“AGAINST SELF-CRITICISM”. I have posted, for example here, about how most people have an inner voice that they use to talk to themselves abusively in way they would never talk to anybody else, and so I was interested in an essay by Adam Phillips with the title “Against Self-Criticism” in the London Review of Books (March 5) (link via arts and letters daily). I read the essay, even though it contained the daunting names Freud and Lacan. (This wikipedia essay says that Adam Phillips is a psychoanalyst who “has been described by The Times as ‘the Martin Amis of British psychoanalysis’ for his ‘brilliantly amusing and often profoundly unsettling’ work”.) In the first paragraph, Phillips paraphrases a Lacan comment on “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”: “Or you could say that, given the way people treat one another, perhaps they had always loved their neighbours in the way they loved themselves: that is, with a good deal of cruelty and disregard.”

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