Thursday, October 21, 2021

Comments by ColinB897

Showing 7 of 7 comments.

  • Coming at this late Fred: been pinned down in a draining difference of opinion at work; should children in their autistic foxholes have their perspectives heard and respected, or should they be seen as getting it wrong when they disagree with those exercising authority over them.
    Your “who will hear or even believe or understand how it is useful, no one I know of for sure so far but me”, applies there. The perspicacious perspective they come to in their existential foxholes, so exquisitely tailored to meeting their own needs to survive and thrive, that its veracity simply passes unnoticed and un-noted through the membrane of interface with a contextualising collective.
    Your reference to prayer sees me thinking in terms of “faith”. I’m thinking of ontology and epistemology in one person. It strikes me that what provides individual integrity in the foxhole, is akin to the collective ontological/epistemological exercise being run within one person. Such that we have something akin to an absolutely self-reliant faith action at the centre of things.
    So there is an indeterminate constituency running perspective (sensing, feeing, thinking) a contextualising collective is in others instances deeming madness (and crucifying individuals thereby), who are not being drawn completely into the vortex of a collective’s reductive meaning-making. There is a constituency of guerrilla survivors in foxholes.

    I think Dr Cornwall’s linking of neuroscience and psychiatry and the effects of a psychiatry defining itself in term of neuroscience, then succeeds in placing the overall field of this in perspective; giving grasp of fundamentals thereby. Discourse becomes possible because succinct grasp of a phenomenon has been offered.
    One of the difficulties then is (and I think of my situation at work this week), that it is challenging to bring that comprehensive perspective into play (with colleagues) in realtime practice.. Part of that difficulty is that such potential discursive partners would themselves have to imaginatively cross the Rubicon of entertaining what is collectively deemed in and of the realm of madness (mad sensing, feeling, thinking, talking, theorising).

  • If you allow that I am riding the dragon of your existential impulse Seth. I very rarely have the opportunity to have my impulse play out in the locus your investing. So I can better understand my positioning in terms of where I’m coming from, than I can fully grapple with the horizon of perspective which you open up.
    I understand myself in terms of resistance by an isolated individual. I understand those I support, in terms of their resisting when isolated by the machination of collective process and its power. I sense and think-about and theorise-about and talk-about the nexus of this, in terms of an autistic-social dynamic. My life concern is autistic-survival: where the exigency in this is so great, and the mechanics of the autistic-social dynamic so fills the existential foreground; that I am pinned down in the immediacy of resisting and surviving.
    The consequence then is that I do not articulate (with discourse) the genre of broader contextualising perspective that you do.
    This perspective obtains for me aesthetically (cf. Daniel Tammet: ) or emotionally. There it has ontological and epistemological dimension (so satisfying your condition that “Its contestation must be more than local. It must be universal, metaphysical, it must be based upon a vision cosmic in its scopeā€“it must constitute a counter-culture.”). However, that perspectivising is predicated on and consumed in the resisting of a moment, and is never positioned to become structural across the ever-shifting dynamics of the autistic-social nexus.
    I understand why you associate the construction “identity politics” with such moments of playing out.
    I then understand the position of an autistically situated constituency to be relatively benign compared to the exigency of constituencies aggregated across other diagnoses and treatments. I see their point-present struggle for survival and the continuance of resistance, as more onerous. The point then being that structural or metaphysical outcome is then even less possible than with the autistic. Seed-insight is consumed as it arises, and it is fundamentally difficult to stream evidence of it out of a consuming inferno. Counter-culture here takes on terrible existential form.
    I’m not sure what the impulse to resist and survive translates to. On one interpretation it translates to an integrity dynamic. We have evolved as earth-bound sentient creatures, and perhaps a radical integrity dynamic simply cleaves to the truth of what we have evolved to be, and refuses to partake of collective mythology. Maybe that sense of things comes close to what you phrase as ontological equality.
    In the sense that cleaving to the truth of what we have evolved to be, would be optimally functional: then we would there have effective caring; and perhaps that caring merits the term love.
    I think we may be dealing with echoes of the same events in human life. You articulating what you derive from these echoes on a cosmic and universal horizon; you concerned that bettering macro-effect should emerge. Myself concerned that the existentiality of the individuals embedded in events should not be overwhelmed in this moment.

  • “The material and what stands around it representing an extreme of a type of empowerment; those seen as unhealthy across diagnosis representing an extreme of a type of empowerment.”
    Should read.
    “The material and what stands around it representing an extreme of a type of empowerment; those seen as unhealthy across diagnosis representing an extreme of a type of disempowerment.”

  • Seth, I think I’ve reflexively retreated from the material plane of things, across my biographical development. I think I’ve done so as reaction and response to the degree of asymmetry involved in the spectrum of empowerment. The material and what stands around it representing an extreme of a type of empowerment; those seen as unhealthy across diagnosis representing an extreme of a type of empowerment.
    Foucault then seems to me to make a good fist of considering how discourse plays crucial part in mediating that spectrum of empowerment.
    The fundamentally disempowered are then not passive non-agents in all of this. Across their existentiality those who are so disempowered resist the power that disempowers them.
    That resistance is active and intelligent. It scans and evaluates the disempowering environment. It researches the ground and dynamics of the disempowering power; it researches what countervails that power. It is a deeply empirical activity.
    That activity yields sensing and cognition and theorising with potential to countervail the disempowering power. What is so produced has to then be retrieved from the overall field where an environing power will nonetheless grind on to effectively destroy the capacity of the individual to produce such countervailing resource.
    That grinding destruction is crucially mediated by the discursive process which Foucault points to. Psychiatry (as we currently find it) and other disciplinary projects are crucial components and players in that discursive process. Psychiatric perception and understanding constitutes a knowledge prism which deconstructs and reconstructs what countervails the disempowering power, in realtime. What in fact and truth countervails the disempowering power, is reconstructed by psychiatry as symptom and indicator of unhealthy; psychiatry thereby eviscerating the ground of effective countervailing.
    In this patient/client-psychiatrist interaction and exchange, the patient-client faces defeat in any immediacy; but the countervailing resource can be saved. That saved resource then embedded in the being of the persons coming out the other end of the healthcare grinder.
    The crucial matter then, is to retrieve the saved resource; the very human and existential moment of effective resistance. Effective micro resistance. People have to recover themselves around and across such retrieved moments and resources. Groupings and movements and systems have to be built around and across that recovery and retrieval.
    Sympathetic Professionals and concerned parents and allies, can pre-empt the destruction of the resisting individual, can prevent the destruction running its course.
    Effective micro-resistance can involved the destruction of the resisting individual. What arises in the field of such micro-resisting can be streamed into what takes on macro force.
    The question then is what is involved in the meta-resourcing of that streaming. Clearly that meta-resourcing is counter-cultural, because what it intends opposes what a prevailing culture is mediating.
    My sense is that the seed-insight for that meta-resource is already in play in the existentiality of those psychiatry sorely treats.

  • I look to what Foucault examined as madness and deviance for resource. Resource to resist.

    There is something of a system in place and running in human collective life. In some of its aspects that system is monstrous, and not open to being immediately combatted.
    As the process of that system bears on individuals who resist it, we encounter the constituency who implement and sustain that system, and we encounter that constituency who resist that system.

    The butcher’s shop of that system’s suppression of those who resist, is also the laboratory and workshop of the means of resistance.
    The interface is asymmetric, and the means of resistance being forged are not on open display; but rather must be sought out by those with an interest in them.

    What we then require are the meta-perspectives of resistance. Frames of reference which recognise and valorise the resisting the system sets out to grind into oblivion. Frames of reference which can recognise and retrieve and makes use of the means of resistance forged by those in the grinder.

  • I come at this topic from an autistic locus (in Scotland). Professional experts and managers then tend to be persons on “another side of things”; certainly in settings of care and education regulated by the State and much funded by the State. Some parents, some staff, and some professionals; then get drawn into advocating for those on the autistic side of things.
    While the autistic is not medicated per se, many presentations (such as anxiety, effective depression, sleeping difficulties, impulsivity) accompanying the autistic are medicated; and there is a current impulse to intervene very early.
    It is then arguable that an autistically characterised activist community is emerging. This emergence much mediated by: parental impulse to protect children from harm; parental impulse to see the world changed to better accommodate their children.
    It seems to me that what is there happening at this autistic locus, is well positioned to bring about the change Dr Cornwall is looking to. I then think that the frame of reference being developed to secure such change, would generalise and be of use to other constituencies: such as those currently seen and treated as schizophrenic or bipolar.
    I would then be optimistic about the dynamics favouring change; even while being realistic about the dynamics which would see us remaining on a “business as usual” trajectory.

    Every day, in an educational and care setting, I see young autistic people robustly scenting and demanding what Dr Cornwall looks to. This push factor is vigorous and massively powerful, it driven by and rather reflecting the general changes taking place in our collective life. It’s sensory and socio-political palpability and ground draws in allies beyond parents.
    The experts and managers can win every battle, in the sense of overpowering each individual they manage to isolate and define and treat diagnostically: but the line they try to impose and hold is constantly being pressed and pushed back; and they will eventually lose the war (against perceived unhealth) they engage in. As Dr Cornwall suggests, the paradigm they use to inform what they do, is not sufficiently fit for purpose.

  • I would endorse Dr Cornwall’s grounding thesis. I share the concerns he so succinctly expresses.

    The question as to whether psychiatry’s argued for harming of children will effect its existence as an institution, is an important one.
    There are dynamics that would suggest so. Activism by clients of psychiatry is now a powerful force. There are dynamics which suggest we might continue to support what is harming is.
    The nexus of these things is clearly complex.

    I like the idea that we simply do the right thing, we who see things as does Dr Cornwall. That is we act across a determination that things must so change that the institution Dr Cornwall describes will wither away.