Have you ever had an extremely strange dream; possibly one in which you may have done something completely crazy or irrational? Have you thought to yourself: how could my own brain possibly come up with such an insane idea?
Psychoanalysis says that dreams are the road to the unconscious mind.
The basic thesis of Century of the Self is that deep inside the mind of every single human being is an unconscious mind which contains disturbing and irrational desires and fears. Essentially, that every single human being has the potential to become a violent rapist and murder. I know what you’re all probably thinking: there’s no way! I would NEVER become such a monster! There are only a select few people in this world who are psychopaths. They are the people who hurt and kill. It is not inside every human being.
But then how do you explain thousands of people becoming cold-blooded, heartless killers in Nazi Germany in World War II? Surely not every one of those soldiers was born a psychopath. There must have been some sort of irrational evil and violent desire that was manipulated within them.
During World War II, 49% of American soldiers were sent home due to mental breakdown. Psychoanalysts did studies on these soldiers, and concluded that it was not the stress and pain of war itself that was evoking this in the soldiers, but rather the stress of fighting that was bringing out repressed memories from when these men were children; memories of unconscious fears and desires that they had repressed because they had been too frightening for them as children.
Edward Bernays was Signmund Freud’s nephew. Anna Freud was his daughter. They carried on in Sigmund Freud’s footsteps and went along to prove his theory of psychoanalysis: if we can teach the human to strengthen their conscious mind or their “ego”, then we can help them to control their extremely dangerous desires hidden in their unconscious minds. Anna Freud’s guinea pigs in this experiment, were her friend Dorothy’s anxious and slightly emotionally disturbed children, Bob and Mabbey. I’ll let you know how that experiment worked out a little later on.
Dr. Ernest Dichter was a doctor who believed that psychoanalysis and the unconscious mind had everything to do with consumerism. He thought that people’s reasons for buying the things that they did lay in their unconscious desires.
He said that certain products could actually bring out a person’s self-image. People don’t actually buy things out of practicality. He called this “The Secret Self of the American Consumer.”
When marketing researchers first asked the public about the idea of a cake mix, they said they would definitely buy it. However, when it came out on the market, it sold terribly.
Psychoanalysis did some study, and discovered that by using the cake mix, women felt that they were being bad wives to their husbands. They felt they wouldn’t be fulfilling their proper “wife” duties because they it would be considered as lazy.
They found that by the woman added her own egg to the cake, it made her feel as if she was giving a solid contribution to the cake, therefore relieving her guilt about being too lazy to make her own cake. Dr Dichter and Betty Crocker company soon become millionaires
United Fruits was a dominant company in America. They had banana plantations in Guatemala. They called it a “Banana Republic”.
However, in 1950, Colonel JacoboArbenz was elected president in Guatemala and decided to turn the nation against the United Fruits Company, caliming that he sought to free them of the control that the corporation had over the nation.
And so the United Fruits Company sought the help of Edward Bernays.
This took place during the time of The Red Scare. This was a time when America and Russia were in a conflict, and people were afraid it was going to break out into WWIII. People in America were terrified of Russia and communism, and so Bernays made them believe that Arbenz was affiliated with Moscow and was completely communist. He arranged for many influential American journalists to come down to Guatemala and meet with politicians who were also convinced that Arbenz was a communist.
American president Eisenhauer was also convinced that America should try and topple the Arbenz government. He put together a C.I.A. rebellion that trained in the goal of terrifying Arbenz’s troops. Arbenz fled the country.
So Bernays had successfully manipulated the Americans. He called this: “The Enegennering of Consent”.
They said that if we, as humans, possess irrational fears, then we cannot be trusted to be democratic. Therefore, they decided they had to manipulate us into thinking we wanted certain things. That way, we would vote for who they manipulated us to vote for.
Dr. Ewan Cameron was an impatient psychiatrist. He didn’t want to wait for external treatment to help his patients come to terms with their negative memories. He wanted to directly eliminate them. This experiment was funded by the C.I.A.
He opened the Allan Memorial Hospital in Montreal. He gave his patients strong treatment, such as LSD and the most harmful: electro convulsive therapy. This eliminated ALL memory from his patients. They became completely empty, blank slates. He tried to instil a new behaviour in them. This was a failure, because they essentially just ended up lost people with no memory of their past. The Allan Memorial closed down.
Marilyn Monroe, although beautiful and famous and had any man in the entire world available to her, suffered depression which led to addiction of drugs and alcohol. She felt helpless and loveless.
Psychoanalyst Dr. Greenson attempted to give her a family life environment that she had never had in order to strengthen the person and the ego that lay beneath the flawless face and figure of America’s most sought after woman. This way, she would have more control over the frustration and anxiety that arose from her irrational fears and desires.
Unfortunately, the treatment failed, and she killed herself at only thirty-six years old.
As for Anna Freud’s psychoanalysis gunia pigs, her friend Dorothy’s children Bob and Mabbey, Bob ended up dying of alcoholism and Mabbey ended up committing suicide.
The Engineering Of Consent
The Engineering of Consent<br />By Jill Ohayon<br />
Have you ever had an extremely strange dream?<br />
Dreams are the direct road to the unconscious mind.<br />
Hidden in the unconscious mind of every human:<br />Irrational, dangerous, and disturbing desires.<br />