Quiz: Empty Self
1. According to Cushman, "...our terrain has shaped a self that experiences a significant lack of ...... " Name one lacking thing.

2. Inner emptiness can express itself, according to Cushman, in a number of ways. One way is: "low self-esteem (28)." Name two other ways.

3. True or False. According to Cushman, consumer society encourages the development of an inner-directed rugged individualism (26).

4. Fill in the blank, according to Cushman, the two primary means for "healing" the empty self are psychotherapy and ......

5. Cushman seems to think there is a difference between the Victorian Self and the Empty Self. Very roughly what are the differences (in a sentence or two).

6. Cushman seems to feel modern persons are "alienated," in some sense. Consumer society offers as a "cure" to that alienation, the "life-style" solution (29). What is that?

7. While Cushman is himself a psychotherapist (out of Berkeley, I think), he seems to feel that something is wrong with psychotherapy in the current consumer society. In a sentence or so, indicate what he thinks is the problem.

Read and then paraphrase (in your own words) this quotation:

Because emptiness is. in part, an absence of communal forms and beliefs. individuals in the postwar era are thusparticuJarly vulnerable to influence from cultural forms such as advertising that emanate authority and certainty. A good case could be made that many current advertisements (e.g., regarding body odor, hair color or life insurance) are less a type. of benign guidance and more a kind ofcoercive attack. Ads seem to criticize and condemn the average consumer while glorifying the model, extolling a standard of beauty and mastery impossible to achieve. Advertising certainly does not address itself to the political causes of the customer's problems (e.g., alienation and the loss ofcommunity); therefore, it must turn to the refuge ofwhat I will refer to as the lifestyle solution. Unable to elreet lasting change by developing political solutions to the problems of modem life, advertising must offer an illusory cure. One prominent type ofad offers the fantasy that the consumer's life can be transformed into a glorious, problem-free life-the "life" of the model who is featured in the ad. This can be accomplished by purchasing and "ingesting" the product, which will magically transfer the life-style ofthe model to 1he consumer. By surrounding themselves with the accoutrements of the model, by ingesting the proper liquid while wearing the proper clothing, all the while exhibiting the proper shape, customers seek to "become" the model. The customer's problems will simply disappear when the magical transfer takes place.