Paranoia, Society, and History
           A lecture by Luigi Zoja of Milan, Italy

 
Friday, May 26
7:30-10:00 p.m.
The John Molson School of Business
1450 rue Guy
(Metro Guy/Concordia)
Room MB3.210
Members $12
Non-Members $15
Students/Senior Members $8
 
 

 
           
       
From the solitude of Sophocles’s Ajax to the sickness of Shakespeare’s Othello, and from Cain to George Bush, Jr., this lecture reconstructs the emblematic arguments that paranoia has promoted in Western history. Paranoia runs away with itself, but also with our history, unless we understand history, tragic literature, and depth psychology. 
      While other forms of mental illness are far more immediate, such as the current plague of eating disorders, only paranoia can literally make history, as it did through Hitler and Stalin. It can take hold of events directly because, unlike much social pathology, it is contagious. Far from being individual, its dynamics are self-replicating, devouring entire societies.
      This fact stems from the rigid circularity of paranoia. Masquerading behind false logic, it is fatally attractive to simpler minds. It aims straight at its goal of destruction, and to the average person its impatience is far more seductive than any political, religious, or ideological discourse.
     Modern mass communication has endowed collective paranoia with an amplifying and even more self-feeding power.
     This lecture will follow the development of paranoia throughout history.
 
Luigi Zoja, Ph.D. is a former training analyst of the C. G. Jung Institute in Zürich and past-president of IAAP (International Association for Analytical Psychology). He has had clinical practices in Zürich, Milan, New York and again in Milan. He is the author of numerous papers and books, published in fifteen languages.
Paranoia: The Madness that Makes History (Routledge) was just released in March 2017.

Luigi Zoja has been named Routledge's Mental Health Author of the Month for May, 2017. See the following website for an interview with the author.