Charity Cain is a forward, uncontrite woman who embodies, perhaps, the worst of English clichés. She’s snobby, and bookish in ways that only encourage her to lord it over others. She holds herself in high regard; but that self-respect transfers on to those who manage to come under her good graces. She truly loves those she loves, and wholly trusts those whom earn her trust. The one thing Charity is not is cruel. Her words may be sharp and her wit biting, but there isn’t a cruel bone in her body.
- Married her ex-husband at 19. They were together for 3 years. He was also 15 years older than she was!
- She attended Law School but rather than getting a job afterward, she went back to Graduate school for a Masters in Psychology.
- She met her ex-wife at 28 and they were together for almost 2 years. They divorced shortly after Charity graduated with her PsyD. She was 2 years younger than Charity.
Sluggishly and with a sigh, Charity accepted the raised hand and the question that followed it. “Yes, random student in my classroom?”
“Dr. Cain, why did Freud believe the content of the unconscious was harmful to the individual?”
She took off her glasses in the same way she always did before embarrassing a student: in a fashion that was seductive, yet detached. The eyeglasses hung down her chest by a silver chain. Then, she wrung her hands with finality before walking around the desk at the head of the large classroom. Charity considered the young man’s question, or feigned consideration, before speaking.
“If I may, allow me to respond to that question with one of my own: What fascinates you more? Why a man believes what he does, or the thing that he believes? Having written my share of literature on Sigmund Freud, I can offer only the following,” she turned towards the class as if to address the entire room. “Why Freud, or any of the individuals we have, are, and will be researching in this class, believe what they believed or thought what they thunk,” the last word carried a sarcastic, and almost Southern twang to it, “Is and shall not be of any relevance to you in this course. We are interested in what we ourselves, and others, can and have surmised based on the study of these theories and hypothesis. What do these beliefs means to us? Are they relevant? How have they impacted the course of humanities – and how far has the reach of Freud’s Dream Theory spread? The rigors of scientific study revolve around causation and correlation, not in the study of why Freud thought all men wish to sleep with their mothers and commit patricide. We study the theory, not the premise which inspired it.”
Most of her class thought that that would be the end of the conversation. Evidently, the student who spurred Charity into giving the response didn’t agree.
“Well, certainly you can concede that his clinical experience and the train of thought behind his theories warrants consideration…” the student said, weakly but with obvious protest.
Charity cut him off. “Certainly I must do no such thing. The only thing I can and shall concede is that why he thought anything will not be a topic my classroom spends another moment provoking a discourse on. Now if you don’t mind, I would very much enjoy opening the floor to questions that you all will actually be tested on.”