Chapter 2: Primitive Remedies and Their Defects

1. What does Alexander mean by ‘physical-culture’? By physical culture?

2. Upon what is the whole theory of the ‘physical-culture’ school based?

3. What is the major premise of the ‘physical-culture’ school?

4. In what way(s) does John Doe’s `physical-culture’ cure not possess the elements of permanence?

5. What is John Doe in truth suffering from?

6. What does John Doe hope will happen merely by performing certain physical exercises and why is his hope a false one?

7. How does Alexander characterize ‘relaxation’ as then currently practiced?

8. What is his description of what relaxation really means?

9. What is the wrong assumption the theory of relaxation makes?

10. What are the consequences of following either the rest cure orrelaxation therapy?

11. What are 2 faults Alexander cites in conjunction with deep breathing?

12. What are the 3 remedies Alexander cites in this chapter that have been proposed as palliatives for the degeneration of humankind?

13. What are the stages of human development Alexander cites at the end of the chapter?

Thought Question

1. Of the three remedies Alexander cites in this chapter, deep breathing is considered the least harmful–“a modification in the right direction.” Why does he give deep breathing better marks than the rest cure or ‘physical culture’ exercises? Do you feel that his own experience of solving his vocal problems inclined him toward placing more importance on breathing?