Last week a bunch of real people got into a room to talk about narcissism. Given that this was located in the London School of Economics there was the vague possibility that someone would get the hump. Some would say taking a poll on the statement “I think I’m a special person” somewhat indencury.
Turns out though that we’re even more perfectly formed that we could possibly have hoped for, chuckling our way through ideas on narcissism as a defense against the facts of life. Vulnerability, loneliness, exclusion and our eventual death. From David Morgan talking about development and intimacy, Marianna Fotaki on narcissism and the NHS, Steve Fuller on personhood, to Yiannis Gabriel talking about our narcissistic deficit and culture of echoes (awkward moment when he took a pop at cosmetics just as I was applying lipgloss. Cut to camera).
Turns out that we have indeed the stomach for being a room with different separate other people. Testimony to our adulthood that the only moment when it looked like it was going to kick off was when the ordinarily captivating David Morgan introduced a reference to the work of Lars Von Trier at which point we learn that a Danish film director causes more fear and loathing than the prospect of our own mortality.
If we know ourselves through our relationships with other people last week we were beautiful people. Many of us taking the intimacy pledge.
Read our eBook to celebrate 100 years of Freud’s On Narcissism here.
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