Therapeutic reflections on the ‘pandemic’

Keywords: group behaviour, mass psychosis, ‘pandemic’, psychoanalysis, revolt, ‘vaccines’, witch craze


This article attempts to think through the many, often contradictory aspects of the present ‘pandemic’, with a view to arriving at a cogent notion of what ‘psychotherapy’ would mean under these circumstances. It begins with a note on the hermeneutic meaning of ‘prejudice’ and how this applies to the present article, and then proceeds to a consideration of the relevance of the idea of ‘mass psychosis’, informed by Leonard Shlain’s characterisation of the 16th century witch hunts in western Europe, in the course of which more than half a million women were executed as supposed ‘witches’. This suggests a parallel with today’s manifestation of what is arguably a mass psychosis, induced by endemic fear of lethal contamination, fed by global governmental responses (prescribed by the World Health Organization) to the alleged ‘pandemic’ caused by this pathogen. Aspects of what might be called the current ‘vaccine tyranny’ are investigated, as well as the nature of a ‘mass psychosis’, which is explored from various perspectives (including Lacanian psychoanalysis), before attention shifts to the issue of appropriate psychotherapy, with recourse to the thinking of Julia Kristeva on ‘revolt’ and Lacan on the ‘revolutionary’s choice’.


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How to Cite
Olivier, B. (2022). Therapeutic reflections on the ‘pandemic’. Psychotherapy & Politics International, 20(1 & 2).