The Need for Catharsis

Posted by on Feb 3, 2017 in Catherine Ann Jones, Catherine's Blog

        Oscar Pick for 2017

It is the time for viewing Oscar screeners before voting. With few exceptions, I find less and less films I wish to see, let alone hail for an Oscar. So far, the best (in my opinion) is Lion, a moving film set in Calcutta and Australia, about a lost child adopted by Australian parents and years later, returns to India seeking home. From what I’ve seen so far, this film deserves Best Picture, but this may not mean it will win. I am simply grateful that this film was made. Many good screenplays  with heart and soul do not make the cut and are never seen.

This is a time of uncertainty – both personally and collectively, so negative, violent,  or cynical stories sell much easier. It is the times. I loved Lion because, though the details of the protagonist’s life are not my own, I could relate to the longing to come home, and with the emotional intensity, a sense of catharsis was set in motion.

Catharsis means ‘cleansing’ in Greek. “A Catharsis is an emotional discharge through which one can achieve a state of moral or spiritual renewal or achieve a state of liberation from anxiety and stress.”  If ever we needed catharsis, it is now.

To close, I offer this excerpt from Margaret Atwood’s essay, Creative Reconstruction (The Nation, Feb 2017):

“As once-solid certainties crumble, it may be enough to create alternate worlds that offer both temporary escapes and moments of insight; to open windows in the given world that allow us to see outside it. Throughout history, it has been hope for artistic work that expresses, for this time and place, as powerfully and eloquently as possible, what it is to be human.”

Writers, Artists, journey deep within and return to create catharsis for the people.

Find the Lion within.

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