Orestes and democracy
This chapter proposes a developmental sequence for the individual. It begins in infancy with the state of extreme helplessness that tyrannizes parents and family, with an ensuing attempt to master that internal helplessness through games such as Freud’s fort-da observations. The chapter discusses the sociologist Anthony Giddens who envisaged a family model of democracy, arguing that the best model of democracy might resemble the best democratic family. It shows how a democratic polity can be enraptured by a family in power; for instance, in the USA the Kennedy and Bush families, the Gandhis in India, even the Hussein family in Iraq. The chapter looks at the family system as the initial template for the child’s experience and education in democracy, though experience and outcome of this process will diverge according to the kind of family one emerges from. It contends that sibling relations are not independent factors; they exert their influence in the context of the overarching parental relations.