Monday, December 17, 2012

Media Moment: American Horror Story

I was unable to find a clip because the season is currently on television, but in Season 2, Episode 4 of American Horror Story: Asylum, there is a scene where Dr. Thredson (played by Zachary Quinto), a psychiatrist at Briarcliff Manor Mental Hospital, puts a lesbian patient (Lana Winters, played by Sarah Paulson) through aversion therapy because she is a lesbian.

The scene was very odd because Dr. Thredson was very gentle and almost nurturing toward his patient during this scene.  Lana Winters is forced to look at photos of nude men while putting her hands down her pants in order to trigger some kind of sexual reaction.  They bring in a male subject, where Lana is asked to touch him.  She can’t do it, and in between all of these activities she is literally vomiting her guts out in a metal garbage pail. 

What struck me about this is that I never knew this actually existed in medicine at one point in time.  To watch this scene alone was a very difficult thing to do because it was so awkward and intense, but actually realizing that at one point homosexuality was considered at one point to be like a disease that one can be cured from, was mind-blowing. 

The following are articles from both Quinto and Paulson about what it was like shooting that scene. 

I also found this blog where people were talking about the episode.

What I also found shocking was that, in some research I did, aversion therapy to treat homosexuality wasn’t declared a dangerous practice (that didn’t even work) until 1994.  That wasn’t very long ago.  Does this fact surprise any of you?  

No comments:

Post a Comment