On the Aesthetics of Self Expression

Technological Milieu and Threats to the Future of Theoretical Psychology





technology, Bahktin, Marcuse, theoretical psychology, aesthetics


Theoretical psychology is at its best when it engages in the wider psychological community by bringing about critical reflection and synthesis. This vision is challenging to accomplish due to “anesthesia”: a practice of ‘comatose’ production divorced from authentically generative activity and meaningful engagement with others. This notion is developed by drawing on Marcuse’s discussion of the surplus of suppression enabled by technology and a hyperreal milieu. Technological practices such as the engineering of social media platforms maximize anesthesia and amplify such concerns. I advocate for a turn to Bakhtinian aesthetics of self-expression to spell out an aesthetic for theoretical psychology.

Author Biography

Jim Cresswell, Department of Social Sciences; Ambrose University

James Cresswell is a professor at Ambrose University. His work involves communitybased research aimed at using research to support community organizations. Other areas of interest include: poverty; theoretical, historical, and philosophical psychology; cognitive science of religion; and immigration.




How to Cite

Cresswell, J. (2021). On the Aesthetics of Self Expression: Technological Milieu and Threats to the Future of Theoretical Psychology. International Review of Theoretical Psychologies, 1(1). https://doi.org/10.7146/irtp.v1i1.127082