How did people in ancient times, middle ages and renaissance managed to not throw up or get PTSD? Melee combat was way more gruesome than in the movies as the bones show (pic related is from Battle of Towton) and I imagine seeing that sort of shit would take some toll on soldiers psyche.
They probably all had PTSD.
They were also probably abused as children according to our definition of child abuse.
They were harder, brutal people because you had to be hard and brutal to live. We've since been able to live a softer, gentler life.
Civilization can collapse again, after all.
Soldiers were much tougher given the brutal nature of how wars were fought back then. I'm sure they had their share of stress, but the mentality was you either man up fast or die faster.
There were no pussies back then, life was hard.
You didnt even need to be a soldier to end up traumatised back then, if they caught a criminal in you town they would probably torture and execute him/her in an extremely gruesome way at the market, if you were a woman (or a child for the matter) you would most probably be raped in the slightiest scenario of unrest/war, it was fucked up.
They were exposed to grisly shit on a constant basis - war, famine, disease, etc. That, and their religious beliefs possibly framed the value of human life in a different way. To a devoutly religious person, mortal death and suffering may seem pointless given the ephemeral nature of human existence, so why get worked up over the prospect of death?
Anxiety and PTSD probably nonetheless existed. I would just suspect that they were blunted by the harshness that people had to deal with from a very early age.
William, Viscount Beaumont apparently suffered from mental illness later in life, possibly from the various battles he was in.
Hotspur in Shakespeare's Henry IV part 1 clearly has what we would term PTSD, based on his wife's description.
O, my good lord, why are you thus alone?
For what offence have I this fortnight been
A banish'd woman from my Harry's bed?
Tell me, sweet lord, what is't that takes from thee
Thy stomach, pleasure and thy golden sleep?
Why dost thou bend thine eyes upon the earth,
And start so often when thou sit'st alone?
Why hast thou lost the fresh blood in thy cheeks;
And given my treasures and my rights of thee
To thick-eyed musing and cursed melancholy?
In thy faint slumbers I by thee have watch'd,
And heard thee murmur tales of iron wars;
Speak terms of manage to thy bounding steed;
Cry 'Courage! to the field!' And thou hast talk'd
Of sallies and retires, of trenches, tents,
Of palisadoes, frontiers, parapets,
Of basilisks, of cannon, culverin,
Of prisoners' ransom and of soldiers slain,
And all the currents of a heady fight.
Thy spirit within thee hath been so at war
And thus hath so bestirr'd thee in thy sleep,
That beads of sweat have stood upon thy brow
Like bubbles in a late-disturbed stream;
And in thy face strange motions have appear'd,
Such as we see when men restrain their breath
On some great sudden hest. O, what portents are these?
Some heavy business hath my lord in hand,
And I must know it, else he loves me not.
>Hotspur in Shakespeare's Henry IV part 1
By heaven, methinks it were an easy leap
To pluck bright honor from the pale-faced moon,
Or dive into the bottom of the deep,
Where fathom line could never touch the ground,
And pluck up drownèd honor by the locks,
So he that doth redeem her thence might wear
Without corrival all her dignities.
Was there not a hoplite who suffered from blindness at Marathon? I also believe there were two Spartans who suffered from temporary cowardice during a battle and were shamed. One of them threw himself at the enemy in the next battle and died fighting while the other commited suicide.
There has actually been research done on this subject. I remember having read an article which said that people naturally have an inhibition to kill other people - which makes evolutionary sense. However, in certain situations, e.g. when immediately threatened, they kinda blank out and can do horrible things to others without being seriously psychologically affected. This was described in WW1 as "killing frenzy", which for example happened when kids who just recently were in school turned into the types of persons who could split another person's head with a spade.
Snipers on the other hand, who weren't immediately threatened by others, were much more prone to developing PTSD, since they were essentially taking lives of "innocents" who were no threat to them. Regular soldiers were much more likely to get PTSD from being shelled with artillery and seeing their comrades ripped apart in front of them, not so much from killing those who were a threat to them.
Today you can notice a similar pattern when it comes to drone pilots, who supposedly suffer from PTSD too disproportionately, since they tend to follow their targets around for days, look at how they behave, and then at some point end up having to kill them.
desu, you can't really get full fledged PTSD from a battle that lasts several hours no matter how gruesome it might be. You'll obviously remember it for the rest of your life, but it probably won't fundamentally debilitate you.
PTSD or "shell shock" used to be known as is a severe condition that arises from days or weeks of constant stress and danger levels of arousal like those conditions on the Western Front of WW1, where it was not uncommon for entire sections of the line to come under sustained artillery bombardment for two weeks straight before an assault, or the kind of sustained city fighting seen in WW2 in Stalingrad, Leningrad, Berlin, etc.
It stems from physiological breakdown and massive existential stress over a sustained period, and the definition has gotten weaker over time.
I've read it in an interview with Prof. Herfried Münkler from the Humbold University in Berlin in regards to drone warfare (https://www.freitag.de/autoren/jan-pfaff/spieler-ersetzt-kaempfer).
The article itself is longer, but here is the relevant excerpt; taken a bit out of context:
>Der Freitag: In der Begründung des Pentagons, warum Drohnenpiloten Orden bekommen sollen, wird die psychische Belastung betont, der sie ausgeliefert sind. Viele leiden an posttraumatischen Belastungsstörungen.
>Herfried Münkler: Ein Paradox der Drohne ist, dass der Krieg zugleich weiter wegrückt und näher an den Einzelnen herankommt. Es wird ein Feind auf der anderen Seite der Erde getötet – und zugleich lernen Drohnenpiloten ihre Gegner sehr viel besser kennen als jeder Soldat zuvor, weil sie sie wochenlang rund um die Uhr beobachten. Hinzu kommt, dass das Entlastungsmoment fehlt, den man Tötungsrausch nennt.
>Der Freitag: Was ist damit gemeint?
>Herfried Münkler: Es gibt diese Beschreibungen etwa aus dem Ersten Weltkrieg, dass durch die physischen Belastungen des Sturmangriffs und die Todesangst junge Männer, die eben noch auf der Schulbank saßen, plötzlich in der Lage waren, im Grabenkrieg ihrem Gegenüber mit einem Kurzspaten den Kopf zu spalten. Wenn man sich sagen kann: „Entweder der oder ich“, wird man mit so etwas viel leichter fertig, als wenn man etwa als Scharfschütze auf 1.000 Meter einen Engländer erschießt, der einen gar nicht bedroht hat. Ähnlich ist das für Drohnenpiloten.
The translation would be something like this:
>Der Freitag: The Pentagon motivates the military honours for drone pilots due to the psychological stress they're under. Many suffer from PTSD.
>Herfried Münkler: The Paradox of the drone is that war is simultaneously moving away and getting closer to the individual. An enemy on the other side of the earth is killed - at the same time the drone pilots get to know their enemies better than any soldier did before, because they monitor them around the clock and over weeks. Also, the element of relief, that is the "killing frenzy" is missing.
>Der Freitag: What is meant by that?
>Herfried Münkler: There are accounts from WW1 that due to the physical stresses of the assault and the fear of death, the young men, who only moments ago sat in school, became capable of splitting the heads of their enemies in the trench battles with their spades. When it's a situation of "It's you or me", then it becomes a lot easier to deal with it than it is for a sniper for example who finds himself having to shoot an Englishman from 1000m away who's not even an immediate threat to him. It's similar for drone pilots.
'PTSD' is a modern medical term that has only been popularized recently, with the american wars in the middle east. Back then they referred to it as 'fatigue' or 'stress' or just plain 'cowardice'
They probably got PTSD from childhood.
These ancient people killed animals all day.
Infanticide was very common on top of high mortality rates
Beating children was seen as good for them.
Ass rape was probably common too. I can't imagine what a hairy mess ancient greek woman was, but you might consider a greased up shota too.
killing animals is nowhere near the same especially considering they were killing pigs and chickens for food it's not like their parents went ''KILL YOUR PUPPY BILLY JUST FUCKING DO IT''
>Ancient people didn't kill animals all that much. Most people weren't wealthy enough for that, and didnt have the time to be constantly hunting
Certain animals were clearly accessible by richfaggots
But you bet ancient peeps killed chickens, rodents, and fish all the time.
They did, it's been referred to as 'battle fatigue' in some cases, but older warfare was probably easier on the psyche that modern warfare is. One of the key factors here is stress - it's good in limited amounts, but when you're stressed for hours and hours or even days without an end then it takes a toll on your body and psyche.
Not being able to sleep for days due to mortar fire and constantly fearing for your life in another gas attack is harder than witnessing a gruesome melee battle, I'd imagine. So is patrolling Afghanistan, always being worried that the next footstep you take is going to land on a mine and blow off your legs, or that one of the locals is going to shoot you and your squadmates. PTSD doesn't happen because 'people are fucking pussies'.
They did. Achilles throwing his hissy fit at the gates of Troy is probably an example of it.
But in general, I'd say the reasons why it wasn't that pronounced are as follows. People who took part in warfare professionally were conditioned since birth to kill other people. Engagements lasted for a few days at most, so you had plenty of time to regain mental balance. And you could tell when you were going to be fighting in advance, rather than the constant sense of danger in modern warfare. It was much more contextualized and ritualized, with religious and cultural rituals, allowing you to distance yourself from the stuff that you did.
The situation >>582736 talks about might also be due to the fact that drone pilots spend like 10 hours a day killing people, and later they punch out their card and go straight back home to their families. It's bound to drive you crazy.
Also, ancient and medieval warfare was less bloody during the actual fighting. I recall reading that the casualties during the engagement itself were about 5% on both sides, until one side broke and ran. It was then ridden down by cavalry resulting in most of casualties on the losing side. Events like Cannae, Crecy etc are more of an exception than the norm.
Ancient battles were extremely rare and, more often than not, large standing armies were used as a deterrence to actual bloodshed. When open field battles did occur they were extremely violent, yes, but also decisive and rarely protracted.
Understanding that PTSD seems to occur not from single traumatic events, but their repetition, especially so when the individual is constantly moving back and forth from a high stress environment to one he deems safe. i.e. patrolling Iraqi roads for IEDs by day and returning to the relative safety of the base at night.
Either way, sieges are how pre-modern war was fought, not field battles. Living under a protracted siege would probably be a much bigger catalyst for PTSD.
Read "On Killing"
Many more traditional societies had war rituals that absolved the warriors involved in combat, like knighthoods, parades, dances, codes of honor, religious rites, etc.
Tickertape parades really did help.
Arab Historians of the Crusades (Berkeley: Univ. of Calif, 1969). Usamah, passages 100-101 (pp. 77-78).
Salim was wearing a loincloth to serve as BVDs; the knight -- in keeping with a much later stereotype about the French -- wore nothing of the sort. Feeling perhaps that there should be no secrets in a bathhouse, the knight (quite rudely) pulled off Salim's loincloth, and discovered that his nether regions were shaved. I'll let Usamah tell the story from there:
"Salim!" he exclaimed. I came toward him and he pointed to that part of me. "Salim! It's magnificent! You shall certainly do the same for me!" And he lay down flat on his back. His hair there was as long as his beard. I shaved him, and when he had felt the place with his hand and found it agreeably smooth he said:
"Salim, you must certainly do the same for my Dama." In their language Dama means lady, or wife. He sent his valet to fetch his wife, and when they arrived and the valet had brought her in, she lay down on her back, and he said to me: "Do to her what you did to me." So I shaved her pubic hair, while her husband stood by watching me. Then he thanked me and paid me for my services.
>Herodotus' account of the Athenian spear carrier Epizelus' psychogenic mutism following the Marathon Wars is usually cited as the first documented account of post-traumatic stress disorders in historical literature. This paper describes much earlier accounts of post combat disorders that were recorded as occurring in Mesopotamia (present day Iraq) during the Assyrian dynasty (1300-609 BC). The descriptions in this paper include many symptoms of what we would now identify in current diagnostic classification systems as post-traumatic stress disorders; including flashbacks, sleep disturbance and low mood. The Mesopotamians explain the disorder in terms of spirit affliction; the spirit of those enemies whom the patient had killed during battle causing the symptoms.
there's something to that, the rate of what we would consider PTSD was much higher among civil war soldiers who spent time in prisoner of war camps (and were exposed to prolonged periods of stress and danger) than those who weren't. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/ptsd-civil-wars-hidden-legacy-180953652/?no-ist
Our current times have been peaceful for most of the western world and most of the developed east. Even the developing world have been relatively peaceful and comfortable compared to couple hundred years ago. However that changes when the reality of war approaches. Our peaceful society is not used to the realities of war. Countless death, rapes, destruction, trauma, violent fights, fucks with the workings of the brain. Imagine being bed ridden for 20 years and then suddenly forced to run 20 miles. This is what war is in current year.
Back in the past, society was harsh, death/disease/short lifespan were common. Conflicts arose often due to lack of strong public governance and control. The lives back then were harsh and mentally hardened you for such realities. However even so, war is very brutal and very violent. Its one of the extremes of the world even back then. As such, there would still be many who won't adapt to civilian life after the war. Now instead of 20 years of bed ridden man asked to run 20 miles, it would be 5 years of bed ridden man asked to run 50 miles.
Adrenaline is a powerful drug. War is a spectacle.
Many, if not most, people find killing fun and enjoyable. Try Grossman On Killing, and Joanna Bourke Intimate History of Killing: Face to Face killing in the 20th century
Two of the most important books in "killology"
>if they caught a criminal in you town they would probably torture and execute him/her in an extremely gruesome way at the market, if you were a woman (or a child for the matter) you would most probably be raped in the slightiest scenario of unrest/war, it was fucked up.
then why do people always enjoy beheadings ?
Look up the classical greek play Ajax and how the protagonist has delusions that result in him reacting violently which ultimately result in him killing himself
also lots of bible verses allude to dealing with ptsd
great book. some flaws, but overall a great book.
>not throw up
Old societies had more firsthand exposure to death.
Every winter in europe, you're either killing an old pig, killing an old cow, killing a chicken or two, ass-blasting wolves that attack your shit-pit of a hut, or else grandpa's dying of plague, a stroke, old age or what have you.
You're innately experienced with death, be it of animals, elders or infants.
They did. berserkers did all kinds of crazy shit when they'd try to reintegrate into normal life...like flipping out and going on rampages rambo style.
It's so common nowadays because our soldiers spend 6-14 months under constant stress.
I've got a buddy who's in his early 20's with grey hair; he can't go into crowded stores, traffic, or any other place with lots of people and noise without getting super pissed off and ruining the night.
They didn't get ptsd because they were a kinder people who didn't worship violence abd death like people do today. When they went to war and killed other people it was for a reason better than serving oil and resource hungry corporations. Killing another person didn't have the hype attached to it, death was a natural part of life, not this grandiose thing where people had to have massive funerals and talk about it for weeks on end while garnering sympathy. Plus they didn't have explosives.
>a real condition rather than a random amalgamation of symptoms and disorders that the authors of the DSM are too stupid to segregate properly
IIRC, according to Herodotos the one who got back into fighting survived the coming battle and was under consideration for some kind of reward for courage in battle. He didn't recieve it however as the judges finally came to the conclusion that he had been foolhardy for the sake of personal redemption.
>You're innately experienced with death, be it of animals, elders or infants.
This, and you yourself didn't reasonably expect to live long either. You had a 50% chance of dying as a child and then 35-40 was old age if you made adulthood.
This is just my theory, but before industrialization, 90% of people lived in the countryside and raised their own food. Raising your own food frequently involves slaughtering animals. If you've never done it before it can be pretty traumatizing, but if you were brought up doing that you would have no more qualms about it than buying a rotisserie chicken at the grocery store. People back then were fond of bloodsports like bear baiting and cockfighting that seem brutal and primitive to modern audiences.
People had a closer and more intimate relationship with life and death than we do today. They understood that underneath skin lay blood, muscle, fat, tissue, etc. and that things screamed when they were being killed. While there are accounts of soldiers who did exhibit ptsd-like symptoms many of these people were knights or nobles who had lacked the same degree of actual killing experience that many commoners had.
PTSD is a phenomenon observed in modern peoples who live for extended periods within combat zones; ergo, speculating about similar psychological traumas among historical peoples is pretty much moot. Not only were the people of antiquity much different than today's, but warfare was also of a character extremely distant from that which we presently know.
If it helps though, OP, ancient people would probably seem extremely violent and hardassed today, since they were all beat as children and survived through lifestyles that impute incredible resolve.
You may not believe this, but pretty much every boy I grew up with had killed forest critters for shits-and-giggles before, and we all turned out relatively normal. Far from the domain of only serial killers, it's really just a typical rite of passage amid prepubescent suburban ennui; empathy for animals is culturally learned, and not always to the same degree.
On top of that, it's pretty unexpected. I always thought the chief element of PTSD was caused by the suddenness of hostilities, with your buddy's head exploding or your humvee blowing up in a split second, with no idea where it came from. That certainly would've been a lesser factor in pre-gunpowder warfare. People don't get PTSD from fistfights.
I didn't say it would make you a killer, I'm saying that if you killed animals on a regular basis for food for most of your life you would be a bit numbed to seeing blood and guts and how living things respond to being killed.
you're right, that poster was wrong to use the term PTSD. He could've just said that people back then were less soft-hearted and less shocked by violence than most modern westerners.
Battlefields were still hellish, but soldiers didn't constantly clash for hours and hours and hours straight on the front lines in a Total War-esque melee. Ancient evidence (I'll find the source if requested) suggests that battles consisted more of a series of charges, withdrawing, and charging again. Still not a fun situation.
He was asking why medieval people didn't get ptsd as much compared to modern combat when medieval combat was so gruesome, and I said modern combat is even more gruesome. Therefore relevance.
"It is difficult to grasp how people once felt toward others, especially those beyond the charmed circle of close kin and friends. Such feelings went beyond mere indifference. Clark (2007) describes the former popularity in England of blood sports and other forms of exhibitionist violence (cock fighting, bear and bull baiting, public executions). Yes, most normal people used to crave the sight of blood and suffering."
genetic pacification through the "civilizing" process blunts bloodlust and probably reduces psychological capacity to handle violent trauma.
>war was more gruesome
When did this meme start? War continually becomes more "gruesome" as technology developed. Now instead of someone's face getting split open by a mace your buddy gets atomised from miles off.
PTSD has always been a thing, we just recently defined it and put a name to it. It's like when people ask "How come people didn't die of cancer pre-19th century" or "Why are there more cases of autism now than a few decades ago?"
"Shellshocked" is the classic term for someone with PTSD
>35-40 was old age if you made adulthood
Oh Jesus fuck, not this shit again.
Let's say you've got a population where every second newborn dies immediately and every other newborn lives until they're 60. Your average life expectancy is now 30 years, but that doesn't mean that nobody gets older than that.
There were old people back then, many historical figures lived beyond 40 years. And if you were a monk in medieval Europe, with a stress-free, secluded life and a steady food supply I see no reason why you shouldn't reach more than 60 years of age.
>You should try slaughtering a pig with a knife and let me know how you feel afterwards. Just because you know where your food comes from doesn't mean you'd be unphased if you did it yourself.
Ummm... we do that in the countryside before Christmas here in Romania?
3 guys hold the pig while the other stabs him in the carotid. Then he bleeds to death. Then you apply fire to the corpse.
Unlike today's soft, faggoty, western urbanites, people in the past were quite used to killing and butchering living things, as they did that damn near every day for food.
Be it a chicken, a goat, a sheep, lamb, cow, whatever, they slit its throat or cut the head off, often times collecting the blood that flowed for use later, then they skinned it, and butchered it, trying to use every part of the animal they could. People were used to killing and butchering, as they had been doing it since they were a kid. The only people that regularly do this today are 3rd worlders and those westerners fortunate enough not to be living in one of the urban shit holes.
Butchering people is little different.
Soldiers did have problems as a result of battle, though, and there were quite a few that would experience a moment of terror, from time to time, whenever they heard a clash of metal on metal that would remind them of their experience on the line.
>corporal punishment is actually constructive when implemented correctly and conservatively
This is true.
Corporal punishment is simply positive punishment, which Skinner, long ago, proved to be an effective approach to reducing the likelihood of any given behavior.
We were all essentially "programmed" at birth to learn using this approach, as it is simply pain avoidance. When we exhibit the behavior of touching something red hot, we get burned, and this positive punishment reduces the likelihood that we'll perform that behavior again.
It's only been recently, since the leftists managed to fully infiltrate and corrupt academia, that positive punishment has been attacked as an ineffective approach to modifying behavior, especially when it comes to children.
You'll have to find them yourself, anon. I've just ran into various examples over the years reading about, and researching, various ancient Greek and Roman warfare.
It's not something that was frequently talked about, and usually you'll just catch a sentence about how after "X" battle, "Y" soldier was never the same, and would get violent or shake when hearing / smelling / whatever would remind him of said battle.
You can stomach a lot of shit when you're accustomed to it, ask any doctor. It's not horrific sights that creates PTSD, PTSD or war trauma mainly comes from being exposed too long to combat stress and the front line, continuously without rotation.
Ancient battles didn't last long, they consisted of holding formation and attempting to rout the enemy... and took long breaks for eating, pissing, sleeping & whatnot.
Some more exposed armies would definitely have been under severe stress, but they often faced extinction/death of everything they knew as the alternative.
What about the era that combined explosions and hand to hand combats (16th to 19th century)
Look at the Napoleonic Wars for exemple, your average action was violent bayonet and saber melee while being harassed by heavy artillery
No, I think he is talking about multi-dimensional phase shifting. It was under extreme duress that the first phased photon torpedo came into being, and its inventor was a rancher, so some hypothesize Schwarzchild was just being a vegetarian when his pop told him to go kill the pig and eat it.
City dwellers of today has likely never seen a farm animal in their life let alone actually participating in slaughter of cattle, hunting and/or skinning.
People who did that regularly would not be shy at the sight of blood.