Home Forums General General Victorian nutjobs

This topic contains 7 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Guy Farrish Guy Farrish 2 years, 8 months ago.

Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #59599
    Ochoin
    Ochoin
    Participant

    With my interest switched to the Sudan,

    If you have an insight, please reply.

    donald

    • This topic was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Ochoin Ochoin.
    • This topic was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Ochoin Ochoin.
    • This topic was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Ochoin Ochoin.
    #59602
    Not Connard Sage
    Not Connard Sage
    Participant

    He didn’t ‘style himself Chinese Gordon’. It was a nickname given to him after his service in China.

     

     

    "I go online sometimes, but everyone's spelling is really bad. It's... depressing."

    #59603
    Mike
    Mike
    Keymaster

    I’ve never met an Australian from the state of Victoria who wasn’t a few crumbs short of a tin of biscuits so maybe it’s just the name. If you have an insight, please reply.

    Or don’t,  cos making fun of mental health issues is not cool.
    Not yet convinced it has much to do with gaming either?

     

     

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Mike Mike.
    #59610
    Guy Farrish
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    No wish to make fun of mental health issues.

    Relevance to wargaming? Could be quite high, depending on the type of wargaming you do and what you want to put in and get out of the activity.

    Making a sensible analysis and diagnosis from records of individuals dead decades or centuries is at best ‘problematic’ however, and prone to pastiche and massive simplification – not to mention just plain prejudice.

    Take ‘Chinese’ Gordon for example. (See NCS above for name). His behaviour in modern eyes is unusual. He has been characterised as a repressed homosexual (or not so repressed and possibly a paedophile) which inspired his growing religious fervour as a means of expiating his guilt, which prompted his apparently bizarre behaviour and later military judgements. On top of modern cynicism about his altruism, the fact that he never married is offered as evidence of his repressed sexual preferences.

    However there is another, less Freudian explanation; that he may have suffered from Aspergers  and this accounted for his difficulty in social contact with women and his social awkwardness and punctilious following of protocol which lost him favour in China. Just this one individual is a minefield for amateur diagnosis and phrases like ‘nutjob’ and ‘psycho’ may provide a shorthand for a bar room rpg but they don’t really tell us much about the individuals or the real reasons behind their behaviours.

    Besides, pigeonholing mental states from cultures far away in time and space is usually wrong both because of the different cultural norms and the certainty that our definitions and classifications will themselves change in a few years anyway. A brief look at the changing views on mental health over the last thirty years, legally, socially and clinically, will confirm this for you.

    #59612
    Ochoin
    Ochoin
    Participant

    Fixed.

    #59613
    Robey Jenkins
    Robey Jenkins
    Participant

    Perhaps we could re-think this thread as “Famous and Infamous 19th Century Eccentrics”?

    No doubt future generations will look back upon our own treatment of mental health disorders with horror and amazement, but historically-speaking many great achievements and horrific acts have emerged primarily from the damaged or distorted psyches of powerful men (and even a few women, although in the 19th century, it was, mostly, men).

    Gordon is one example, but we could equally look at Brunel or Richard Burton or Cecil Rhodes or Rudyard Kipling or James Stephenson.  Hm.  The military and engineering seem to dominate.  Are there other fields of Victorian enterprise that deserve some attention?  Ooh, Stanley and Livingstone!

    R.

    #59614
    Mike
    Mike
    Keymaster

    Perhaps we could re-think this thread as “Famous and Infamous 19th Century Eccentrics”?

    Famous and Infamous 19th Century Eccentrics that are relevant to gaming  

    #59616
    Guy Farrish
    Guy Farrish
    Participant

    Not 19th Century, but beautifully indicative of how large a pinch of cultural salt we should take even ‘academic’ views on historical mental illness is the case of Joan of Arc. I’m not going to bore you with the whole ‘hearing voices’ bit – if you don’t know, Google (other search engines are available) will lead you on a merry path – but take this piece from Clifford Allen in 1975

    ‘Again a large percentage of those who will later develop schizophrenia show signs of homosexuality. Could the fact that Joan wore men’s clothes, which were quite contrary to feminine custom in those days, and rode about with soldiers, be taken as an indication of such abnormality? It seems very likely.’

    http://www.medievalists.net/files/09012321.pdf

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11630627

    Dr Allen of course believed homosexuality was a psychological disorder brought about by early childhood.

    Hmmm?

     

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by Guy Farrish Guy Farrish.
Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)

The topic ‘Victorian nutjobs’ is closed to new replies.