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Jungian psychologist Tanya Wilkinson takes a balanced and compassionate look at the issue of victimization. In an engaging and entertaining style, she explore myths and fairy tales involving victims and heroes and encourages individuals to reach a new level of spiritual and emotional maturity.
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Using myth and fairy tales, Dr. Tanya Wilkinson adds insightful commentary on the individual dynamics and cultural patterns which contribute to the deep schism between "victims" and "heroes" in our society. In modern life we sympathize only with the blameless victim, and cling to the image of a "heroic ideal" - that is, if we are only good enough or strong enough, bad things will not happen to us. But bad things do happen to good and strong people, as well as to people who are not entirely blameless. Dr. Wilkinson moves beyond the debate of "who's at fault". Using the Persephone myth and four fairy tales, the author instead illustrates the deep archetypal forces at work in victim experiences and encourages us to search for the emotional and spiritual maturity which may be gained from them.From Booklist:
The archetypal figure of the victim seems omnipresent today. Yet we are getting only half its story, psychologist Wilkinson argues, for we don't hear the resolution of victim scenarios, in which the transformed victim rejoins the community. Employing myths and legends as they are illuminated by her experiences with therapeutic clients, Wilkinson sets out to redress the situation. She discloses several alternative paths a victimized person may take--the ways of the redeemer, seeker, pariah, or trickster. Each path has survival value for the victim during the oppressive experience but often paralyzes the victim after a threat ceases. The story Beauty and the Beast, for instance, epitomizes the way in which one victimized child in a family can act as "redeemer" by going as a living sacrifice to be with the family's "beast." Rather than being trapped in such behavior, though, redeemers, Wilkinson says, need to consider the apparent selfishness of Beauty's actions, which miraculously reveal the Prince within the Beast. Excellent psychological self-help literature. Patricia Monaghan
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