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Selvets Amerika

– Wallace snakker om at vi må velge hva vi vil være oppmerksomme på, slik at vi ikke blir stuck in a default mode, sier Jon Vøllestad, som selv interesserer seg for oppmerksomt nærvær i fagpsykologien.

I romanen Infinite Jest fant Jon Vøllestad en storslått skildring av depresjon, avhengighet og individets vilkår i en verden uten klare orienteringspunkter.

– Den skildret en moderne psykologi, og en kulturkritikk som foregrep Trumps Amerika, mener han.

Publisert
1. februar 2019

Welcome to the meaning of individual. We’re each deeply alone here

David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest, s. 112

It is a level of psychic pain wholly incompatible with human life as we know it. It is a sense of radical and thoroughgoing evil not just as a feature but as the essence of conscious existence. It is a sense of poisoning that pervades the self at the self’s most elementary levels. It is a nausea of the cells and soul (s. 695).
 
It is also lonely on a level that cannot be conveyed … If a person in physical pain has a hard time attending to anything except that pain, a clinically depressed person cannot even perceive any other person or thing as independent of the universal pain that is digesting her cell by cell. Everything is a part of the problem, and there is no solution … Thus the loneliness: it’s a closed circuit: the current is both applied and received from within (s. 696). 
Part of the feeling is being like willing to do anything to make it go away. Understand that. Anything. Do you understand? It’s not wanting to hurt myself it’s wanting to not hurt» (s. 78).
I stedet for å forholde oss til livet med åpenhet og fleksibilitet, så blir oppmerksomheten og bevisstheten kapret av negative opplevelser og mer eller mindre automatiske forsøk på å komme seg ut av dem. Handlingsrommet snevres inn. Og menneskets mest grunnleggende erfaringsenhet ­– dette øyeblikket – blir noe man enten trekkes vekk fra gjennom bekymring og grubling eller aktivt forsøker å unnslippe gjennom andre unngåelsesstrategier.
Jim, a tennis ball is the ultimate body. Perfectly round. Even distribution of mass. But empty inside, utterly, a vacuum. Susceptible to whim, spin, to force – used well or poorly. It will reflect your own character. Characterless itself. Pure potential (s. 160).  
Becoming the object of compassionate sorrow rather than disappointed sorrow (s. 955).
Johnny Gentle, the first U.S. President ever to swing his microphone around by the cord during his Inauguration speech (s. 382).

Du må være abonnent eller medlem av Psykologiforeningen for å lese videre.

Ikke abonnent? Få 12 papirutgaver og ubegrenset tilgang til alle digitale utaver for 1495 i året

Teksten sto på trykk første gang i Tidsskrift for Norsk psykologforening, Vol 56, nummer 2, 2019, side 116-125

Kommenter denne artikkelen

Lacayo, R. (2010). All-Time 100 novels. TIME. http://entertainment.time.com/2005/10/16/all-time-100-novels/slide/all/

Max, D.T. (2012). Every Love Story is a Ghost Story. A life of David Foster Wallace. New York: Viking Penguin.

Vøllestad, J. (2014). Sterk romandebut fra gammel mester. Tankevandring. https://tankevandring.blogspot.com/2014/10/sterk-romandebut-fra-gammel-mester.html

Vøllestad, J. (2018). Mindfulness – en gjennomgang av kunnskapsstatus og relevans for psykologisk behandling. Scandinavian Psychologist, 5, e1.  https://doi.org/10.15714/scandpsychol.5.e1

Wallace, D.F. (1996). Infinite Jest. Little, Brown and Company.

Wallace, D.F. (1998). A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again: Essays and arguments. Little, Brown and Company.

Wallace, D.F. (1999). Brief interviews with hideous men. Little, Brown and Company.

Wallace, D.F. (2007). Glemsel. N.W. Damm & Søn AS.

Wallace, D.F. (2009). This is water. Little, Brown and Company.