Here are the pictures:
Here are the quotes:
-from What the British Can Do To End Child Abuse (2006) by Lloyd deMause; pp. 13-16 [ADDITIONAL PROGRAMS THAT CAN HELP ELIMINATE CHILD ABUSE]: There are three different programs beyond anti-hitting laws and financial aid that have been shown to drastically reduce child abuse. All have been regularly reported upon in my Journal of Psychohistory (...) The first is what has been called Community Parenting Centers, like the one started 23 years ago in Boulder, Colorado. Their mission is "to relieve isolation, reduce the stress of parenting and prevent child abuse and neglect by providing outreach and a place where families can receive support, education and develop a sense of community." Unlike the British Sure Start centers -- which are more day care oriented and aim mainly at helping poor parents find child care while they work -- Community Parenting Centers (a) give lectures by more experienced parents for new parents, (b) have play groups for children with puppet shows that demonstrate parent-child interactions, (c) give post-partum depression assistance, (d) provide help for immigrants and unmarried mothers, (e) give talks on how to set limits for toddlers, and (f) even have free home visits to new mothers by volunteers who give pediatric and psychological help (home visits have been found to cut child abuse in half). The centers are free to all and quite inexpensive to run, especially since it has been shown that for every dollar invested in better parenting by the Center the state saves over a hundred dollars in later costs of social services, hospital costs and jails. The reduction of child abuse in Boulder and in other centers, such as the Parent Child Center Network in Vermont and the Hawaii Healthy Start Program, has been substantial.
A second child support program is the Home Visiting Programs run in Boulder and several other cities that visit weekly in their homes mothers who have shown by their fears of handling their newborn or by post-partum depression that they are potentially neglectful or abusive and need more help in parenting. Home Visiting is preventive, not intrusive; it is not at all the same as social workers visiting homes to see if they need to remove the children to protect them. It involves paraprofessionals who can visit hundreds of families and who can give person-to-person help in working through emotional problems. In Colorado, the cost of operating both the Community Parenting Centers and Home Visiting Program can be covered by a 0.1% "Children's Sales Tax," surely a tiny amount when one recognizes that the costs to society of a career criminal or drug user is over a million dollars for each youth who has been abused as a child.
A third effective program for parenting was recently started in New York City by Margaret R. Kind, M.D., a psychiatrist, who taught a course on parenting in the city school system to 30 high school classes. It is, of course, revealing of our priorities that although parenting is one of the most important jobs in every nation in the world, there has until now never been as far as I am aware any actual courses teaching it in any school. Students taking Kind's course learn about children's needs for love, attachment, commitment, admiration, toleration and empathy, and learn how to create discipline without distress-causing punishment, discomfort or physical pain. Students are surprised to learn how important early relationships are to the infant, and go through the parenting stages with an excellent textbook, The Six Stages of Parenthood. They are frequently surprised by how much time caring for an infant takes, and begin during their teens to plan their own lives so they can be available to the child as they grow up. What is most promising is how enthusiastic the students are about taking the course. I myself read a large stack of the final comments about the course, and they not only praised how much they learned -- both what to do and what not to do -- even if it was different from what their parents did, but they wrote things like, "Now I can be a successful parent! I was not sure before that I could" and "I think more people should have the opportunity to take a course like this, and avoid a lot of mistakes...mistakes that are a matter of life and death." As Kind puts it, "The students loved the course, and they, themselves, suggested that it be mandated to be taught to all high school students! Their enthusiasm was remarkable, well expressed, and gratifying."
- pp. 18-20 [SURE START ISN'T ENOUGH]: Indeed, the end of child abuse could eventually mean the end of much of the criminal system. As James Gilligan, a prison psychiatrist who has spent his life interviewing criminals, says in his findings:
In the course of my work with the most violent men in maximum-security settings, not a day goes by that I do not hear reports of how these men were victimized during childhood. Physical violence, neglect, abandonment, rejection, sexual exploitation, and violation occurred on a scale so extreme, so bizarre, and so frequent that one cannot fail to see that the men who occupy the extreme end of the continuum of violent behavior in adulthood occupied an extreme end of the continuum of violent child abuse earlier in life. As children, these men were shot, axed, scalded, beaten, strangled, tortured, drugged, starved, suffocated, set on fire, thrown out of windows, raped, or prostituted by mothers who were their pimps.
Obviously the costs of improving child care are small compared to the enormous costs of the crimes produced by creating time bombs rather than useful citizens. Even the costs of the mental health system are a result of child abuse. As Brett Kahr found when he began to work in the back wards of a British psychiatric hospital with people diagnosed as "schizophrenics,"
I soon discovered that many of my patients had experienced profound death threats and attempts on their lives in childhood...One of my patients first entered a psychiatric hospital at the age of eighteen because his mother kept chasing him around the family home wielding a carving knife and shouting, 'I will kill him. I will kill him.'"
Brett's insights have recently been confirmed by major studies showing that the overwhelming majority of schizophrenics and other serious psychiatric patients were horribly abused as children and that their hallucinations were simply flashbacks to dissociated early abusive events. Saving the costs of maintaining psychiatric hospitals and the additional costs of other emotional disorders -- such as depression, delinquency and other anti-social behavior -- adds to the results that can be expected as the programs I have suggested become implemented.
Beyond all these internal costs, the trillions of pounds spent on unnecessary wars are, according to the findings of psychohistory, outcomes of abusive childrearing. When parents abuse their children -- especially their boys -- they grow up insecure and fearful of again being dominated, and re-enact their childhood fears by turning their nations into "Killer Motherlands" they can fuse with and then finding "Bad Boy enemies" in other countries to punish for their own forbidden needs. Those nations -- like Sweden -- who reduce child abuse to negligible quantities simply do not need wars to restore their "anxious masculinities." The cost savings from the ending of war are obvious, and far, far more than the costs of reducing child abuse.
- from The History of Childhood (Edited by Lloyd deMause); pp. 1-2 [Chapter 1: The Evolution of Childhood by Lloyd deMause]: The history of childhood is a nightmare from which we have only recently begun to awaken. The further back in history one goes, the lower the level of child care, and the more likely children are to be killed, abandoned, beaten, terrorized, and sexually abused. It is our task here to see how much of this childhood history can be recaptured from the evidence that remains to us.
That this pattern has not previously been noticed by historians is because serious history has long been considered a record of public not private events. Historians have concentrated so much on the noisy sandbox of history, with its fantastic castles and magnificent battles, that they have generally ignored what is going on in the homes around the playground. And where historians usually look to the sandbox battles of yesterday for the causes of those today, we instead ask how each generation of parents and children creates those issues which are later acted out in the arena of public life.
At first glance, this lack of interest in the lives of children seems odd. Historians have been traditionally committed to explaining continuity and change over time, and ever since Plato it has been known that childhood is a key to this understanding. The importance of parent-child relations for social change was hardly discovered by Freud; St. Augustine's cry, "Give me other mothers and I will give you another world," has been echoed by major thinkers for fifteen centuries without affecting historical writing.
- from The New Psychohistory  (Lloyd deMause, Editor); pp. 9-10 [Chapter 1 - The Independence of Psychohistory by Lloyd deMause]: This matter of psychohistory "ignoring" other fields when it specializes is a matter of some importance, since it is so often repeated by historians when criticizing psychohistorical works. In my own work, for instance, I have been accused of being ignorant of economics (although I am the founder and Chairman of the Board of a company which publishes seven professional economic newsletters), of being ignorant of sociology (although I am trained in sociology and was C. Wright Mills' research assistant...), of being unable to use statistics (although I earned my living as a professional statistician for five years) and of ignoring political factors (although all my graduate training was in political science). What seems not to have occurred to the critics of psychohistory is that we might choose to focus on the historical evolution of the psyche because only thereby can we reach the unsolved problems of precisely these same fields of politics, economics and sociology, fields which are shot through with unproven psychological assumptions and which have failed to become reliable sciences precisely because of the unsolved psychohistorical problems within them. Professionals in each of these fields recognize this quite well, and even admit it to each other in their journals -- it is only historians, ignorant of the shaky psychological underpinnings of the fields from which they uncritically borrow, who imagine there can be "economic, political, and social factors" which are somehow apart from "psychological" factors in history. As one instance, it is probably true that my own work on the evolution of childhood was at least partly a response to problems encountered in the theory of economic development, as set forth in such books as Everett E. Hagen's On the Theory of Social Change: How Economic Growth Begins, where the crucial link needed to produce a take-off in economic development is shown to be just the kind of personality which I was later able to trace in the history of childhood as the result of the "intrusive mode" of parenting. Just as surely is the study of class intimately tied up with evolving psychohistorical patterns of dominance and submission, and the study of power dependent upon an understanding of group-fantasy needs and defenses. The notion that psychohistory somehow "ignores" economics, sociology or political science is possibly the most ignorant charge that could be leveled against it.
- from The History of Childhood  (Lloyd deMause, Editor); pp. 2-3 [Chapter 1 - The Evolution of Childhood by Lloyd deMause]: Since the repetition compulsion, by definition, cannot explain historical change, every attempt by Freud, Roheim, Kardiner, and others to develop a theory of change ultimately ended in a sterile chicken-or-egg dispute about whether child-rearing depends on cultural traits or the other way around. That child-rearing practices are the basis for adult personality was proven again and again. Where they originated stumped every psychoanalyst who raised the question.
In a paper given in 1968 before the Association for Applied Psychoanalysis, I outlined an evolutionary theory of historical change in parent-child relations, and proposed that since historians had not as yet begun the job of writing childhood history, the Association should sponsor a team of historians who would dig back into the sources to uncover the major stages of child-rearing in the West since antiquity. This book is the outcome of that project.
The "psychogenic theory of history" outlined in my project proposal began with a comprehensive theory of historical change. It posited that the central force for change in history is neither technology nor economics, but the "psychogenic" changes in personality occurring because of successive generations of parent-child interactions. This theory involved several hypotheses, each subject to proof or disproof by empirical historical evidence:
1. That the evolution of parent-child relations constitutes an independent source of historical change. The origin of this evolution lies in the ability of successive generations of parents to regress to the psychic age of their children and work through the anxieties of that age in a better manner the second time they encounter them than they did during their own childhood. The process is similar to that of psychoanalysis, which also involves regression and a second chance to face childhood anxieties.
2. That this "generational pressure" for psychic change is not only spontaneous, originating in the adult's need to regress and in the child's striving for relationship, but also occurs independent of social and technological change. It therefore can be found even in periods of social and technological stagnation.
3. That the history of childhood is a series of closer approaches between adult and child, with each closing of psychic distance producing fresh anxiety. The reduction of this adult anxiety is the main source of the child-rearing practices of each age.
4. That the obverse of the hypothesis that history involves a general improvement in child care is that the further back one goes in history, the less effective parents are in meeting the developing needs of the child. This would indicate, for instance, that if today in America there are less than a million abused children, there would be a point back in history where most children were what we would now consider abused.
5. That because psychic structure must always be passed from generation to generation through the narrow funnel of childhood, a society's child-rearing practices are not just one item in a list of cultural traits. They are the very condition for the transmission and development of all other cultural elements, and place definite limits on what can be achieved in all other spheres of history. Specific childhood experiences must occur to sustain specific cultural traits, and once these experiences no longer occur the trait disappears.
- from The New Psychohistory  (Lloyd deMause, Editor); pp. 16-21 [Chapter 1 - The Independence of Psychohistory by Lloyd deMause]: Needless to say, I was still extremely reluctant to accept the reality of such an unlikely, even bizarre group-fantasy as "war as birth." Yet even a provisional emotional acceptance of the basic birth thesis made all the difference in the world to how I proceeded with my research. For one thing, only now could I begin to use my knowledge of the psychoanalytic literature on common birth images in dreams, in which suffocation and claustrophobia always represent being trapped in the birth canal, facts which completely eluded me during the prior year while trying to make sense of the historical material. I had noticed, of course, that leaders said they felt "small and helpless" during the slide towards war, but had thoroughly blocked out the importance of the imagery. That there was a life-and-death struggle going on for "some breathing space" was apparent -- as Bethmann-Hollweg told the Reichstag in announcing war on August 4, 1914: "He who is menaced as we are and is fighting for his highest possession can only consider how he is to hack his way through." But there was also present all the imagery of birth-dreams familiar to psychoanalysts--choking, drowning, hanging, suffocating, being crushed in rooms or tunnels. In psychoanalysis, these images represent the patient's attempt to repeat and by repeating to master the fearful pressure of labor contractions and the gasping for air after birth. This reliving indicates that birth traumata are still very much alive in most adults, especially those whose regressive need to re-emerge with the mother has been kept alive by inadequate parenting. Not only have psychoanalysts traditionally found these images in dreams, but more recently Arthur Janov has discovered that patients in Primal therapy regularly have "birth Primals" in which they re-experience their own births in great detail, and with enormous psychological and physical changes taking place after these re-livings.
In somehow trying to make sense out of all these strands of thought, I noticed that it didn't seem as though reality--physical reality--was forcing leaders to feel like strangled babies. Henry Kissinger, and the Kaiser were actually no more in danger of war when they began voicing feelings of choking in a birth canal than they had been a year earlier when they did not voice such feelings. What was actually "strangling" the American economy was more the effects of the 1.5 trillion dollars spent on war goods in the previous two decades than the current oil situation, and the notion that little Serbia was actually able to "strangle" central Europe was wholly fantastic. In fact, when I checked my material I found that nations who were actually surrounded, like Serbia herself, or Poland in 1939, did not voice such images, while countries which do say they feel encircled when going to war, like Germany in 1939, do not then say so when the war goes against them and they in fact become encircled (for instance there is not a single birth image in ******'s Secret Conversations, running from July 1941 to November 1944). It is group-reality, a psychic reality, not material reality, which for reasons yet unknown causes nations to pour into their leaders feelings of being strangled in a birth canal, and which causes these leaders to then feel that only the extreme solution of going to war and hacking their way through offers the possibility of relief.
It was now not long before I became aware that wars proceed in the same sequence as birth. They develop out of a condition resembling pregnancy, the air heavy with feelings of great expectancy, what William Yancey, head of the Alabama delegation to the secessionist Democratic Convention in 1860, before a hushed convention, referred to as "a dormant volcano" which threatened to become "a great heaving volcano." Soon it seems that "every day is pregnant with some new event." The nation's leaders find themselves in what Kaiser Wilhelm termed "the nervous tension in the grip of which Europe has found itself during the last two years," or what Admiral Shimada in a pre-Pearl Harbor meeting described as a "tight, tense, and trapped feeling" in the air. The nation soon found that it had to "relieve herself of the inexorable pressure to which she has been subjected ... to extricate herself from the desperate position in which she was entangled . . . to at least gain a breathing spell." The nation seems to be gripped, as Congressman Brinton said in 1917, in what felt like an "invisible energy-field." "There is something in the air, gentlemen," he told his fellow Congressmen, "something stronger than you and I can realize or resist, that seems to be picking us up bodily and literally forcing us to vote for this declaration of war..." Shortly thereafter, diplomatic relations are "ruptured," "the past placed its hand on the shoulder of the present and thrust it into the dark future" and the "descent into the abyss" begins as the nation starts its "final plunge over the brink."
When war is finally decided upon, the feeling is inevitably one of enormous relief. When Germany declared war on France in 1914, it came, said the Crown Prince, as a welcome end to the ever-increasing tension, an end to the nightmare of encirclement. "It is a joy to be alive," rejoiced a German paper the same day; Germany was "exulting with happiness." And in America, half a century earlier, when Fort Sumter fell, both North and South experienced the same relief that "something unendurable had ended." Crowds went wild with laughter, waving banners, being swept up in the excitement. "The heather is on fire. I never before knew what a popular excitement can be," wrote a Boston merchant, watching the jubilant crowds, and the London Times's correspondent described the same thing in the South -- "flushed faces, wild eyes, screaming mouths" outshouting the bands playing "Dixie."
If the announcement of war was equivalent to the actual moment of birth, I wondered to myself how far this concreteness of detail could be carried. For instance, would it be too far-fetched to imagine that one might find in the historical material evidence of the actual explosive first gasp for breath of the newborn, usually accompanied by a slap on the back. I did not have to look far for confirmation of my hunch. Searching my notes once again for the actual feelings expressed by those present at the precise moment that war had been declared, I discovered several clear instances where an actual birth explosion had been hallucinated. For instance, when Lincoln issued his proclamation calling for troops to defend the Union, an action recognized by all as the beginning of the Civil War, he retired to his room alone, "and a feeling came over him as if he were utterly deserted and helpless...he suddenly heard a sound like the boom of a cannon... The White House attendants, whom he interrogated, had heard nothing... He met a few persons on the way [outside], some of whom he asked whether they had not heard something like the boom of a cannon. Nobody had heard anything, and so he supposed it must have been a freak of his imagination." Similarly, when Chamberlain stood before the British Cabinet in 1939 and announced: "Right, gentlemen, this means war," one of those present remembered: "Hardly had he said it, when there was the most enormous clap of thunder and the whole Cabinet Room was lit up by a blinding flash of lightning. It was the most deafening thunder-clap I've heard in my life. It really shook the building." The birth-explosion seemed to take place only after the emotional recognition that the birth crisis was terminated--it did not take place, for instance, upon the first actual shooting, at the siege of Fort Sumter. In fact, the birth-explosion could be hallucinated even if the message that war had started was in error. When ****** in 1938 was handed the message that Czech forces were mobilizing, and it looked as though the long-avoided European war would begin, Paul Schmidt, his interpreter said it seemed as though a "big drum-bang" had sounded in the dead silence of those few minutes. This birth-explosion was so necessary, in fact, that leaders, including both Woodrow Wilson and F.D.R., always carefully delayed bringing their countries into wars until they could feel the exaltation (and exhalation) of the war-cry of birth. As Wilson put it, when one of his Cabinet told him in early 1917 that America would follow him if he led them to war:
Why that is not what I am waiting for; that is not enough. If they cannot go
in with a whoop, there is no use of their going in at all.
The more I examined the words of leaders the more I recognized that all of them seemed to realize that war was a group-fantasy of birth against which one struggled almost in vain. During the Cuban missile crisis, for example, it was only after Khrushchev wrote to Kennedy pleading that the two nations not "come to a clash, like blind moles" battling to death in a tunnel that war between them could be averted. Even more explicit is the code-word used by Japanese ambassador Kurusu when he phoned Tokyo to signal that negotiations had broken down with Roosevelt and that it was all right to go ahead with the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Forced to invent a voice code on the spot which Tokyo would recognize as meaning that war should begin, Kurusu announced that the "birth of a child" was imminent and asked how things were in Japan. "Does it seem as if a child might be born?" "Yes," came the reply, "the birth of the child seems imminent." The only problem was that American intelligence, listening in, spontaneously recognized the meaning of the war-as-birth code.
The imagery of war as birth seemed to reach back to earliest times. Numa erected a bronze temple to Janus, the Roman god of doorways and archways, and whenever Rome went to war the huge double doors were opened, a common dream-image of birth. Thereafter, whenever a war began, nations borrowed the Roman imagery and declared, as did the Chicago Tribune the day Lincoln called for troops: "The gates of Janus are open; the storm is on us." Certainly no American war has seemed to lack birth-imagery, beginning with the American Revolution, filled with images of birth and separation from the mother-country and what Samuel Adams termed the fight for "the child Independence...now struggling for birth" right down to the Vietnam war, which began as "a swampy hole you got sucked into," soon turned into a "bottomless pit" and a "tar baby" you couldn't let go of, and ended with a baby airlift.
While some of the symbolism of war is quite open and transparent--it hardly needs a psychoanalyst to interpret the message General Groves cabled to President Truman to report that the first A-bomb was successful ("The baby was born") or to see the imagery of the Hiroshima bomb being called "Little Boy" and the plane from whose belly it dropped being named after the pilot's mother -- still some of the symbolism of war only becomes intelligible when one becomes familiar with psychoanalytic clinical research into dreams of birth. Although I was familiar with much of this literature, from Rank's essay on the birth-trauma to Janov's extensive work on the re-experiencing of birth during primal therapy, I discovered a whole new range of images once I had sensitized myself by reading more extensively in the research on birth dreams. For instance, I discovered a little-known book written 25 years ago by the psychoanalyst Nandor Fodor entitled The Search for the Beloved: A Clinical Investigation of the Trauma of Birth and Pre-Natal Conditioning, a book which was ignored at the time it was published only because it was so far in advance of its time. It includes, for example, a complete description of the violence of "normal" birth methods that anticipates at every point that of Frederick Leboyer, plus a proposal for psychotherapy to heal the birth trauma that spells out in advance much of the work of Arthur Janov.
One of the birth symbols that Fodor calls attention to is the image--or rather more often the nightmare--of fire. According to both Leboyer and Fodor, the neonate's skin is extremely sensitive, and feels as though it is burning up both during the long hours of labor and immediately after birth, especially when the room is colder than 98 degrees Fahrenheit or when the baby is wrapped in rough clothes. Once this is realized, the historical image of war as a "ravaging fire" is more easily comprehended. Moreover, just as in dreams birth can be symbolized by being caught in a burning house, much of warfare involved simply setting fire to people and things, even when it costs more to do so than the benefit involved, as in the case of the "strategic bombing" of Europe in World War II. War and burning seem so intimately connected that troops are driven to set fire to villages even when the latter belong to those who are supposedly allies, as in Vietnam. The impulse to set people and places afire seemingly transcends any other objective in war.
Similarly, Fodor's book contains many references to another dream image for birth--falling or jumping out of towers. This is, of course, a repetition of the moment of birth itself, which involves falling upside down and activates the baby's instinctual fear of falling and reflexive hand-grasping. Only if one keeps one's "inner ear" tuned for this imagery does it become obvious that leaders at crucial moments use the "jumping out of towers" theme to convey war-as-birth messages. For instance, just as Japan was deciding to go to war with America, its leaders were presented with a voluminous report containing well-documented evidence that Japan was outnumbered by America in every area of war potential and actuality by at least 10 to 1 and therefore couldn't possibly win. Since they were in the group-process stage that made the "slide to war" inexorable, Tojo looked at this overwhelming proof that Japan couldn't win the war and announced: "There are times when we must have the courage to do extraordinary things--like jumping, with eyes closed, off the veranda of the Kiyomizu Temple!" Similarly, the French Foreign Minister, at the time of the Munich Agreement, referred to war as "jumping from the Eiffel Tower."
- from The History of Childhood  (Lloyd deMause, Editor); pp. 4-5 [Chapter 1 - The Evolution of Childhood by Lloyd deMause (Previous Works on Children in History)]: Although I think this book is the first to examine seriously the history of childhood in the West, historians have undeniably been writing about children in past ages for some time. Even so, I think that the study of the history of childhood is just beginning, since most of these works so badly distort the facts of childhood in the periods they cover. Official biographers are the worst offenders; childhood is generally idealized, and very few biographers give any useful information about the subject's earliest years. The historical sociologists manage to turn out theories explaining changes in childhood without ever bothering to examine a single family, past or present. The literary historians, mistaking books for life, construct a fictional picture of childhood, as though one could know what really happened in the nineteenth-century American home by reading Tom Sawyer.
But it is the social historian, whose job it is to dig out the reality of social conditions in the past, who defends himself most vigorously against the facts he turns up. When one social historian finds widespread infanticide, he declares it "admirable and humane." When another describes mothers who regularly beat their infants with sticks while still in the cradle, she comments, without a shred of evidence, that "if her discipline was stern, it was even and just and leavened with kindness." When a third finds mothers who dunk their infants into ice water each morning to "strengthen" them, and the children die from the practice, she says that "they were not intentionally cruel," but simply "had read Rousseau and Locke." No practice in the past seems anything but benign to the social historian. When Laslett finds parents regularly sending their children, at age seven, to other homes as servants, while taking in other children to serve them, he says it was actually kindness, for it "shows that parents may have been unwilling to submit children of their own to the discipline of work at home." After admitting that severe whipping of young children with various instruments "at school and at home seems to have been as common in the seventeenth century as it was later," William Sloan feels compelled to add that "children, then as later, sometimes deserved whipping." [...] Masses of evidence are hidden, distorted, softened, or ignored. The child's early years are played down, formal educational content is endlessly examined, and emotional content is avoided by stressing child legislation and avoiding the home. And if the nature of the author's book is such that the ubiquity of unpleasant facts cannot be ignored, the theory is invented that "good parents leave no traces in the records." When, for instance, Alan Valentine examines 600 years of letters from fathers to sons, and of 126 fathers is unable to find one who isn't insensitive, moralistic, and thoroughly self-centered, he concludes: "Doubtless an infinite number of fathers have written to their sons letters that would warm and lift our hearts, if we only could find them. The happiest fathers leave no history, and it is the men who are not at their best with their children who are likely to write the heart-rending letters that survive." Likewise, Anna Burr, covering 250 autobiographies, notes there are no happy memories of childhood, but carefully avoids drawing any conclusions.
- from What the British Can Do To End Child Abuse  by Lloyd deMause; pp. 1-3: That Donald Winnicott sometimes treated abused children is evident from his saying that they often come to him "clinging to mother in dread of the white-coated doctor who will surely be a monster who eats children" and by his admitting that children's fears were often the result of what he termed "the mother's unconscious (repressed) hate of the child." Yet, since he mainly saw parents and children in his office, where they tended not to openly abuse their children, and since he relied on his child abuse figures on grossly understated British official statistics that claimed only a tiny percentage of children were abused, Winnicott regularly stated that "most babies get good-enough care," and "the majority of babies have their basic needs met." In fact, Winnicott is most often remembered for coining the "good-enough mother" concept -- even though he once surprised everyone by estimating that only half of British children had mothers who gave them sufficient love to become emotionally mature enough to run a democracy.
The "good-enough mother" phrase was foremost in my mind when, five decades ago, I began intense historical and sociological research for my book The History of Childhood. I was forced to conclude that, as the opening words of my book put it,
The history of childhood is a nightmare from which we have only recently
begun to awaken. The further back in history one goes, the lower the level of
child care, and the more likely children are to be killed, abandoned, beaten,
terrorized and sexually abused.
I have in the past four decades been so impressed with the overwhelming evidence for this conclusion that I have offered a prize for anyone who could find evidence of even one mother prior to the 18th century anywhere in the world who could be called a "good-enough mother" -- the definition for which being a mother who would not today be thrown in jail for child abuse. No one has yet claimed the prize.
In the three decades since my first book on the history of childhood appeared, over a hundred articles and books by myself and fellow psychohistorians have been published -- most of them articles in my Journal of Psychohistory -- giving overwhelming evidence of the truth of this astonishing view of how common child abuse has been throughout history. According to Judith Issroff's new book on Winnicott and Bowlby, it was only after my work appeared that British psychoanalysts were able to "recognize how prevalent the incidence of actual abuse, neglect and torture" has been in the U.K. The denial of the facts about British child abuse has been so pervasive that John Bowlby once had to stand up at a psychoanalytic meeting and insist to the audience, "But there is such a thing as a bad mother!"
- p. 7: The rates of physical child abuse in the U.K. are about the same as those of the U.S., but far higher than the rates of most other West European nations. In the past 25 years, 16 European nations have outlawed the corporal punishment of children, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe has recently called upon all the other European nations to make Europe "a corporal punishment-free zone for children." Hungary, the Netherlands, the Slovak Republic and Slovenia are about to join the abolitionist states, and others are considering doing so.
The results of outlawing the hitting of children are dramatic. In Sweden, the first country to abolish corporal punishment of children by everyone, public support for hitting children--even in its mildest forms--has been reduced from 53% to only 11%. In addition, only 6% of younger Swedes today say they support corporal punishment. More importantly, practice as well as attitude has changed, with only 3% of school children today reporting they had been slapped by their parents, and only one child in 25 years having been killed by their parent. The results of this dramatic decrease in hitting have been spectacular. The number of children needing social work care has decreased by 26%, the number of youth convicted of theft declined by 21%, the rates of alcohol and drug abuse by youths have declined dramatically, and the rate of youth suicide has declined.
pp. 11-13: After WWII ended, even though economic recovery made family life difficult in Central Europe, by 1960 German and Austrian mothers began to be given help by the state in their childrearing tasks, and the traditional authoritarian model of the family that had been going on for centuries changed rapidly. In 1964, for instance, 80 percent of German and Austrian parents admitted to beating their children, but for the past decade there has been a law against hitting children which has improved childrearing so much that careful personality studies today show both Germans and Austrians are now less abusive toward children and less authoritarian in personality than British and Americans. Mothers are today given paid leave for up to three years when they have their children, and now feel able to show love and support for the independence of their growing children that would have shocked their grandparents. This and other state-supported help to parents has led to a less violent, more humane society, one that is rarely anti-Semitic and to a great extent is beyond the kind of violent nationalism that led to WWII. After all, studies of the effect of abusive childrearing since Adorno's Authoritarian Personality studies have shown how harsh childrearing leads to fearful, violent adults who repeat their early abuse in politics and wars -- people who Winnicott termed "hidden anti-socials," who identify with violent authority because they have no inner selves. The recent studies of Milburn at the University of Massachusetts show individuals who reported high levels of childhood punishment held far more punitive political attitudes, including a more consistent use of military force to settle disputes. It is not surprising, therefore, that the Austrians I met regularly on my speaking tour considered themselves not as nationalist Austria-first political actors but as Europeans -- even just as humans -- and were far more peaceful politically than most people in my own country.
- from The New Psychohistory (Lloyd deMause, Editor); pp. 7-9 [Chapter 1 - The Independence of Psychohistory by Lloyd deMause]: Ever since 1942 when the philosopher Carl Hempel published his essay "The Function of General Laws in History," it has been recognized by most philosophers of history that history cannot be a science in any strict sense of the term and that history can never regard it as part of its task to establish laws in the Hempelian sense. Written history may, in the course of its narrative, use some of the laws established by the various sciences, but its own task remains that of relating the essential sequence of historical action and, qua history, to tell what happened, not why.
Psychohistory, it seems to me, is on the contrary specifically concerned with establishing laws and discovering causes in precisely the Hempelian manner. The relationship between history and psychohistory is parallel to the relationship between astrology and astronomy, or if that seems too pejorative, between geology and physics. Astrology and geology are disciplines seeking sequential orders in the sky and the earth, while astronomy and physics are not narrative at all, but are sciences attempting to establish laws in their own respective areas. Psychohistory, as the science of historical motivation, may concentrate on the same historical events that written history covers, but its purpose is never to tell what happened one day after another. When the first astronomers came along and found astrologers describing the positions of the stars day by day and trying to explain all the relationships between them, they created a revolution by saying, "Forget about the sequence of the skies. What interests us qua scientists is this one dot of light and whether it goes in a circle or an ellipse--and why. In order to find this out, we will have to drop the narrative task of astrology."
What is more, science never did pick up this task of narration--because it couldn't. Astronomy, even if it finally discovers all the laws of the universe, will still not narrate the sequences of skies, any more than psychohistory will ever narrate the events of this or that period. Psychohistory, as a science, will always be problem-centered, while history will always remain period-centered. They are simply two different tasks.
It does not, of course, follow that psychohistory simply uses the facts historians have narrated up to now in order to construct laws of historical motivation. Like astronomy and physics, psychohistory finds it necessary to conduct its own search for material peculiar to its own interests in both past and present society. Whole great chunks of written history are of little value to the psychohistorian, while other vast areas which have been much neglected by historians--childhood history, content analysis of historical imagery, and so on--suddenly expand from the periphery to the center of the psychohistorian's conceptual world, simply because his or her own new questions require material nowhere to be found in history books.
Now I am well aware that in claiming the field of historical motivation exclusive for the psychohistorian I immediately run up against the oft-repeated claim by historians that they work with motivations all the time, so there is nothing new in that. I had heard this claim so often in the two decades since I first studied the philosophy of history that I was finally moved to measure exactly how often historians actually do examine motivations in their works. I therefore kept a tally-sheet as I read 100 history books of varying kinds and recorded exactly how many sentences were devoted to any kind of motivational analysis whatsoever--not just psychoanalytic, but any level of attention at all. In no case did this motivational content reach as much as 1% of the book -- so the field seemed to be ours by default. What wasn't pure narrative of one event after another turned out to be mainly the recitation of as many economic facts as possible in the hopes that their mere conjunction with the historical narrative would be mistaken for explanation.
Now anyone who has read any portion of the over 1,300 books and articles contained in the "Bibliography of Psychohistory" will soon realize that psychohistory has reversed this 1-to-99 ratio, so that the bulk of psychohistorical writing is devoted to an intense concentration on motivational analysis while the physical events of history are necessarily given quite sketchy background treatment. There is, for instance, only one page at the beginning of Runciman's three-volume History of the Crusades describing how the participants decided to begin four hundred years of wars, and then several thousand pages devoted to the routes, battles and other events which make up the "history" of the Crusades. A psychohistorian would assume the history, and spend his decades of research and thousands of pages in the most fascinating question for psychohistory -- why so many set off on such a strange task as relic-saving. That the historian, when reviewing such a psychohistory, would accuse it of "ignoring" the full history of the Crusades should bother the psychohistorian as little as the accusation by the astrologer that Galileo "ignored" all the other stars in describing the path of one mere planet. It wasn't his task, and narrative history isn't ours.
- pp. 310-313 [Chapter 10 - Psychohistory and Psychotherapy by Lloyd deMause]: What we found in examining diaries, letters, autobiographies, pediatric and pedagogical literature back to antiquity was that good parenting appears to be something only historically achieved, and that the further one goes back into the past the more likely one would be to find children killed, abandoned, beaten, terrorized and sexually abused by adults. Indeed, it soon appeared likely that a good mother, one who was reasonably devoted to her child and more or less able to empathize with and fulfill its needs, was nowhere to be found prior to modern times. In the book which resulted from the project, entitled The History of Childhood, I wrote that it seemed to me that childhood was one long nightmare from which we have only gradually and only recently begun to awaken.
Now it is no secret to you as psychiatrists that childhood in many homes even today remains a nightmare, but what is most fascinating is that each type of family with which you are familiar from your practice was once the predominant type of family in the past. When you arrange parenting modes on a scale of decreasing health, from empathic down to the most destructive child-battering parents, you have also listed historical modes of child care reaching back into the past. It is as though today's child abuser were a sort of "evolutionary arrest," a psychological fossil, stuck in a personality mode from a previous historical epoch when everyone used to batter children.
Parents in antiquity, for instance, were found to have murdered their newborn children, regardless of economic situation, and in many other ways to have transmitted powerful death wishes to their children. Only when the strength of the infanticidal mode is recognized does it become understandable why early religions focused so exclusively on sacrificial themes. Early Christianity, for example, directly acted out the killing of a Son under orders of his Father. Believers were "buried with Christ" and then resurrected as first a repetition and then a denial of infanticide, were baptised as a repetition of the washing of those newborn babies who were going to be allowed to live, and anticipated a Last Judgment which was as real to them as the First Judgment which every newborn experienced, laying on the ground and waiting for the father to lift it up into life or to cast it into Hell (which the Jews named Gehenna, after the Valley of Hinnom, where children were sacrificed to Moloch). By joining in Christ's death, believers avoided being killed by the Father, as they in their childhood watched their real-life siblings being killed by their fathers after being born, joining the millions of infants who filled the rivers and latrines of antiquity and medieval times.
During the medieval period, the infanticidal wishes of parents toward their legitimate offspring decreased, and the emotional reality of childhood began to evolve more around the fear of abandonment, either emotional or actual, to wet-nurse, monastery, nunnery or foster family. As in badly abandoned and abused children today, who have never had a stable relationship and who from their earliest years have been forced to take care of themselves, the average medieval child grew up to be a psychopathic personality, unable to develop mature attachments, developing instead personal dominance-submission patterns known to historians as feudalism. The feudal bond of personal loyalty, an attempt to deny the possibility of abandonment, combined with the typical psychopathic need for violence, gives medieval Europe its restless, marauding character, centering on the psychopath's world view of everything as consisting solely of exploiting or being exploited.
The Renaissance and early modern period was one of enormous ambivalence toward children, the child being more highly cathected than previously, but also, because emotionally closer, more dangerous, a container for parental projections, a devil or animal which had to be beaten into human shape, molded at every step, and generally made to feel that he or she was essentially bad inside. The result, again like contemporary highly ambivalent families, was a manic-depressive personality, continuously guilty and often self-destructive, under the attack of a severely rejecting superego. The paradigmatic depressive character, Hamlet, provided the characteristic list of depressive symptoms; but what is most interesting is his feeling that his melancholy is an achievement, an advance on the psychopathic medieval personality. And, of course, he is right -- in the sense that being loved and hated by ambivalent parents is indeed a step higher than being abandoned by unloving and uncaring parents, even today.
The eighteenth century saw a new kind of parent, closer than ever before to the child, but over-controlling and intrusive to a degree only rarely seen in today's families. The child, it is true, was no longer swaddled, nor was it usually sent out to a wet-nurse, but was instead made an active part of the mother's ongoing interpsychic defense system. It began to be both toilet-trained in its earliest months and severely punished for masturbation for the first time in history, and, as with the children of intrusive and over-demanding parents today, the predominant personality type which resulted was the obsessive-compulsive character, Freud's "anal personality," Erich Fromm's "hoarding character." It is this compulsive personality which has dominated the modern world, with its Faustian drive to control nature and its massive need to displace interpersonal aggression onto the social sphere. Only in the twentieth century are we slowly beginning to overcome the compulsive personality through a less intrusive, more helpful and empathic mode of parenting for some of our children.
Perhaps my brief summary of the findings of our little project in psychohistory will convey to you a taste of the excitement we have felt in using the tools and concepts of modern psychotherapy in a wider context. New kinds of questions have been generated at every turn, questions which can only be asked and answered within the conceptual framework of psychotherapy: Exactly what causes changes in parent-child relations over a series of generations? Why do some family lines show progress and others seem to stagnate? Why do some areas seem to lag far behind others? How can we better describe childhood modes and resulting personality-types? How might these concepts better explain our social problems? And, finally, merging into the field of contemporary family therapy, how can we facilitate those life-enhancing factors in childhood which further its evolution, applying our leverage for change where it is most meaningful, to childhood? Until we can extend our psychotherapy into a new science of psychohistory which can begin to give us answers to questions like these, we will no doubt continue our habit of giving highly destructive weapons to infantile leaders, who may yet use them to solve their personal problems and thereby end both our psychohistory and our psychotherapy together in one big bang.
- pp. 23-24: For many years I wondered why I, a radical and anti-nationalist, was nevertheless moved almost to tears when I stood with my son watching a parade with marching bands. The temptation was to shrug off the feeling or to give it a label that would deflect the discomfort, but I was so concerned with this feeling of being swept up by military music that I took to leaving my table at the New York Public Library each time I heard music from a military band going down Fifth Avenue just to see if I could catch my feeling and locate its power over me. If I seemed a little bit odd to associates who were with me at the time, so be it -- I had to try to answer this question, which was psychohistorical to its core. It was only after the discovery of the war-as-birth thesis that my mind returned to the question of why the bands move me so -- I now had a hunch that I knew the answer. I took a stop-watch out to the next parade and timed the beats of the band. They occurred at about 110-130 beats per minute. Then I timed some popular music, of the usual soothing quality, on the radio -- from 70 to 80 beats per minute. When I checked my wife's obstetrician, I found that the normal heart-beat is about 75 beats per minute and that the elevated heart-beat of a woman during a contraction in labor is between 110-150 beats per minute. I obviously was a baby being born while watching the parade, being picked up and carried along my mother's heart-beat whether I felt like it or not, and the tears in my eyes were for the impending separation from my mother! Perhaps not the most important discovery in the world, but one thoroughly psychohistorical -- and though its confirmation might be open to anyone using scientific canons of truth, its discovery was only open to the psychohistorian with the quite peculiar personality patterns and even lifestyle necessary for using one's emotions as tools for the investigation of group reality.
Here are some links:
"Heads and Tails" Money As a Poison Container LLOYD DEMAUSE - Journal of Psychohistory 16(1) Summer 1988
The Universality of Incest
'He [Freud] even called his own memories "genuine" of having been sexually molested as a little boy by his nurse [...] (24)
Therefore, regardless of all that has been written about the subject, an unbiased reading of Freud's works shows that whenever he confronted clear evidence of sexual molestation, he called it seduction, not fantasy. There was no "great reversal," no "suppression of seduction," no "betrayal of the child," no "assault on truth."
Freud's courage in acknowledging the extent of childhood sexual molestation was not shared by the majority of his colleagues. Most, like Jung, simply avoided the topic. Others, who noted that large numbers of their patients had clear memories of incestuous rape, blamed the victim, saying, like Abraham, that the molestation "was desired by the child unconsciously [because of an] abnormal psycho-sexual constitution..." (25)'
CITATIONS - The Universality of Incest Lloyd DeMause
"Sigmund Freud, The Origins of Psychoanalysis: Letters to Wilhelm Fliess, Drafts and Notes: 1887-1902. New York: Basic Books, 1954, p.220."
Chapter 2: Why Males Are More Violent
The Institute for Psychohistory
CH 3 pp 105 - 115 - FOUNDATIONS OF PSYCHOHISTORY
Here's a video:
YouTube - LloydDeMause's Channel