, while the Eneid of Heinrich von Veldeke has the mother of Lavinia, the daughter of King Latinus of Italy accuse Aeneas of being a notorious sodomite to dissuade her from marrying him. Moriz von Craun, a verse narrative of ca. 1200, makes the emperor Nero the archetype of the mad sodomite, who even wishes to give birth to a child. In his rhymed Flauenbuch (1257), Ulrich von Lichtenstein presents a debate between a knight and a lady, in which the latter accuses men of preferring hunting, drinking, and boy-love to the service of women. About the same time the Austrian poet Der Strieker used references to Sodom and Gomorrah in his negative condemnation.”
“Prussia was the first German state that in 1794 abolished the death penalty for sodomy and replaced it with imprisonment and flogging. After 1810 many states (including Bavaria, Württemberg, and Hannover) followed the model of the Code Napoleon in France and introduced complete impunity for homosexual acts, a policy reversed in 1871 in favor of the anti-homosexual Paragraph 175 of the uniform Imperial Penal Code.”
“In German poetry, however, the homosexual theme was rare before the 19th century. Friendship between men is, to be sure, a frequent subject of poetry (especially in Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock, Johann Wilhelm Ludwig Gleim, Wilhelm Heinse, even in Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen and others), but the amicable feelings depicted in them are clearly demarcated from the longing of pederasts and sodomites, and the boundary between friendship and sexuality is seldom if ever crossed (though possibly in F.W.B. von Ramdohr, Venus Urania, 1798, Part 2, pp. 103ff.)”
“The flowering of a gay movement in the first third of the 20th century was the outstanding feature that set the homosexuals in Germany apart from those in other countries.”
“The campaign for the abolition of Paragraph 175 provoked an enormous literature of books, pamphlets, and articles pro and con, so extensive that by 1914 the criminologist Hans Gross could write that everything that anyone could ever have to say on the subject had by then appeared in print. There was also a profusion of gay and lesbian poetry, short stories, and novels. Such mainstream authors as Hans Henny Jahnn, Klaus Mann, Thomas Mann, Anna Elisabet Weihrauch, and Christa Winsloe also discussed the theme. This cultural efflorescence lent substance to the claim of Weimar Germany to be a land of cultural innovation, though to be sure the Republic had its dark side as well.”
“If until then Germany was probably unique and unparalleled in the world in terms of governmental liberalism and of opportunities for homosexual life, then the same was true in reverse for the Nazi era from 1933 to 1945: at least 10,000 homosexual men, stigmatized with the pink triangle, were confined in German concentration camps under the Holocaust during those 12 years, and many of them were killed.”
“In West Germany after about 1948 conditions returned to what they had been before 1933. Although the Nazi version of Paragraph 175 remained on the books, homosexual organizations, bars, and gay magazines were tolerated in many West German cities and in West Berlin. In East Germany, to be sure, only the milder pre-1933 version of paragraph 175 was in force, but homosexual life was subject to restrictions on the part of the state and the police, so that gay men and lesbians had scarcely any opportunity to organize and express their views freely.”
Richard Plant, The Pink Triangle, New York: Henry Holt, 1986.
“In 1891 Gide met Oscar Wilde, the flamboyant aesthete, who set about ridding him of his inhibitions – with seductive grace. Gide’s first really striking work of moral <subversion> was Les Nourritures terrestres (The Fruits of the Earth, 1897), a set of lyrical exhortations to a fictional youth, Nathanaël, who is urged to free himself of the Christian sense of sin and cultivate the life of the senses with sincerity and independence. During the political turmoil of the 1930s Gide returned to the same themes and stylistic manners in Les nouvelles nourritures (1935).”
“In 1895 he married his cousin, Madeleine Rondeaux, and suffered an acute conflict between her strict Christian values and his own yearning for self-liberation, together with his awakening homosexual drives. The never-ending battle within himself between the puritan and the pagan, the Biblical and the Nietzschean, caused his intellect to oscillate between two poles that are reflected in his succeeding books. In Les Caves du Vatican (The Vatican Cellars, 1914), the hero, Lafcadio, <lives dangerously> according to the Gidean formula and commits a seemingly senseless murder as a psychologically liberating <gratuitous act>. A further series of short novels have an ironic structure dominated by the viewpoint of a single character, while his major novel, Les Fauxmonnayeurs (The Counterfeiters, 1926) has a Chinese-box like structure meant to reflect the disorder and complexity of real life.”
“Limited in scope as they were, Gide’s four dialogues constituted a remarkable achievement for their time by blending personal experience, the French literary mode of detached presentation of abnormal behavior, the traditional appeal to ancient Greece, and the then quite young science of ethology – the comparative study of the behavior of species lower on the evolutionary scale.”
Gide, Retour de l’U.R.S.S. (Back from the USSR, 1936)
“This Mesopotamian figure ranks as the first tragic hero in world literature. The Epic of Gilgamesh has survived in Sumerian, Akkadian, and Hittite versions that go back to the 3rd millennium before our era. Lost from sight until the decipherment of the cuneiform script retrieved the literatures of early Mesopotamia, the epic is a blend of pure adventure, morality, and tragedy. Only the final version, that of Assurbanipal’s library in Nineveh, has survived in virtually complete form, but all the episodes in the cycle existed as separate poems in Sumerian. The setting of the story is the 3rd millennium, and the original language was Sumerian, the Paleoeurasian speech of the first literate civilization of Mesopotamia, which continued like Latin to be copied as a dead language of past culture even after it was displaced by the Eastern Semitic Akkadian.”
“Gilgamesh is announced at the outset as a hero: two-thirds god and one-third man, endowed by the gods with strength, with beauty, with wisdom. His sexual demands upon the people of Uruk are insatiable: <No son is left with his father, for Gilgamesh takes them all . . . His lust leaves no virgin to her lover, neither the warrior’s daughter nor the wife of the noble.> In reply to their complaints Aruru, the goddess of creation, forms Enkidu out of clay. <His body was rough, he had long hair like a woman’s. He was innocent of mankind; he knew not the cultivated land.> To tame the wild man a harlot offers her services, <she made herself naked and welcomed his eagerness, she incited the savage to love and taught him the woman’s art.> At the conclusion, the transforming power of eros has humanized him; the wild animals flee from him, sensing that as a civilized man he is no longer one of them. The metamorphosis from the subhuman and savage to his new self proves strikingly how love is the force behind civilization.”
“Gilgamesh has two dreams with symbolism which presages the homoerotic relationship which the gods have planned for him and the challenger Enkidu. In the Akkadian text there are puns on the words lusru, <ball (of fire), meteorite>, andiezru, <male with curled hair>, the counterpart of the harlot, and on hassinu, <axe>, and assinu, <male prostitute>. Gilgamesh’s superior energy and wisdom set him apart from others and make him lonely; he needs a male companion who can be his intimate and his equal at the same time, while their male bond stimulates and inspires them to action. After a wrestling match between Enkidu and Gilgamesh in which the latter triumphs, the two become comrades. Their erotic drive is not lost, but rather transformed and directed to higher objects; it leads to a homoerotic relationship that entails the rejection of Ishtar, the goddess of love. A liaison of this kind is not contingent on the physical beauty of the lover, it endures until death. Gilgamesh himself abandons his earlier oppressive conduct toward Uruk and comes to behave like a virtuous ruler who pursues the noble goals of fame and immortality through great deeds. But a dream warns Gilgamesh: <The father of the gods has given you kingship (but) everlasting life is not your destiny … Do not abuse this power, deal justly with your servants in the palace.>”
“To obtain the secret of everlasting life he journeys far across the sea to Utnapishtim, who tells him the Babylonian version of the story of the Deluge. On his return he carries with him a flower that has the power of conferring eternal youth, but loses it to a serpent lying beside a pool and so reaches Uruk empty-handed, yet still able to engrave the tale of his journey in stone. Gilgamesh has been transformed by a love that makes him seek not the pleasures of the moment, but virtue, wisdom, and immortality, hence the motif of the epic is that male bonding is a positive ingredient of civilization itself.”
George F. Held, “Parallels between The Gilgamesh Epic and Plato’s Symposium”, Journal of Near Eastern Studies, 42 (1983) (artigo)
BIOGRAFIAS PARTE II & III: “Settling at Weimar under the patronage of the ducal heir and elected to the Privy Council, he became leader in that intellectual center, associating with Wieland, Herder, and later Schiller. His visit to Italy recorded in Italienische Reise and probably involving pederastic adventures inspired him anew as did his intimate friendship with Schiller. Even after he married in 1806 he continued his frequent love affairs with women. His autobiographical Wilhelm Meister, a Bildungsroman or novel of character formation [probably boring…], and the second part of Faust (in 1832), exalted his reputation further, although he was already first in German literature. The non-exhaustive Weimar edition of his works extends to over 130 volumes.”
Knaben hebt ich wohl auch, doch
lieber sind mir die Mädchen,
Hab ich als Mädchen sie sätt, dient
sie als Knabe mir noch.
“If I have had enough of one as a girl, she still serves me as a boy.”
“In the play Egmont (1788) the hero’s enemy Alba is embarrassed by his son’s intense emotional bonding with Egmont. The figure of Mignon, the waif girl in Wilhelm Meister, could be androgynous. In his Travels in Switzerland [DV] he waxed rapturous over the sight of a nude comrade bathing in the lake, and in the West Eastern Divan (1819, enlarged edition, 1827), he used the pretext of being inspired by Persian poetry to allude to the <pure> love which a handsome cupbearer evokes from his master (sec. 9).”
“Paiderasteia, or the love of an adult male for an adolescent boy, was invested with a particular aura of idealism and integrated firmly into the social fabric. The erastes or lover was a free male citizen, often a member of the upper social strata, and the eromenos or beloved was a youth between 12 and 17, occasionally somewhat older. Pedophilia, in the sense of erotic interest in young children, was unknown to the Greeks and the practice never approved by them. An interesting question, however, is what was the average age of puberty for ancient Greek boys? For some men (the philobupais type), the boy remained attractive after the growth of the first beard, for most he was not – exactly as with the modern pederast.”
“It formed part of the process of initiation of the adolescent into the society of adult males, of his apprenticeship in the arts of the hunter and warrior. The attachment of the lover to his boy eroticized the process of learning, making it less arduous and more pleasurable, while reinforcing the bond between the mentor and his pupil.”
“a biological universal – the physical beauty and grace of the adolescent that invest him with an androgynous quality soon lost when he reaches adulthood.”
“The achievements of their own history necessarily rested upon the legacy of 3,000 years of cultural evolution in the Semitic and Hamitic nations. In technology and material culture they – and their successor peoples – never went far beyond the accomplishments of the non-Indo-European civilizations of the East. It was in the realm of theory and philosophy that the Greeks innovated – and created a new model of the state and society, a new conception of truth and justice that were the foundations of Western civilization.”
“Sir Francis Galton calculated in the late 19th century that in the space of 200 years the population of Athens – a mere 45,000 adult male citizens [número controverso] – had produced 14 of the 100 greatest men of all time. This legacy – the <Greek miracle> – owed no small part of its splendor to the pederastic ethos that underlay its educational system and its civic ideal.”
“Marriage and fatherhood were part of the life cycle of duties for which the initiation and training prepared the eromenos. Needless to say, family life did not hinder a male from pursuing boys or frequenting the geisha-like hetairai. Down to the 4th century BC, however, the really intense and reciprocal passion that the modern world calls romantic love was reserved for relationships between males. Only in the Hellenistic period (after 323 BC) was the additional possibility of love between man and wife recognized.”
A INSÂNIA E O RANCOR DO MESTRE: “The misinterpretations have been reinforced by the strictures of the elderly Plato in the Laws, where an element of resentment toward the young and of embitterment at his own failures and disappointments as a teacher seems to have been at work. This text, however it may anticipate later judeo-Christian attitudes and practices, was never typical of Greek thought on the subject. The evidence of the classical authors shows that as late as the early 3rd century of our era the Greeks accepted pederasty non-chalantly as part of the sexual order, without condemnation or apprehension.”
“The Greeks knew nothing of the Book of Leviticus, cared nothing for the injunctions it contained, and scarcely even heard of the religious community for which it was meant down to the beginning of the Hellenistic era, when Judea was incorporated into the empire of Alexander the Great. On the other hand,there is evidence that in the Zoroastrian religion pederasty was ascribed to a demonic inventor and regarded as an inexpiable sin, as a vice of the Georgians, the Caucasian neighbors of the Persians – just as the Israelites identified homosexual practices with the religion of the heathen Canaanites whose land they coveted and invaded. However, the antagonism between the Greeks and the Persians precluded any adoption of the beliefs and customs of the <evil empire> – against which they won their legendary victories. The Greek spirit – of which pederasty was a vital component – stood guard over the cradle of Western civilization against the encroachments of Persian despotism. Only on the eastern periphery of the Hellenic world – where Greeks lived as subject peoples under Persian rule – could the Zoroastrian beliefs gain a foothold.”
“Oral-genital sexuality seems not to have been popular, but this was probably for hygienic reasons specific to the ancient world.”
“The career of Sappho suggests that lesbian relations in ancient Greece took the same pattern, that is to say, they were corophile – between adult women and adolescent girls who were receiving their own initiation into the arts of womanhood. But the paucity of evidence makes it difficult to assay the incidence of the phenomenon, especially as Greek sexual mores were entirely androcentric – everything was seen from the standpoint of the adult male and free citizen. The subordinate status of women and children was taken for granted, and the effeminate man was the object of ridicule if not contempt, as can be seen in the plays of Aristophanes and his older contemporary Cratinus.”
“It is true that the more abstract thinking of the Greeks ultimately recognized the parallel between male and female homosexuality, beginning with a passage in Plato’s Laws (636bc) in which both are stigmatized as <against nature> – a concept which the Semitic mind, incidentally, lacked until it was adopted from the Greek authors translated in the Middle Ages.”
“Toward the end of the 2nd millennium the Mycenean era closed with a series of disasters, both natural catastrophes and wars – of which the Trojan war sung by Homer was an episode. During this period the Dorians invaded Greece, blending with the older stocks. One landmark paper on Greek pederasty, Erich Bethe’s article of 1907, ascribed pederasty to the military culture of the Dorian conquerors, an innovation ostensibly reflected in the greater prominence of the institution among the Dorian city-states of history.”
“The sexual lives of the Greeks were free of ritualistic taboos, but enacted in a context of comrade simplified in the devotion of Achilles and Patroclus, which foreshadowed the pederastic ideal of the Golden Age. The lyric poetry composed in the dawn of Greek literature was rich in allusions to male love, between gods and between mortals.”
“In a mere 4 centuries Greek civilization had matured into a force that intellectually and militarily dominated the world – and laid the foundations not just for Western culture, but for the entire global meta-system of today. What followed was the Hellenistic era, in which Greek thought confronted the traditions of the peoples of the east with whom the colonists in the new cities founded in Egypt and Syria mingled. The emergence of huge bureaucratic monarchies effectively crushed the independence of the city-states, eroding the base of the pederastic institution with its emphasis on civic initiative. The outcome of this period, once Rome had begun its eastward expansion, was Roman civilization as a derivative culture that blended Greek and indigenous elements. Even under Roman rule the position of the Greek language was maintained, and the literary heritage of previous centuries was codified in the form in which, by and large, it has been transmitted to modern scholars and admirers.”
“For nearly 200 years scholars have argued the Homeric question: Did one, two, or many authors create the two great epic poems known as the Illiad and the Odyssey? What were the sources and techniques of composition of the author (or authors)? The current consensus favors a single author utilizing a traditional stock of legends and myths – the final redaction may have taken place as late as 640 BC. A second question arises in connection with these epic poems: Did they recognize homoerotic passion as a theme, or was this an accretion of later times?” “Homer may not have judged the details of their intimacy suitable for epic recitation, but he was not oblivious to a form of affection common to all the warrior societies of the Eastern Mediterranean in antiquity. The peculiar resonance of the Achilles-Patroclus bond probably is rooted in far older Near Eastern epic traditions, such as the liaison between Gilgamesh and Enkidu in the Mesopotamian texts.”
PLATÃO CHATEADÍSSIMO: “The famous Athenian lawgiver Solon was also a poet, and in two surviving fragments (13 and 14) he speaks of pederasty as absolutely normal.”
“Despite the mutilated and fragmentary state in which Sappho’s poetry has been transmitted, she was hailed in antiquity as the <tenth Muse>, and her poetry remains one of the high points of lyric intensity in world literature. In the 19th century philologists tried to reconcile her with the Judeo-Christian tradition by dismissing the lesbian interpretation of her poems as libelous, and misinterpreting or misusing bits of biographical data to make her nothing but the strait-laced mistress of a girls’ finishing school.”
“Anacreon of Teos [Ceos?], who flourished in the mid-6th century, owes his fame to his drinking songs, texts composed for performance at the symposia, which inspired an entire genre of poetry: anacreontic.”
“Herodotus, the <Father of History>, used the data that he gathered on his
extensive travels to point up the relativism of moral norms. Among the phenomena that he reported was the Scythian institution of the Enarees, a shift in gender that puzzled the Greeks, who called it the nousos theleia or <feminine disease>, but can now be identified as akin to the shaman and the berdache/bardache of the sub-Arctic and New World cultures. Profiting from the insights of the pre-Socratic thinkers, Herodotus anticipated the findings of modern anthropology in regard to the role of culture in shaping social norms. The consequence of his relativistic standpoint was to discredit absolutist concepts of <revealed> or <natural> morality and to allow for a pluralist approach to sexual ethics.”
“Thanks to a surviving oration of Aeschines, the Contra Timarchum of 346 BC, we know of the restrictions that Athenian law placed on the homosexual activity of male citizens: the male who put his body in the power of another by prostituting himself incurred atimia or infamy, the gymnasia anathose who had authority over youth were subject to legal control, and a slave could not be the lover of a free youth. There is no evidence for parallel statutes elsewhere, and certainly no indication that homosexual behavior per se was ever the object of legal prohibition, or more stringently regulated than heterosexual, which had its own juridical norms.”
“In the writings of Plato and Xenophon, Socrates basks in a strongly homophile ambiance, as his auditors are exclusively male, even if he was no stranger to heterosexuality and had a wife named Xanthippe who has come down in history as the type of the shrewish wife. His chief disciple, Plato (ca. 429-347 BC), whose thought cannot easily be disentangled from that of his teacher, never married, and left a record of ambivalence toward sexuality and homosexuality in particular that is one of the problematic sides of his thinking. His influence on Western civilization has been incalculable. One of the ironies of history is that the atypical hostility to pederasty in the elderly Plato, probably reflecting both personal resentment and envy and the decline of the institution in the 4th century (while anticipating later <puritan> attitudes), was often received with enthusiasm in later centuries, becoming a Hellenic source of Christian homophobia.” “he inculcated the notion of sexual activity as ignoble and demeaning, which was integrated with the absolute <purity> of biblical Judaic ascetic ideal of complete asexuality which was to have fateful consequences for homosexuals in later centuries. A completely negative approach to pederasty emerges in one of his last works, the Laws, the product of the pessimism of old age disappointed by Athenian democracy and the failure of his ambitions at statecraft in Sicily. In the 1st book Plato calls homosexual acts <against nature> (para physin) because they do not lead to procreation, and in the 8th book (836b-839a) he proposes that homosexual activity can be repressed by law and by constant and unrelenting defamation, likening this procedure to the incest taboo. The designation of homosexual acts as <contrary to nature> found its way into the New Testament in a text that intertwined Judaic myth with Hellenic reasoning, Romans 1:18-32. This passage argues that <the wrath of God is revealed from heaven> in the form of the rain of water that drowned the Watchers and their human paramours and the rain of fire that obliterated the homosexual denizens of Sodom and Gomorrah. Later Christian thinkers were to insist that the morality of sexual acts was coterminous with procreation, and that any non-procreative gratification was <contrary to nature>, but this view never held sway in pagan antiquity, so that Plato himself cannot be charged with the tragic aftermath of this belief and the attempt to impose it upon the entire population by penal sanctions and by ostracism. The attempt of modern Christian historians to prove that Plato’s idiosyncratic later attitude corresponded to the mores of Athenian society, or of Greece as a whole, is unfounded.
Plato was succeeded by the almost equally influential Aristotle (384-322 BC), who sought to correct some of the imbalances in his teacher’s work and bring it more in line with experience.” “In the Nicomachean Ethics (1148b) he undertook to differentiate two types of homosexual inclination, one innate or constitutionally determined (<by nature>) and one acquired from having been sexually abused (<by habit>). He stated categorically that no fault attached to behavior that flowed from the nature of the subject (thereby contradicting Plato’s assertion that homosexuality per se was unnatural), while in the second type some moral fault could be imputed. In the 13th century Thomas Aquinas utilized this passage in arguing that sodomy was unnatural in general, but connatural in some human beings; yet in quoting Aristotle he suppressed the mention of homosexual urges as determined <by nature>, so that Christian theology has never been able to accept the claims of gay activists that their behavior had innate causes. At all events, Aristotle can be cited in favor of the belief that in some forms, at least, homosexuality is inborn and unmodifiable.
The successors of Plato and Aristotle, the Stoics, are sometimes regarded as condemnatory of pederasty, but a closer examination of their texts shows that they approved of boy-love and engaged in it, but counseled their followers to practice it in moderation and with ethical concern for the interests of the younger partner [= Epicureans].”
“the pseudo-Aristotelian Problemata (IV, 26) claims that the propensity to take the passive role in anal intercourse is caused by an accumulation of semen in the rectum that stimulates activity to relieve the tension.”
“pangenesis – the belief that the semen incorporated major parts of the body in microscopic form; yet the belief that the male seed alone determines the formation of the embryo (only in the 19th century was the actual process of fertilization of the ovum observed and analyzed).”
“The Hippocratic treatise On Airs, Waters, and Places touched upon the effeminacy of the Scythians, the so-called nasos theleia, which it ascribed to climate – a view that was to recur in later centuries. The Greek adaptation of late Babylonian astrology created the individual horoscope – which included the factors determining sexual characterology. Such authors as Teucer of Babylon and Claudius Ptolemy of Alexandria named the planets whose conjunctions foretold that an individual would prefer his or her own sex or would be effeminate or viraginous. Because Greek religion and law did not condemn homosexual behavior, it fell into the category of an idiosyncrasy of temperament which the heavenly bodies had ordained, not of a pathological condition that entitled the bearer to reprieve from the severity of the law. Ptolemy taught, for example, that if the influence of Venus is joined to that of Mercury, the individuals affected <become restrained in their relations with women but more passionate for boys> (Tetrabiblos, III, 13). The astrological texts make it abundantly clear that the ancients were familiar with the whole range of sexual preferences – a knowledge that psychiatry was to recoup only in modern times.”
“The modern Greeks derived their sexual mores, like their music, cuisine, and dress, from their overlords the Turks rather than from ancient Greece. During the long Ottoman domination from the fall of Byzantium in 1453 to 1821 and in Macedonia and Crete until 1911, and in Anatolia and Cyprus even today, the descendants of the Byzantines who did not convert to Islam preserved their language and religion. Orthodox bishops were given wide political authority over their flocks whom they helped the Turks fleece. The black (monastic) clergy were forbidden to marry, and they were often inclined to homosexuality. Greeks, like Armenians, often rose in the hierarchy at the Sublime Porte, sometimes as eunuchs. Also they served as Janissaries in the Ottoman regiments which were taught to revere the Sultan as their father, the regiment as their family, and the barracks as their home. Forbidden to marry, they engaged in sodomy, particularly pederasty, and in such Ottoman vices as opium and bribery. Along with the Armenians, Greeks became the chief merchants of the Empire, especially dominating the relatively backward Balkan provinces where they congregated in the cities and towns as Jews did in the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth.”
Winckelmann e Byron morreram durante a guerra de independência da Grécia.
“The Greek Anthology is another name for the Palatine Anthology preserved in a unique manuscript belonging to the Palatine Library in Heidelberg. It was assembled in the 10th century by the Byzantine scholar Constantine Cephalas on the basis of 3 older collections: (1) the Garland of Meleager, edited at the beginning of the 1st century BC; (2) the Garland of Philippus, which probably dates from the reign of Augustus; and (3) the Cycle of Agathias, collected in the reign of Justinian (527-535) and including only contemporary works. But in addition Cephalas incorporated in his anthology the Musa Puerilis or <Boy-love Muse> of Strato of Sardis, who probably flourished under Hadrian (second quarter of the 2nd century). It is probable that the segregation of the poems on boy-love from the rest of the anthology (with the mistaken inclusion of some heterosexual pieces) reflects the Byzantine attitude, quite different from that of the pagan Meleager who indifferently set the two themes side by side. These poems, assembled in the 12th book of the Anthology (with others scattered elsewhere in the collection), are monuments of the passion of an adult male for an adolescent boy (never another adult, as some modern scholars have suggested; XII, 4 is the most explicit testimony on this matter) that was an integral part of Greek civilization. The verses frankly reveal the mores and values of Greek pederasty, exalting the beauty and charm of the beloved youth, sounding the intensity of the lover’s attachment, and no less skillfully describing the physical practices to which these liaisons led, so that it is not surprising that the complete set of these poems was not published until 1764.”
“This sexual practice involves the insertion of one partner’s hand – and sometimes much of the arm – into the rectum of the other. Before attempting such insertion the nails are pared and the hand lubricated. Sometimes alcohol and drags are used by the receptive partner as relaxants. This practice acquired a certain popularity – and notoriety under the name of fistfucking – in a sector of the gay male leather/S&M community in the 1970s. A few lesbians have also reported engaging in it. A medical term, apparently uncommon, has been proposed for handballing: brachiproctic eroticism.
It need scarcely be stressed that handballing is dangerous in all its variations, as puncturing of the rectal lining may lead to infection and even death. Although handballing does not directly expose the passive partner to AIDS or to sexually transmitted diseases, by scratching or scarring the rectal wall it may create tiny portals for the invasion of microbes during a subsequent penetration. With the new emphasis on safe sex in the 1980s, handballing has greatly declined, and it will probably be relegated to history as one of the temporary excesses of the sexual revolution.”
“It may be conjectured that the recent resort to the practice is due to medical knowledge of operations in which the anus is dilated, since the ordinary individual scarcely credits that such enlargement is possible or desirable. In a late Iranian version of the binding and riding of the god of darkness Ahriman by the hero Taxmoruw, the demonic figure breaks loose by means of a trick and swallows the hero; by pretending to be interested in anal intercourse the brother of Taxmoruw manages to insert his arm into Ahriman’s anus and retrieve the body from his belly. The brother’s arm – the one that entered the demon’s anus – becomes silvery white and stinking, and the brother has to exile himself voluntarily so that others will not become polluted. The myth is interesting as linking the forbidden sexual activity with stigmatization and outlawry of the perpetrator. There seems to have been no term for handballing in the Greek language, though siphniazein (from the island of Siphnos) has been defined as to <insert a finger in the anus>. This harmless practice has long been known, and it may have served as a kind of modest precedent.”
HELIOGABALUS / ELAGABALUS
O imperador teria vivido apenas 18 anos – como regente, 4!
“he reigned in a style of luxury and effeminacy unprecedented even in the history of Rome. He sent out agents to comb the city for particularly well-hung partners for his couch, whom he made his advisers and ministers. His life was an endless search for pleasure of every kind, and he had his body depilated so that he could arouse the lusts of the greatest number. His extant portraits on coins suggest a sensual, even African type evolving through late adolescence. The refinements which he innovated in the spheres of culinary pleasure and of sumptuous interior decoration and household furnishing are mentioned by the historians of his reign as having survived him and found emulators among the Roman aristocracy of later times. For what Veblen called <conspicuous consumption> he set a standard probably unequaled until the Islamic middle ages.
His sexual personality cannot be reduced to a mere formula of passive-effeminate homosexuality, although this aspect of his erotic pleasure-seeking is the one stressed by his ancient biographers. He loved the role of Venus at the theatre and the passive role in his encounters with other men, yet he was married several times and even violated a Vestal virgin, but remained childless.”
“As high priest of the Syrian deity Elagabal he sought to elevate the cult of the latter to the sole religion of the Empire, yet he did not persecute the Christians. Family intrigues ultimately cost him the favor of the soldiers who murdered him and his mother on March 11, 222. Unique as he was in the history of eroticism and of luxury, he has inspired writers from the 3rd century biographer Aelius Lampridius in the Scriptores Historiae Augustas through the later treatments of Jean Lombard, Louis Couperus, and Stefan George to Antonin Artaud and Alberto Arbasino.”
“The genocide of Jews and Gypsies in Nazi-occupied Europe has overshadowed the persecution and murder of male homosexuals, which is only now beginning to be recognized and analyzed from the few surviving documents and memoirs. Regrettably, in the immediate post-war period most of those who wrote about the concentration and extermination camps, and even courts which dealt with the staffs and inmates of the camps, treated those sent there for violating the laws against homosexual offenses as common criminals deserving the punishment meted out to them by the Third Reich. The final insult to the victims of Nazi intolerance was the decision of the Bundesverfassungsgericht (Federal Constitutional Court) in Karlsruhe on May 10, 1957, which not only upheld the constitutionality of the more punitive 1935 version of Paragraph 175 of the Penal Code because it <contained nothing specifically National-Socialist> and homosexual acts <unquestionably offended the moral feelings of the German people>, but even recommended doubling the maximum penalty – from 5 to 10 years. If any other victims of National-Socialism had been rebuffed in this manner by a West German court, there would have been outraged demonstrations around the globe; but this one went unprotested and ignored – above all by the psychiatrists who until recently never missed an opportunity to assert that <homosexuality is a serious disease> – for which ostracism and punishment were the best if not the only therapy. Until the late 1980s homosexuals, along with Gypsies, were denied compensation by the West German authorities for their suffering and losses under the Nazis.”
“Günther (1891-1968), professor of rural sociology and racial science first at Berlin and then at Freiburg im Breisgau, the chief authority on such matters in the Third Reich, held that the genetically inferior elements of the population should be given complete freedom to gratify their sexual urges in any manner that did not lead to reproduction because they would painlessly eliminate themselves from the breeding pool.”
“National-Socialism in Germany, like Marxism-Leninism in Russia, was a conspiracy of the 17th and the 19th centuries against the 18th-century Enlightenment” OK
“Among all modern states for which figures can be compiled, Nazi Germany offers the horrible example of suicides increasing rather than decreasing in wartime.”
“Although dramatically dated to Mycenean times, the late 2nd millennium BC, the epics sometimes refer to things that cannot predate 650 or even 570, because interpolations existed in one form or another when 7th century poets cited the epics.”
“It is difficult to detect all interpolations and changes, especially additions of Attic terms as high culture became increasingly centered in Athens, where the Peisistratids in the mid-6th century had the epics recited annually at a festival, and many believe the first texts written well over a century after the latest possible date for Homer’s death. A definitive text resulted only from the efforts of 2nd century editors in Alexandria. These texts became almost sacred to the Greeks, whose education was based on them even until the fall of Constantinople to the Turks in 1453.”
“Homer failed to depict institutionalized pederasty, to which almost all subsequent writers referred, many making it central. Though poets and artists around 600 BC make the earliest unmistakable references to institutionalized pederasty, Homer mentioned Ganymede twice, <the loveliest born of the race of mortals, and therefore the gods caught him away to themselves, to be Zeus’ wine-pourer, for the sake of his beauty, so he might be among the immortals> (Iliad, 20, 233-35) and Zeus’ giving Tros, Ganymede’s father, <the finest of all horses beneath the sun and the daybreak> (Iliad, 5, 265ff.) as compensation for his son. Sir Moses Finley concluded that <the text of the poems offers no directly affirmative evidence at any point; even the two references to the elevation of Ganymede to Olympus speak only of his becoming cup-bearer to Zeus.>Sir Kenneth Dover denied that these passages implied pederasty: <It should not be impossible for us … to imagine that the gods on Olympus, like the souls of men in the Muslim paradise … simply rejoiced in the beauty of their servants as one ingredient of felicity.> However, the Abrahamic religions’ taboo on homosexuality did not exist in Hellenic and Etruscan antiquity. Societies that had the formula <eat, drink, and be merry> held that banquets should fittingly issue in sexual revelry. Anachronisms such as those of Finley and Dover should therefore be dismissed, even though Homer’s allusions to Ganymede may be pederastic interpolations like those ordered by the Peisistratids – successors of Solon, who introduced institutionalized pederasty into Athens – to antedate the cultural prominence of Athens.”
MAGNUM OPUS: Voyage aux regions equinoxiales du nouveau continent (30 vols.!)
Mas não só: Cosmos: Outline of a Physical Description of the World (5 vols.!) (1862)
O FIM DE UMA ERA: “It was the last attempt by a single individual to collect within the pages of a work of his own the totality of human knowledge of the universe; after his time the increasing specialization of the sciences and the sheer accumulation of data made such a venture impossible.” Embora Le Bon seja um respeitável polímata, outrossim.
“Through the accounts of his findings – models for all subsequent undertakings – he made significant contributions to oceanography, meteorology, climatology, and geography, and furthered virtually all the natural sciences of his time; but above all else he was responsible for major advances in the geographical and geological sciences.”
“The idea that sexual energy accumulates in the body until sufficient pressure is generated to require an outlet has over the centuries had considerable appeal. The notion acquires plausibility through observation of the wet dream, which eventually occurs in males if the semen is not evacuated through intercourse or masturbation.”
“The first statement of the doctrine is probably owing to the Roman philosopher-poet Lucretius who says that the semen gradually builds up in the body until it is discharged in any available body (On the Nature of Things, IV, 1.065).”
“As a device for relieving erotic tension, a homosexual outlet stands on the same plane as a heterosexual one. A curious attestation of the hydraulic concept comes from colonial America. In his reflections on an outbreak of <sodomy and buggery> in the Bay Colony, William Bradford (1590-1637) noted: <It may be in this case as it is with water when their streams are stopped or dammed up; when they get passage they flow with more violence and make more noise and disturbance, than when they are suffered to run quietly in their own channels.>”
“Some Victorians defended prostitution as a necessary evil. Without this safety valve, they held, the pent-up desires of men would be inflicted on decent women, whose security depends, ironically, on their <fallen> sisters. The Nazi leader Heinrich Himmler even extended this belief by analogy to hustlers and male homosexuals.”
“Despite its appeal, the metaphor is not unproblematic. The hydraulic idea rests upon materialist reductionism, identifying the accumulation of semen with the strengthening of sexual desire. Yet the two do not necessarily act in concert, as anyone knows who has visited some sexual resort such as a sauna and felt sexual desire far more frequently than the body is able to replenish its supply of semen.”
“This term refers not to literal incarceration or confinement but to an aspect of gender dysphoria – the idea that a human body can contain, locked within itself, a soul of the other gender. In their adhesion to this self-concept, many pre and post-operative transsexuals unknowingly echo a theme that has an age old, though recondite history.”
“Foreign as this idea is to the rationalistic Jew of the 20th century, and to the Biblical and Talmudic periods of Judaism as well, it is first mentioned by Saadiah Gaon (882-942), the spiritual leader of Babylonian Jewry, who rejected it as an alien doctrine that had found its way into Judaism from the Islamic cultural milieu.”
“The transmigration of a man’s soul into the body of a woman was considered by some Kabbalists a punishment for the commission of heinous sins, such as man’s refusing to give alms or to communicate his own wisdom to others.”
“In the Hollywood film Dog Day Afternoon (1975), which was based upon a real incident in Brooklyn a few years earlier, the character Leon asserts that <My psychiatrist told me I have a female soul trapped in a male body> (…) So a doctrine of medieval Jewish mysticism has entered the folklore of the gay subculture, and thence passed into the mainstream of American popular culture as a metaphor for a profound state of alienation.”
“The two thinkers increasingly diverged, particularly after Jung published his own ideas in a book entitled The Psychology of the Unconscious (1912), later renamed Symbols of Transformation. At the first meeting of the International Psychoanalytic Association in Munich in 1913, the rift between Jung and Freud turned to open hostility, and the two never met again. In April 1914 Jung resigned as President of the Association. Between 1913 and 1917 Jung went through a period of deep and intensive self-analysis; he now asserted that he had never been a Freudian, and set about creating his own school, which he dubbed analytical psychology in contrast to psychoanalysis.” Diferentão…
“his Collected Works amount to eighteen volumes.” “He treated not only psychology and psychotherapy, but also religion, mythology, social issues, art and literature, and such occult and mystical themes as alchemy, astrology, telepathy and clairvoyance, yoga, and spiritualism.”
“A polymath [raça resiliente!], Keynes cultivated many interests, from book collecting to probability theory. His real importance, however, stems from the epistemic break he achieved with the classical theory of economics, changing the landscape of that discipline for all time. Keynes was no ivory-tower theorist, and the 30-year boom in Western industrial countries (1945-75) has been called the Age of Keynes.”
“In the Apostles he met his lifelong friends Lytton Strachey and Leonard Woolf. Believing himself ugly, Keynes tended to be shy in the presence of the undergraduates he admired. In 1908, however, he began a serious affair with the painter Duncan Grant, whom he later said to be the only person in whom he found a truly satisfying combination of beauty and intelligence.”
“In 1908, however, he obtained a lecturer-ship in economics at King’s College, and the courses he gave there were the foundation of his later writings in the field. As editor of the Economic Journal he actively promoted new trends in the discipline outside of Cambridge. Yet he did not turn immediately to the core of the subject, as he spent a number of years writing a challenging Treatise on Probability, which was published in 1921.”
ESCASSEZ DE RECURSOS (GAYS) & SEMENTES DO NAZISMO: “Keynes elected to enter the Treasury where, despite the chronic disapproval of the Prime Minister, David Lloyd George, he worked wonders in managing the wartime economy. During this period the homosexual members of Bloomsbury (Keynes included) found their supply of eligible young men cut off, and began to engage in flirtations and even liaisons with women. After the end of the war Keynes spent a frustrating period as an adviser at the Paris peace conference [for British to see!], trying to limit voracious Allied demands for reparations from defeated Germany. Returning to London, he set down his pungent reflections on the event in what became his most widely read book, The Economic Consequences of the Peace (1919), which eroded the resolve of the Allies to enforce the Treaty of Versailles, at least in its financial provisions.
In 1925 Keynes, now famous, married the noted ballerina Lydia Lopokova. He became an adviser to government and business, consolidating his practical knowledge of economic affairs. These experiences contributed to his great book, General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (1936).”
[PET-ROYAL]TIES: “Economic difficulties after 1975 subjected Keynesian views, which had become orthodoxy, to contemporary reassessment.”
“Surprisingly, in the decades after the conviction of Oscar Wilde, his numerous affairs with young men never caused the slightest legal or even social trouble. This charmed life can be explained only by his combination of extreme personal brilliance, family and professional connections, and remarkable self-confidence.”
KLEIST HEINRICH VON (1777-1811)
“German playwright and short story writer, whose The Broken Pitcher is esteemed as possibly the greatest of (and among the few) German comedies. Overshadowed by his contemporary, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kleist’s significance came to light only after his suicide at age 34, a secretive joint pact made with a terminally ill female friend.
Kleist’s slim literary production (8 plays and 8 short stories) vividly and violently captures the historical break between Enlightenment rationalism and Romantic mysticism, often framed as either a psychological conflict (Das Käthchen von Heilbronn, Penthesilea) or a political one (Prinz Friedrich von Homburg, Die Hermannsschlacht). A profound sense of the irrational and absurd permeates Kleist’s works. In stories such as Michael Kohlhaas or Earthquake in Chile, individuals stand powerless before arbitrary circumstances. Kleist’s remarkable heroines, who bear uncanny resemblance to Kleist psychologically, act from the unconscious, for example when The Marquise of O. places a newspaper ad in hopes of discovering the gentleman responsible for her pregnant condition, or when Penthesilea’s confusion between love and war leads her, while intending to kiss her lover Achilles, instead to tear him from limb to limb with her bare hands and teeth.”
LAUTRÉAMONT, o Conde que faltava ao Marquês
“Ducasse [nome de batismo] certainly shows more strongly the influence of Baudelaire and Sade than does any other writer. Like Sade, he is rarely studied in universities.”
LAWRENCE, DAVID HERBERT (1885-1930)
“Born in a mining area of Nottinghamshire, Lawrence derived much of the problematic of his work from the tension between his coal-miner father, representing for him the physical and the elemental, and his mother, a former school-teacher, who stood for the world of higher culture, politeness, and civilization. Having attended a 2-year teacher training course in Nottingham (his only higher education), Lawrence wrote two early novels, The White Peacock (1911) and The Ties-passer (1912), while teaching at Croydon. In 1912 he eloped with the German-born Frieda von Richthofen Weekley, and the two led a bohemian life of wandering on the continent until the outbreak of World War I. During this period he wrote and published his first masterpiece, Sons and Lovers (1913), an intensely autobiographical novel [more so?].
“Women in Love(1921) [currently reading!] has, despite the title, an extraordinary emphasis on the male love affair (though it is non-genitally expressed [forçação de barra, i.m.o.]) between the wealthy Gerald Crich and the school-teacher Rupert Birkin. These aspects were further explored in the Prologue to the book [!], which Lawrence withheld from publication.”
“In the famous Residencia de Estudiantes, he met and collaborated with such future celebrities as Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí, with the latter of whom he had an amorous relationship of several years’ duration.”
“An extensive literature exists concerning the mechanics of and motives for his death, which immediately became an international incident and a symbol of fascist stupidity and anti-intellectualism. Lorca’s leftist sympathies, friends, and relatives would be sufficient to explain his execution, but much evidence suggests that his sexual orientation, activities, and writings were at least as important.”
A CANALHA (ESPERO QUE NÃO CUIDEM DO MEU ESPÓLIO!): “The House of Bernarda Alba, suppressed by his family, in 1945.”
MCCARTHYISM (BOECHATISMO NO BRASIL CONTEMPORÂNEO)
“The political tactics of the United States Senator from Wisconsin Joseph R. McCarthy (1908-1957)(*) have since the 50s been labeled McCarthyism. They consisted in poorly founded but sensationally publicized charges against individuals in government service or public life whom McCarthy accused on the Senate floor of being Communists, security risks, or otherwise disloyal or untrustworthy. Senator McCarthy’s campaign did not spare <sex perverts in government>, and so it made homosexuality an issue in American political life for the first time since the founding of the republic.” Homossexualidade restrita ao Triângulo das Bermudas.
(*) Oxalá nosso expoente morresse tão jovem! (P.S.: Escrito antes de sua inesperada – hoho, que clichê – morte!)
“It is also noteworthy that the danger of blackmail which Magnus Hirschfeld and his Berlin Scientific-Humanitarian Committee had used as an argument for the repeal of Paragraph 175 was now turned against homosexuals to deny them employment in the name of <national security>. This factor and others worked so strongly in McCarthy’s favor that despite bitter opposition he was reelected in 1952 in the Eisenhower landslide that brought the Republican Party back to the White House after 20 years of Democratic rule.
Once the Republicans had become the majority party for a brief time, McCarthy’s tactics became a source of embarrassment to them [huhu, quantas semelhanças…], and in 1954 a campaign was launched against him in the Senate which included the (true) accusation that a young University of Wisconsin graduate employed in his office in 1947 to handle veterans’ affairs had been arrested as a homosexual and then promptly fired, and the (probably false) accusation that McCarthy himself was a homosexual, which Senator Ralph Flanders of Vermont included in his denunciation. However, it was alleged that McCarthy’s marriage in 1953 at the age of 45 was motivated by his need to squelch the rumors of his own sexual deviation; the marriage remained childless, though the couple did adopt a little girl. What is significant in retrospect is that Roy Cohn, a young attorney who was one of McCarthy’s chief aidés [sponsored by him] during his heyday, was a lifelong homosexual who died of AIDS in 1986 [meme Cazuza de direita]. Censured by the Senate in 1954, McCarthy thereafter faded in political importance, and when he died in 1957 no great wave of emotion went through the ranks of either his friends or his enemies.”
“The policy of denying employment to homosexuals on moral grounds and as security risks, however, remained long after McCarthy himself.”
“In France, after André Gide published his negative reflections on his trip to the Soviet Union in 1936-37, he was attacked by his former Communist associates as a pédé (faggot).”
“The sexual aspect of McCarthyism has an ancestry going as far back as Aeschines, Cicero, and the Byzantine Emperor Justinian (r. 527-565), whose laws against sodomites forged the <crime of those to whom no crime could be imputed>, a weapon for political intimidation and blackmail that even the enlightened 20th century has not deprived of its cutting edge.”
“the term <p(a)edophilia> was first used in English only as recently as 1906, by Havelock Ellis. It had previously appeared as a specific form of sexual pathology in a German article of 1896 by Richard von Krafft-Ebing. Because the term <pedophilia> originated in a medical context and today connotes disease, efforts have been made to replace it. Pederasty is sometimes used as a synonym, or as a term restricted to post-pubescent adolescents, but in the present writers’ view, it should properly be restricted to the Greek custom it originally designated, which, though a form of pedophilia as we understand it, is not congruent with it.” “The earlier average age for puberty within the last century also means that classical texts (and even more recent ones) which speak of relations with mid-teenage boys were not necessarily referring to sexually mature individuals. (The term ephebophile has been used to describe erotic attraction to boys in their late teens, who are considered adults in many if not all cultures.)” “woman/girl (korophile)” “<Child molestation> or <abuse>, terms current in the media, and in psychological and legal discourse, are neither descriptive of the phenomenon, nor value-free, as academic discourse requires.
That variant of pedophilia occurring between men and boys – male homosexual pedophilia – will be the chief focus of this article. This choice is dictated by several considerations, including the context of the article, the dearth [escassez] of research on korophile relationships, and the fact that until very recently man/boy relationships were accepted as a part, and indeed were a major part, of male homosexuality.”
“pedophilia might be considered a remnant, more evident in some persons than others, of the instinct to nurture and protect the young of the species, which in human development has come to serve an educational (including sex-educational) or initiatory purpose in some societies. The attempt to root pedophilia in man’s biological inheritance is controversial, but a cross-cultural survey of man/boy pedophilia at least suggests that it is a universal phenomenon, which, when accepted by a society, generally carries a socially constructed meaning related to the acculturation process for boys.”
“Several of these societies (as the Melanesians) believe that without receiving the man’s semen through fellatio the boy cannot physically mature.”
TRANSIÇÃO GRÉCIA-ROMA: “As the function of same-sex relationships increasingly became hedonistic, the age limits broke down: we find increasing references to homosexuality between men (particularly in the satiric poets, who make it clear that this was still scorned) and, to a lesser extent, to the sexual use of very young children.”
“That Ganymede was more than an artistic convention is shown by the number of artists who were charged with sodomy with boys, especially their studio assistants. Histories of the Renaissance record similar charges involving popes, poets, and nobles.”
“Incarcerated pedophiles continue to be subject to coercive procedures to alter their sexual interest or reduce its level. Although surgical castration is no longer employed, chemical dosages and aversion therapy may be used without the subject’s consent.”
“Much of the <research> that exists on pedophilia today reflects a predetermination that adult-child sexual contacts are evil or pathological, and merely documents the point of view with which the authors began. There has been no lack of evidence by which such negative pre-suppositions could be supported, because in the same way that studies of homosexuality until quite recently were limited by the source of their research subjects, resulting in a portrayal of homosexuals as criminal, troubled, and unhappy, most studies of pedophilia examine only cases which have come before either courts or psychiatrists, precisely those where the subjects are most under stress or disturbed. In many countries, research into pedophile relationships under other circumstances is legally
impossible: if a researcher should find a healthy, quietly functioning relationship he or she would be required to report it for prosecution under <child protection> laws. These factors, plus the sensationalism surrounding the topic, assure that much of what is written on the subject is, and will continue to be, worthless.”
“Pedophile organizations have linked their arguments to support of the rights of children. While emphasizing that these rights most certainly include the power to say ‘no’ to any unwanted sexual contact as well as the opportunity to say ‘yes’ to contacts children desire, some groups go further than others in espousing a broad range of children’s liberation issues. Related to the question of legal rights for children is the issue of the child’s consent in pedophile relationships. Those speaking for the protection of children frequently assert that children are incapable of consenting to such sexual relationships, sometimes justifying this assertion by the child’s lack of experience or knowledge of long-range consequences of an act. It has been answered that children can and do consent, or at least are quite capable of rejecting experiences they find distasteful, and that the proper response is to empower children to be able to say ‘no’ effectively. This impasse raises the issue of what consent means – freedom to refuse, simple assent, or an <informed> consent that is probably not realized in most human relationships? Closely related to this is the issue of power, and the assertion that the power imbalance between the adult and the younger partner in a pedophile relationship is so great that it inevitably leads to coercion and exploitation. Various responses have been made: either that the power imbalance is not so clear-cut as the critics state, particularly citing the power of the child to terminate the relationship; or that while power imbalances are inherent in all human relationships, they do not necessarily lead to exploitation, but can be used for benevolent ends, and the real issue is not the power imbalance but the use of power.
Child pornography is the sharpest point of attack on pedophilia and pedophiles. Included in this attack are the imputation that children are always abused in the production of such images, and the fear that such images will stimulate the abuse of children. It has been shown that this issue has been exploited for political purposes, and the statistics on the amount of such material exaggerated beyond proportion. Despite rhetoric, it has not been demonstrated that any more connection exists between pedophilia and child pornography than between any other sexuality and its pornography: either to show that pedophiles are more likely to create or use pornography than other persons, or that child pornography encourages sexual contacts with children. Indeed, the Kutschinsky study of the Danish experience with pornography, which has never been refuted, demonstrated that sexual assaults on children declined with the availability of pornography. Pedophiles who have responded to this issue have noted that there is no reason that depictions of children nude or even engaged in sexual actions should be any more or less objectionable than such depictions of adults, and argue that the true issue, as with all pornography, is whether coercion actually is employed in making it. The issues of child prostitution and the sexual exploitation of children in Third World countries have also been used to attack pedophiles and, by implication, pedophilia. Once it is acknowledged that pedophiles are by no means the only persons who engage in <sex tourism> or patronize prostitutes, the debate again seems to resolve itself into issues of power and consent. A defense has been offered that the right of self-determination in sexual behavior for the individual choosing prostitution should apply here. Poverty, however, may diminish the individual freedom of choice in these situations.”
???, Men and Boys[“America’s first anthology of homosexual poetry”];
Bleibtreu-Ehrenberg, Tabu Homosexualität: Die Geschichte eines Vorurteils (The taboo of homosexuality: The history of a prejudice), 1978;
______., Mannbarkeitsriten: Zur institutionellen Päderastie bei Papuas und Melanesiern (Rites of passage into manhood: On institutional paederasty in Papuas and Melanesians), 1980;
______., Der Weibmann: Kultischer Geschlechtswechsel im Schamanismus, eine Studie zur Transvestition und Transsexualität bei Naturvölkern (Androgynous: Cultic sex change in shamanism, a study on transvestism and transsexualism in primitives), 1984;
______., Paidika 1/3 (The Journal of Paedophilia): Der pädophile Impuls: Wie lernt ein junger Mensch Sexualität? (The paedophile impulse: Toward the Development of an Aetiology of Child-Adult Sexual Contacts from an Ethological and Ethnological Viewpoint), 1988;
Cook & Howells, Adult Sexual Interest in Children, 1981;
Fraser, Death of Narcissus, 1976;
Mackay, Books of the Nameless Love, 1913(sécs. XIX-XX; o pai do “associacionismo pedofílico”);
Theo Sandfort, The sexual aspect of paedosexual relations: The experiences of 25 boys with men, 2000.
“Through a large inheritance from his father the celebrated misanthrope enjoyed financial independence so that he could devote his life completely to philosophy. Even today Schopenhauer’s ethic of compassion possesses great philosophical significance.”
“Schopenhauer’s teleologically oriented conception of nature therefore had to assume in male homosexual behavior – the only form he discussed – a <stratagem of nature> (in the words of Oskar Eichler). Referring to Aristotle he hypothesized that young men (supposedly boys just past puberty) and likewise men who are too old (the magic boundary is here the age of 54) are not capable of begetting healthy and strong offspring, because their semen is too inferior. As nature is interested in perfecting every species, in men older than 54 <a pédérastie tendency gradually and imperceptibly makes its appearance>. When he formulated this argument Schopenhauer himself was 71 years old, so that he could have harbored a homosexual tendency for some years.”
“Schopenhauer was himself the father of at least two illegitimate children and had many unhappy affairs with women. He passionately admired Lord Byron and like him came to the conclusion that women could be considered beautiful only by <the male intellect clouded by the sexual instinct>. In intellectual and aesthetic respects Schopenhauer had homosexual preferences. In a letter to his admirer Julius Frauenstadt he stressed that <even women’s faces are nothing alongside those of handsome boys>. Bryan Magee hypothesizes that the philosopher systematically suppressed his gay tendencies, a view shared by Oskar Eichler and others. Thirty years after the publication of the third edition ofThe World as Will and RepresentationOswald Oskar Hartmann adopted Schopenhauer’s teleological explanation of homosexuality, suggesting that the first champions of homosexual rights voluntarily followed Schopenhauer’s arguments.”
“In its strongest form, lesbian separatism means social, cultural, and physical separation from all who are not lesbians. As society is now constituted this option is possible only for a very few. Many lesbians who regard themselves as separatists seek to live and work in circumstances that are as far as possible <women’s space>, without insisting on the absolute exclusion of men.”
“Aristophanes’ play Lysistrata (411 BC) shows Athenian women seceding from their city in a <sex strike>, but only temporarily – until the men agree to make peace. Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1860-1935), a pioneering American socialist and feminist, wrote a novel, Herland (1915; reprinted 1979), depicting a Utopia in Africa populated only by women.”
“Outsiders tend to label lesbian separatists as <women who hate men>. In their defense, separatists often say that what they are opposed to are the domineering, aggressive aspects of male behavior, rather than men themselves. They wish to make a clear statement that will set them apart from the ambivalent stance of heterosexual women, even those who profess feminism. Separatists believe that such straight women enter too readily into complicity with the power structure of patriarchy; by continuing to meet the sexual and emotional needs of men, these women give aid and comfort to the enemy.
Some women choose to form communes on <women’s land>, setting themselves apart from all males, including male children and animals. In so doing they hold that they are creating liberated zones in which their natures can grow unhampered by the dictates of patriarchy.”
“Some women have entered lesbian separatism for a number of years as part of a process of personal growth, only to emerge later with a more complex position. This seems to have been the experience of a principal theorist of the movement, Charlotte Bunch, who remains a radical lesbian feminist.”
“Of tenant farmer stock and the son of a glover, Shakespeare was born in the provincial town of Stratford-upon-Avon in England; however, the very few facts known about his life are derived from various legal documents. In 1582, he married Anne Hathaway, with whom he had 3 children within the next 3 years; the following 5 years are unaccounted for, but by 1594 he was involved in the theatre world in London as both an actor and a playwright. He enjoyed an increasingly successful theatrical career until his retirement in 1612 and his return to Stratford.”
“Shakespeare’s prolonged separation from his wife and the stipulation in his will that she inherit his <second best bed> has sparked much debate about his sexuality.”
“Historically, theatrical companies of Shakespeare’s time did not employ women; instead, their roles were played by boys, apprentices to the companies. In adherence to the laws and sympathies of the times, the plays were, therefore, unable to display any overtly sexual behavior, but one of Shakespeare’s most frequent plot devices was to have his heroines disguise themselves as boys, particularly in the comedies. Thus, what in reality was a boy pretending to be a woman pretending to be a boy leads to some psychologically acute and complex scenes with homoerotic suggestions, such as the encounters between Rosalind (as Ganymede, a name rich in suggestiveness) and Orlando in As You Like It and Viola (as Caesario) and Orsino in Twelfth Night.
“For more substantive evidence, one must turn instead to Shakespeare’s sequence of 154 poems in the form of sonnets, published surreptitiously in 1609 and immediately protested by their author. Probably intended as a personal exercise for private circulation, the sonnets may be the works that reveal something of the man himself; in them, Shakespeare names the persona Will, an obviously personal and intimate diminution of William, and, as in most of the Renaissance sonnet sequences, their subject is erotic love. Dedicated to Mr. W.H., who has been variously identified as the Earl of Southampton, a boy actor named Willy Hewes, Shakespeare himself (in a misprint of his initials), someone unknown to history, or someone invented, the first 126 are clearly homoerotic, while most of the others concern a woman conventionally called <the Dark Lady>. Historically, those scholars who begrudgingly admit to their subject matter try to discount their message. Most claim that the attraction the persona feels for the fair young man is either platonic or unconsummated; others assert that the poems are only examples of the Renaissance male friendship tradition. Still others insist on the fallacy of equating the persona with the poet and confusing literature with autobiography.”
Joseph Pequigney, Such Is My Love: A Study of Shakespeare’s Sonnets, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985.
“In early life he was interested in the scientific philosophy of his time and is said to have associated with Archelaus the physicist, but in the period best known to posterity he had abandoned these interests and was concerned solely with the right conduct of life, a quest which he conducted by the so-called <Socratic> method of cross-examining the individuals whom he encountered. While serving in the army he gained a great reputation for bravery, and as one of the presidents of the Athenian Assembly at the trial of the generals after the battle of Arginusae, he courageously refused to put an illegal motion to the vote despite the fury of the multitude.”
“There has been considerable dispute over the precise meaning of the indictment, but the first part seems not to have been serious, while the second amounted to a charge that he had a <subversive> influence on the minds of the young, which was based on his known friendship with some of those who had been most prominent in their attacks on democracy in Athens. He made no attempt to placate the jury and was found guilty and sentenced to die by drinking a cup of hemlock.”
“He probably rejected the conventional Greek religious beliefs of his time, yet professed or created no heterodox religious doctrines. From time to time he had paranormal experiences, signs, or warnings which he interpreted as guideposts to his own conduct.
His sexual life, apart from the unhappy marriage, reflected the Greek custom of paiderasteia to the fullest. He was both the teacher of the young men who frequented his circle and the lover of at least some of them. As a boy of 17 he had been the favorite of Archelaus, because he was in the bloom of youthful sensuality, which later gave place to serious intellectual concerns.”
“he was never given to a coarse and purely sensual pederasty; if the beauty of the young Alcibiades made an intense and lasting impression on him, he never forgot his duty as a teacher to guide his youthful pupils toward perfection.” “As a bisexual Hellene, Socrates was always responsive to the beauty of the male adolescent and craved the companionship of young men; as a philosopher he practiced and taught the virtues of moderation and self-control. He endures as one of the outstanding examples in antiquity of a teacher for whom eros was an inspiration and a guide.
Because Socrates is a major figure in Western tradition, his sexual nature posed a continual problem. From Ficino to Johann Matthias Gesner (1691-1761) scholars sought to address the question discreetly. The Marquis de Sade was bolder, using socratiser as a verb meaning to sodomize. Even today, however, many classicists choose to evade the problem.”
SODOM AND GOMORRAH
“These legendary cities have been traditionally located in the vicinity of the Dead Sea, where they constituted two members of a pentapolis, the Cities of the Plain. According to the Old Testament account in Genesis 14, 18, and 19, God overthrew 4 of the 5 cities in a rain of brimstone and fire. The names of Sodom and Gomorrah, especially the former, have become proverbial. Echoes of the episode recur in the Bible and in the Koran, as well as in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic exegetical and homiletic writings. From the first city, Jewish Hellenistic Greek formed the derivative sodomites, from which medieval Latin obtained the noun of agent sodomita – as a result, the connection with male homosexuality is for many axiomatic. However the matter is more complex.”
“The ancient world’s rudimentary science of geology correctly related this barrenness to the circumstance that the water level of the Dead Sea had in prehistoric times been far higher; the sinking of the water level had exposed the previously inundated, now strikingly arid and sterile region to the gaze of the traveler.”
“to the Bedouin living east and south of the Dead Sea it suggested the etiological inference that at one time the area surrounding this salinized body of water had been a fruitful garden belt. Yet the inhabitants of the cities of the plain had even in the midst of their abundance and prosperity denied hospitality to the poverty-stricken and the wayfarer, while the luxury in which they wallowed led them inevitably into effeminacy and vice (the parallel in the Hellenistic world was the city of Sybaris, whose proverbial self-indulgence gave the English language the word sybaritic). For this reason they were punished by the destruction of their cities and the conversion of the whole area into a lifeless desert.”
“In Genesis 14:12 Lot is taken captive when Sodom is conquered by the 4 kings who have allied themselves against the Cities of the Plain; Abraham saves him by military intervention in the manner of a tribal sheikh with his retinue of 318 warriors. In 19:4-9 the Sodomites threaten Lot’s guests with gang rape, but are miraculously blinded and repelled, and in 19:13, 15 the angelic visitors warn Lot of the imminent destruction of the city so that he and his family can leave just in time to escape the rain of brimstone and fire. This underlying motif explains why Lot later <feared to dwell in Zoar> (19:30), even though God has spared the place as a reward for his model hospitality toward the 2 visitors. Over the centuries Sodom and Gomorrah, along with the Babylon of the Book of Revelation, came to symbolize the corruption and depravity of the big city as contrasted with the virtue and innocence of the countryside, a notion cherished by those who idealized rural life and is still present, though fading in 20th century America.”
“These volcanic eruptions, which have left traces still to be seen at the present day, inspired the <rain of brimstone and fire> (burning sulfur) of Genesis 19:24, which supplemented the notion that the 4 cities had been <overthrown> (destroyed by an earthquake) that figures in Genesis 19:25.” Sempre o nº 4!
+ Judges 19; Romans 1:18
“the currency in antiquity of world destruction legends, in which the earth is annihilated either by water (kataklysmos) or by fire (ekvyrosis). The story of Noah and the deluge is the rendering of the first in the book of Genesis, while the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is a localization of the second, in which the catastrophe is limited to 4 cities in the vicinity of the Dead Sea (Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim) even though the epilogue involving Lot and his daughters clearly derives from a universal conflagration myth.”
“If the human race were annihilated with the exception of a single family, the earth could be repeopled only by means of sexual unions ordinarily condemned as incestuous.”
“World destruction fantasies [are] associated in modern clinical experience with the early stages of schizophrenia.”
“Astrological literature supplied the ancients with an entire list of calamities that betokened divine wrath, as in Luke 21:11, all of which were later ascribed to retribution for <sodomy>. Fear of homosexual aggression plays a role in these paranoid fantasies, of the sort analyzed by Freud in the classic Schreber case.”
“The notion of sodomy is an innovation of Latin Christianity toward the end of the 12th century; it is not found in Jewish or Byzantine writings.” “In the late Middle Ages the tendency of the allegorizing mind to parallelism led to the notion that Gomorrah, the twin city of Sodom, had been a hotbed of lesbianism, even though there was nothing in either Testament that would suggest such a construction.”
TURING, ALAN (1912-1954)
“He seems to have been a brilliant, awkward boy whose latent genius went unnoticed by all his teachers; he also had no friends until his very last years at Sherborne. Then he fell in love with a fellow science enthusiast, Christopher Morcom: the Platonic friendship was returned, and Alan Turing was for the first time in his life a happy young man. He had dreams of joining Christopher at Trinity, to pursue science together – unfortunately, Christopher Morcom suddenly died (from a much earlier infection with bovine tuberculosis).”
“Turing spent two years in America, at Princeton University, and, on his return to Britain, was drafted into British cryptanalysis for the war effort. Turing was already unusual among mathematicians for his interest in machinery; it was not an interest in applied mathematics so much as something which did not really have a name yet – applied logic. His contribution to the design of code-breaking machines during the war led him deeper and deeper into the field of what would now be called computer programming, except that neither concept existed at the time. He and a colleague named Welshman designed the Bombe machines which were to prove decisive in breaking the main German Enigma ciphers. For his contribution to the Allied victory in World War II Turing was named an Officer of the British Empire (O.B.E.) in 1946. (…) He was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1951.”
“The earliest inventor of such a device was the eccentric 19th century Charles Babbage, who could not obtain the necessary hardware to implement his ideas.”
“He was brought to trial and sentenced to a year’s probation under the care of a psychiatrist, who proceeded to administer doses of female hormone to his patient, this being the current <wonder-therapy> which replaced castration as an attempt to kill the sexual instinct. For the entire year, Turing underwent the humiliation of femininization (<I’m growing breasts!>, he confided to a friend), but emerged seemingly intact from the public ordeal. He committed suicide in 1954, by eating an apple he had laced with cyanide.”
A VIDA TEM DESSAS: “Often acclaimed as America’s greatest poet, Whitman, of working-class background, was self-taught, but as a printer, school teacher, journalist, and editor he contributed fiction and verse in the worst modes of the day to the best literary journals. There is no evidence of his genius until he suddenly began to write scraps of what was to become Leaves of Grassin his notebooks.”
“It has in fact been argued that Leaves is an inverted mystical experience. This work, which encompassed his complete poetic opus, was first published in 1855 with 12 poems (Song of Myself being rather lengthy); the second edition (1857) had 32, the third (1860) 156, and so on through various printings and editions until 1881. Beginning in 1860, Whitman not only added poems (including the homoerotic Calamus collection), but dropped them, changed them, and rearranged the order. He has often been criticized for making changes, but he clearly did not do so for purposes of concealment.”
“In his more programmatic poems, Whitman was always careful to say he and she, him and her. Women are permitted to have sexual lives, and he sympathizes with a prostitute, but they are generally thought of and idealized as perfect mothers for the new race of Americans.”
“It was his explicitness about male-female sex that shocked his early readers. Only a few homosexuals in England and some readers in Germany caught what is now obvious to any reader who can admit what he sees on the page. The 2nd and 3rd sections of Song of Myself are homosexual