Comparing Glenn Most's Emotion, Memory, And Trauma

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Glenn Most’s “Emotion, Memory, and Trauma” weaves in and out of various philosophical theories that display the interconnectedness of his three topics. Most begins the piece by addressing emotions. He agrees with the Aristotelian view in that he sees emotions as normal, reasonable reactions to a certain kind of stimulus. (Most, pg. 5) Most then brings up the question of inappropriate emotions, of which he says there are 3 types: degree of response, response for no reason, and the wrong response. (Most, pg. 4) An example as to how the degree of response can be inappropriate is found in the novel mentioned by Most, Fury by Salman Rushdie, but also in the short story The Stone Boy by Berriault. In Fury the main character finds himself trembling with rage at a minor annoyance. Arnold in The Stone Boy, however, does not seem to react at the accidental death of his brother. In both stories it is clear that the severity …show more content…
As we travel through Twlya and Roberta’s lives and therefore their character development, the reader can determine which of the two development models to put stock in. In regard to the continuous model, the reader could argue that the intrinsic nature of the two girls does not change throughout the story. For example, from the beginning of “Recitatif” Twyla seems to be confrontational. “My mother won’t like you putting me in here.” she tells “Bozo”. (Morrison, pg. 1) Later in the story, this confrontational nature recurs. As Twyla attempts to counter-protest Roberta, she holds up a sign which reads, “IS YOUR MOTHER WELL?”. (Morrison, 17) This particularly personal attack was in reference to Roberta’s sickly mother. This then is an example of Most’s inappropriate emotions in the sense that this response could be seen as one of the wrong degree. Roberta was clearly protesting against something that Twyla agreed with, but the deeply personal attack against Roberta was