Tuesday, April 5, 2022

Ukraine and Russia: the Tragic Mask

Head of Janus, Vatican Museum (photo: Loudon Dodd)

The hatred between the Russians in like bipolar disorder, ego splitting or some psychic pathology predicated on a divided self. What about The Civil War or any civil war, say like that between the Bosnians and Serbs or Tutsi and Hulas in Rwanda, or the Tigray in Eritrea? The complexity is that Russian culture, at least the part involved in the current conflicts, is more proximate. Minsk, Kiev, Moscow, Odessa have represented the most sophisticated and, in some ways, most homogeneous strains of Russian culture. The Pale of Settlement, in which Jews were confined, producing the thriving Yiddish language, crossed all three terrains. Chekhov’s famous short story “Lady With the Dog” is set in the Crimean resort of Yalta. In addition, many Ukrainians and Russians are cousins and even husbands and wives. When you watch the scenes of carnage you think about the death instinct and the propensity of human beings to destroy as well as create. Ukrainians rightly accuse Putin of genocide. Despite the biblical example of Cain and Abel, it takes work to turn a brother against his other. In the case of Ukraine and Russia, the reconciliation commission will be dealing with the same Solomonic issues faced by failed marriages. Russia and Ukraine are one person riven by self-annihilating intra-psychic conflict. The tragic mask is Janus faced.

Read "Polymathic Perversity" by Francis Levy, HuffPost

and watch the animation of Erotomania

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