Oprah Picks Tolstoy's Anna Karenina for Oprah's Book Club - Nixes Flix in Favor of Classics.

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Dr. Allison Conner, a New York psychologist provides her unique perspective on Oprah's selection of Tolstoy's Anna Karenina for the Oprah book club.

Forget Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkhaban. Ignore the headlines about prisoner abuse in Iraq. Forget Fantasia, Clay Aiken and American Idol. It's time for Anna Karenina, Oprah says so, selecting a classic.

"Oprah has an uncanny sense for detecting the American zeitgeist," states Dr. Allison Conner, a New York psychologist. "It's a good time to read -- or reread -- Tolstoy's Anna Karenina -- this summer's antidote for presidential election posturing, and the stresses of wartime and terrorism."

"There's nothing wrong with escapism and entertainment," notes Dr. Conner. "But there's more to life than 'The Day After Tomorrow.' Oprah knows that Shrek 2, Spiderman 2, Harry Potter 3 and the Chronicles of Riddick are the literary equivalent of the Atkins Diet, the Weight Watchers Lifestyle Diet or the South Beach Diet. They won't nourish your mind or your soul."

Dr. Conner notes that her experience treating patients proves Tolstoy's wisdom: "All happy families resemble each other, but each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." Additional perspectives on the book selection are available on Dr Conner's site, http://www.cognitive-therapy-associates.com/oprah-anna-karenina.php

Anna Karenina -- Oprah's current pick for Oprah's Book Club -- isn't typical beach reading. It's the story of a woman in a bad marriage, a passionate woman who has no outlets and no options. When she chooses to leave her husband for her lover, she's outcast by society. Today, high profile divorces still fascinate and thrill the public -- the lives, loves, indiscretions and questionable behavior of the rich and famous are on constant display. No affair remains secret. From Scott Peterson to Donald Trump, high-profile crimes, divorces and indiscretions are splashed on the front page of the tabloids. Perhaps Anna Karenina is more relevant than we originally would think. Oprah’s got our number.

While Anna Karenina, in her emotional pain and turmoil, had absolutely no one to turn to for help, Dr. Conner aptly points out, "Today we have professionals who can assist someone going through emotional turmoil and making one bad decision after another." Would therapy have saved Anna Karenina from herself before Tolstoy had a chance to create her? Perhaps. "Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is based on proven methods that help patients identify thoughts, attitudes and behaviors that cause them to derail their lives repeatedly."

To interview Dr. Allison Conner, regarding cognitive behavioral therapy or any other psychological issues, call (212) 258-2577, or e-mail aconner@aconner.com. http://www.cognitive-therapy-associates.com.

Also, looking to write a story on relationships and dating? Check out Dr. Conner's “Top 10 Relationship Wreakers” http://www.cognitive-therapy-associates.com/top-ten-relationship-wreckers.php and “Top 10 Dating Mistakes” http://www.cognitive-therapy-associates.com/top-ten-dating-mistakes.php


Allison Conner, Psy.D. (212) 258-2577 aconner@aconner.com

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Allison Conner