M. V. Williams

The Marsh People

THE MARSH PEOPLE published by Victorina Press, is based on an experiment with dogs about  learned helplessness.
It’s a well known experiment conducted by Seligman, in which dogs are kept in wire cages with electrified walls, but are fed at regular intervals. After several weeks, the tops of the cages are removed. One or two of the dogs, seeing freedom, leap out despite slight electric shocks and not knowing how they would be fed, and run away. But most of the dogs stayed where they were – they had become accustomed to being helpless.  This got me thinking….

THE MARSH PEOPLE puts the dogs in charge of the inhabitants, under orders from the Masters in a soulless City where only the basic essentials are present. Then one young man finds himself looking after his neighbour’s orphaned little daughter and decides he’s had enough. Together they leave the City and have to learn to survive out there on the marshy lands around the estuary. All the time the Masters are watching…

I also wanted to show a relationship between a very young girl and a very young man, where he takes responsibility for her and is in a protective role as they leave the City. But she also looks out for him and protects him.

There’s always the tug between control and being controlled, freedom and security, and the choices people make which involve risk.

Having achieved some hard-won security, prosperity and peace, there are always enemies envious of this ready to step in and take advantage.

The book could have ended in a number of different ways, but I feel now it was right to end as it did.

You may also like

Two Poems
The King of Neverwas a poem for our time. (Never mind BREXIT)
Learned Helplessness
THE MARSH PEOPLE – Victorina Press

19 Responses

  1. maureen

    it wouldn’t be bad to have learned helplessness experiment. It will awaken one to the conciousness of being helpless and seek help from appropriate quarters

  2. Oyeyipo Oladele

    The learned helplessness psychology are of great importance. I will definitely live by the learned helplessness theory to make the world great again. Thanks for this lifeguarding post.

  3. Meldred Judith

    The helplessness theory is a bit deep for me to understand. It’s so hard to imagine being okay with something that is not right at all.

  4. Wilson Jake

    This learned helplessness theory is really real life. Talking from a put together experience. Nicely put

  5. Prince

    I know dogs are intelligent but learned helplessness dog experiment, this another wonderful review. I love it. N9ce piece guys

  6. Danielle M

    Sometimes experimenting with learned helplessness theory can be positive because it allows us to be objective, and get to know ourselves in a deeper way. It´s a great opportunity to learn how can we deal with change, frustration, and temporality to know if we can break the cycle or we need to work some more in adopting a stronger and more mature attitude that helps us to face our ideas and fears.

  7. Roy

    Learned helplessness psychology is quite interesting. It’s amazing how it also applies to humans.

  8. Meg W

    There are many learned helplessness examples in our real lives. We just have to look hard enough to spot them.

  9. Patricia

    I am happy to learn about learned helplessness theory. I have never heard of it before.

  10. Oliver

    I think the learned helplessness experiment was cruel to the dogs. I doubt if the same could be done today.

  11. Daphne

    I have heard of the learned helplessness dog experiment before. I just never knew there was a novel based on it.

  12. Teddy

    The seligman learned helplessness is explored deeply in the Marsh People. It’s a stellar piece of work!

  13. Louis

    I don’t know if learned helplessness psychology is a good or a bad thing. I guess it all depends on the outcome.

  14. Shantel

    The Marsh People has some good learned helplessness examples. From it we can infer whether it is good or bad.

  15. Anderson

    What are some applications of learned helplessness theory if any? Like is the theory applied in everyday life?

  16. Storm

    That learned helplessness experiment was very interesting. Kudos to the Scientist behind it.

  17. Sylvia

    I find it amusing how the learned helplessness dog experiment actually also applies to humans. Maybe we aren’t that different from dogs after all lol

  18. Shantel

    Admittedly, it’s my first time hearing about James Elroy Flecker. That notwithstanding, he is already one of my favorite poets.

  19. Anderson

    The old poets live on through the poems they wrote. This is especially true if the poems themselves are relevant even to this day and age.

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