I spoke with my professor today and this is the feedback she gave me: -The intro

I spoke with my professor today and this is the feedback she gave me:
-The introduction is too general. In the introduction you need to layout how you are putting Freud, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King together. So why is Freud skeptical about religion? What does this have to do with the question of narrative and memory? In what wats is Freud’s theory evidenced in Malcolm X and Martin Luther King.
-Basically, if the essay is going to be about the topic of narrative and memory, the introduction needs to address it more directly. Freud is skeptic about religion, but what does that have to say about the function of religion? Religion is a way of making suffering meaningful and uses explanations of suffering to make sense of things in the presence.
-Religion is a way of offering rational responses to the experience of suffering. What Freud is saying is that religion masks the condition of suffering. That Religion doesn’t allow people to confront the realities of the world, and instead presents the world as a place full of divine order, and offers consolation for the suffering, but it is not a way of confronting and making things better. So, you need to say something more specific about how Freud’s critic of religion addresses the issue of the relationship between religion and suffering.
-Freud is saying that religion is a response to trauma. For Freud religion is a way of responding to our fears of death and tragedies because in the end we are going to heaven. Then you have Malcolm X and Martin Luther King who both see religion as a way of responding to suffering. Both Malcolm X and King see Christianity as having a relationship with suffering, and Malcolm X sees the nation of Islam as giving him a way of understanding suffering and trying to overcome it. So, you want to look at how does Freud theory applicable in these situations and how it is not. Are there ways Malcolm X and King’s relationship to religion defying what Freud is saying?
-So you want your introduction to get more specific of how things are getting into conversation. You want to put Freud’s critique, Malcolm X critical complex relationship with religion, King’s embrace of religion in conversation with the specific topic of narrative and memory. Specifically, what does religion have to do with the experience of suffering? How does religion respond to suffering?
That was the feedback she gave regarding the introduction and main content. The next piece of feedback has to do with the body of the essay:
-Then as you go through Freud, you want to then address his theory specifically in relationship to the question about religion and suffering and how it is meaningful.
-The last sentence “Freud’s main argument is that religion is only an illusion that has eclipsed people’s realities and led them to a sense of false belief” I would connect this specifically to the question about how religion attempts to provide this divine meaning of people’s experiences as it eclipses reality. Basically, how it keeps people from really being able to confront the reality of suffering in this world. So again, I would take what you are saying about Freud and then apply it specifically to the topic at hand.
-Then as you talk about Malcolm X again, you can go into Malcolm X’s skepticism. I like this idea of starting with Freud who is rejecting religion, then moving to Malcolm X who is rejecting one religion and embracing another, and then turn to king who is not critical of religion at all. I like moving from most critical to the most embracing. But again, you have to take thar critique and address it directly to the topic.
-For instance, Malcolm X is critical of Christianity in America because he sees it as having justified and supported the suffering of Black Americans by justifying slavery. Malcolm X would even say that Christianity even masks the realities of that suffering by convincing people that they were suffering because they were inheritably evil, and how God is white. Malcolm X is critical of religion in that sense but at the same time uses religion, the nation of Islam, to confront the realities of suffering. So, there he follows Freud in his critique of religion as eclipsing people’s reality, not blinding people from the reality of their experience, and yet he doesn’t stop there. He turns to other religious traditions because he sees religion as having the potential to unmask and help him confront the reality of his suffering.
-Then talk about how King is using religion and how he is not rejecting it at all, but is actually seeing religion as the way to suffer righteously for the cause and address suffering to bring chage. So, King in a way is the complete reversal of Freud’s theory. While Freud thinks that you can’t use religion to think critically and creatively (Religion is always an obstacle for change), King is using religion precisely to make change happen. To bring an end to the suffering, which Freud thinks its not possible.
-I think that the essay needs to address, from the introduction and throughout the whole body, the topic of narrative and memory more directly. Talk about Freud’s critique of religion but talk specifically about what he is saying about the way religion masks suffering by offering and explanation for that suffering. God’s plan.
-Your points are very good, but you have to anchor them to the specific question about religion’s relationship with suffering. Remember that for Freud, religion masks suffering, and Malcolm X agrees with Christianity, but then uses another religion to try and reveal what us happening. Then King says Christianity in its eesence is his vehicle for change, because it allows us to suffer for the cause as protestors almost like Martyrs. Try to bring on change through righteous redemptive suffering.
-Go through the essay and see the ways you can anchor the more general points you are making in the specific question of suffering.
This was the feedback given by the professor

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