Tesse and Moshe Lang, Rene Gordon, North Balwyn, 1986, paperback, 169 pages.
Sub titled “and other stories of a family therapist”, this book contains a fascinating collection of tales varying in length from a few pages to less than half a page. They demonstrate the authors’ finely honed ability to appreciate the complex shades of emotion that make up human experience.
At one level they comprise a delightful commentary on Life’s ironies presented in a way that can be enjoyed by casual dipping when opportunity presents. At another level they challenge our minds to explore the deeper significance of the experiences described, to share or develop a therapeutic insight.
It is just about impossible to review a book like this and at the same time to resist the temptation to mention a particular piece. Here is one that made me laugh. After describing his enjoyment of a soprano’s superb singing and how it was completely ruined by his wife drawing his attention to a previously unheard noisy cricket, Moshe wryly remarks, “Communication in general and marital communication in particular is not always what it’s cracked up to be.” Not an example requiring great insight perhaps, but for me capturing the ambivalence which is part of an intimate relationship in a very funny way.
In summary, buy it. You won’t be sorry.
Review by Bill Mettyear, M.G.C. of S.A.
Mettyear, B. (1987). Corrupting the Young and Other Stories of a Family Therapist. Australian Association of Marriage and Family Counsellors Newsletter, No 26, 20.