Fascism and Democracy in the Human Mind

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-05-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Nebraska Pr

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What might you have done if you had been caught up in the Holocaust? In My Lai? In Rwanda? Confronted with acts of violence and evil on scales grand and small, we ask ourselves, baffled, how such horrors can happen--how human beings seemingly like ourselves can commit such atrocities. The answer, I. W. Charny suggests in this important new work, may be found in each one of us, in the different and distinct ways in which we organize our minds. An internationally recognized scholar of the psychology of violence, Charny defines two paradigms of mental organization, the democratic and the fascist, and shows how these systems can determine behavior in intimate relationships, social situations, and events of global significance. With its novel conception of mental health and illness, this book develops new directions for diagnosis and treatment of emotional disorders that are played out in everyday acts of violence against ourselves and others.Fascism and Democracy in the Human Mindalso offers much-needed insight into the sources and workings of terrorism and genocide. A sane, radical statement about the guiding principles underlying acts of violence and evil, this book sounds a passionate call for the democratic way of thinking, which recognizes complexity, embraces responsibility, and affirms life.

Author Biography

I. W. Charny is the editor in chief of the Encyclopedia of Genocide and the executive director of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide in Jerusalem. A practicing clinical psychologist and family therapist, he is a professor of psychology and family therapy at Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Table of Contents

1 - What is the Original 'Mind Software' We Humans Receive at the 'Factory'? We Start from a Weakminded, Rigid, and in Effect Fascist Mind Position and then Need to Grow Up, but Do We?; 2 - The Choice between Fascist Mind and Democratic Mind: What Chance do We have of Changing our "fascist minds" to "democratic minds"?; 3 - The Fascist Believer: Totality, Overcertainty, and Suppression of Information; 4 - The Fascist Slave: Obedience, Conformity, and Intolerance of Dissent; 5 - The Fascist Fist: Superiority, Excessive Power, and Violence Against Self and Others; 6 - The Fascist Denier: 'I Never Did Any Harm' - Denials of Doing Harm to Oneself or To Others; 7 - Democratic mind as the Healthy Alternative To fascist mind: The Joy of Life Process and Opportunity; 8 - Psychotherapy as Anti-Fascism and Training for Democracy: The Psychotherapy Room as a Dedicated Experience in Democracy; 9 - Discovering Applications of "democratic minds in Everyday Life: How to Use our Minds Safely, Wholesomely and Creatively; 10 - A Unified Theory of "democratic minds in the Self, Family and Society: A Vision of More Decent Human Beings who do Less Harm to Themselves and Others; ClosingThe Care and Maintenance of the Bridge between Mind and Society: The Privilege and Responsibility of Working to Achieve Democratic Minds and Societies

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