He denied the allegation but was found guilty of liaising with a young Oriental female student and awarding her grades beyond her ability and performance. He is ordered to get psychiatric help, which he does, from his old school colleague, Dr. Brask treats Tristram for some time with medication, but one night their session continues and develops into a full expose of Tristram's affairs and demise, including the loss of his family. The story revolves around that night when Tristram opens, one after another, the sordid details of some of his affairs, and his inability to control himself when it came to Oriental women.
Brask is full of sympathy but does not treat Tristram compassionately. He wants Tristam to reason his way through the corridors of his seduction and arrive at his own acknowledgment regarding his behavior and that of his women companions. Basically, Tristram sees the Oriental woman as brazenly and blatantly seductive - in her eyes, her hair, her figure and voice, her movements - and there was no resistance to such seduction. Brask has to lead Tristam to the realization that he, Tristram, was the seducer.
The women were just normal girls caught in the phantasmagoria of his debauched imagination and inability to relate to them as normal human beings. Tristram denies this, saying they seduced him with a type of magic, weaved by Oriental women over Western men - or at least on him. One by one Tristram relates his encounters and demonstrates his own incapacity for love, only for sensation. Finally he maintains, if it was his problem, it was his illness, his anxiety, which took away his reason and disabled him to relate normally.
But he goes further and says that people do not act on reason, that most actions only have the appearance of reason.
In his state of mind he was able to reveal the deceit - the deceit of love, and all endeavours, supposedly based on sound judgment, but really concealing an anarchy of emotions and unconnected thoughts and false reasoning. It was his anxiety that gave him this insight into life, and this insight that lead him to pursue a path of wonton and deleterious philandering.
What he did with Oriental women was live through his anxiety in its most dissociated form: Some forgave him, others did not. All knew he was different and deceitful. Two of his lovers die and the third comes back to deliver to him the ultimate humiliation. About the Author In Peter was born into a working class family in the inner west of Sydney.
His upbringing was on a shoestring, but then that was normal for the times. He often spent his twopence for his bus fare home from school on lollies and preferred to walk and talk to himself. He remembered the first book he read in one day: They couldn't afford to buy books. By the time he had completed primary school he had read Dickens and his favourite acquisition: It introduced him to history and mythology of the ancients.
His first philosophy book was Russell's Problems of Philosophy, read before he was a teenager, and another book: How to be a Freelance Writer took his imagination. He wanted to be a writer. He also ventured into animation spending weekends drawing caricatures. He loved the work of the Australian artist Norman Lindsay, and in his early teen years perfected a technique of copying Lindsay's drawings perfectly. During his teen years he suffered agonizingly with acne and caught pneumonia twice.
By the time he had fully recovered the Americans had landed on the moon, the PLO was hijacking planes and the Vietnam War was in full swing.