Alienism is an old term used in pathology and it means the study and treatment of mental diseases. I read that in an old encyclopedia. After the definition it says, See Insanity. I was astounded. Even if Alienism isn’t used today to define the field of mental health, (I have no idea if it is, I think I would have heard it,) it is interesting that alienism was the word the professionals chose.
Feeling alienated is so common, we were taught about it in college. It is considered a common way to reach people through advertising, public relations, political campaigns, etc. It comes into play in the “jump on the band wagon,” strategy. The threat of being alienated is a great fear in the human psyche. Religions use it too, “join us or we will ostracize you.” A friend of mine was “ostracized,” she said that tactic, “works.”
I am taking the time to write about it because in today’s world of 2016 politics, we are already being played upon with tactics that are geared to manipulate us by making us feel alienated. Don’t fall for it. We all feel alienated from time to time, some of us, every day. It’s normal.
Suellen Ocean is the author of the Civil War Era romance, Blue Violet. Available here: