Repress Yourself Reaction Essay Assignment
The first step of this assignment is to carefully read the NY Times Magazine article Repress Yourself by Lauren Slater (Feb. 23, 2003), which is available in the Course Documents section. Dont be intimidated by her somewhat cynical and know-it-all style — there is plenty of room for criticism and meaningful discussion of her claims. In fact, thats what I want you to do in this assignment.
Your essay should address the following issues (in no particular order):
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• What does Slater claim about the effectiveness of current methods of dealing with psychological trauma, and how does she relate it to repression? What evidence does she supply in support of her claim? Do you agree with her stance on this basic issue?
• Is Slaters view of repression consistent with that of Freuds? If not, how does it differ?
• What are her conclusions about the use of repression? Do you agree? Support your answer with reasons. Do you have any alternative suggestions? Is it possible that what Slater is labeling repression in some of the examples she cites may be more accurately understood to be a different defense mechanism?
Remember to read the article with a sharp and critical eye. What I definitely dont want is a simple summary of the article; I want you to grapple with the many interesting and important issues that Slater raises in this piece and give me a substantive essay that reflects your thinking.
The essay must be spell-checked, proof-read, and written in your own words. Guideline for length: the equivalent of 3 or 4 typewritten pages.