8/04/2013

Gaslighting

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaslighting

 
     "Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making a victim doubt his or her own memoryperception and sanity.[1] Instances may range simply from the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, up to the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim."
     "The term "gaslighting" comes from the play Gas Light and its film adaptations. The term is now also used in clinical and research literature."[2][3]
     The 1941-1944 American version of Gas Light, called Angel Street, starred Vincent Price as Mr. Barrows. The role would prove very influential. "Although it was never explicitly confirmed, many critics and scholars see the play and its adaptations as subtle retellings of the Bluebeard folk tale... The plot concerns a husband who attempts to convince his wife and others that she is insane by manipulating small elements of their environment, and subsequently insisting that she is mistaken or misremembering when she points out these changes. The title stems from the dimming of the house's gas lights which happens when the husband is using the gas lights in the attic while searching there for hidden treasure. The wife accurately notices the dimming lights, but the husband insists she is imagining."

     "Psychologist Martha Stout states that sociopaths frequently use gaslighting tactics. Sociopaths consistently transgress social mores, break laws, and exploit others, but are also typically charming and convincing liars who consistently deny wrongdoing. Thus, some who have been victimized by sociopaths may doubt their perceptions.[6] Jacobson and Gottman report that some physically abusive spouses may gaslight their partners, even flatly denying that they have been violent."[3]

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