The Riggs Blog
The Riggs blog is a mix of news about clinical work, research and educational activities from the Austen Riggs Center, as well as a source for information beyond our walls that we find interesting and thought-provoking.
Dame Gillian Lynne is Broadway Royalty. She choreographed Cats and Phantom of the Opera, and at 88 is still dancing, but the story of the start of her career, told on NPR in a story on Weekend Edition Saturday, is a cautionary tale about the danger of viewing problems in psychiatry through the lens of vulnerability rather than plasticity. By the time Gillian was 7, her mother and her teachers were at their wits end with little “wriggle bottom,” who could not sit still and had no attention span.
"If, like me, you have a deep desire to understand what it is to be human, are not afraid to be challenged, and feel that one is able to truly make a clinical difference to someone through the power of analysis and perseverance, I cannot recommend a medical elective at Austen Riggs highly enough."
“People have eyes to see, ears to hear and art to feel.” Jo Ann Rothschild quoted her first teacher, Leo Garel, in an interview discussing her upcoming gallery opening in Stockbridge, MA. “One of the things that Leo taught is that art is useful for everyone. We do not have a specific organ to help us experience or even process our emotions, and that is where art comes in. Leo used to say that art is the organ for emotion.”
The history of trauma resides in each of us – as citizens we are marked by the past and present events taking place in the surrounding world. We ask the question – what to do with the casualties, the physically and psychically wounded and the collective injury to ideals of human dignity and community? This becomes a central task for those traumatized by various forms of violence, degradation, or disaster.