La sospensione della incredulità. La narrazione cinematografica come strumento clinico e didattico

Giorgio Villa


The human being is able to enjoy a show, but also a text or a poem, because he perceives it as a representation. This means that, within it, there must be a kind of suspension that, S. T. Coleridge in 1817 defined as: “willing suspension of disbelief”. It means that “if a writer could infuse a ‘human interest and a semblance of truth’ into a fantastic tale, the reader would suspend judgment concerning the implausibility of the narrative”. In every storytelling and particularly in Cinema the suspension is very intense, untill users are completely absorbed in a kind of temporal suspension, recovering from it little by little. Working in a therapeutic community, relations between staff and users are not so usual to be observed as in other structures. In this case history, the staff, one evening per month identifies a course of study related to the general theme of “Cinema and psychosis”. In recent years it has taken into a vision hundreds of film that year after year, focused on: the induction of madness, the borderline pathology, incest, family pathology, the evolutionary breakdown, trauma and dissociation, paranoia and its representations, schizophrenia (residual and catatonic form), schizophrenia (disorganized and paranoid form), suicide in the cinema.


Cinema; psychosis; therapeutic communities; burn out; suspension of disbelief

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