Read e-book online A Critical History of Schizophrenia PDF

By Kieran McNally

ISBN-10: 1137456817

ISBN-13: 9781137456816

ISBN-10: 1349552267

ISBN-13: 9781349552269

Schizophrenia was once twentieth century psychiatry's arch suggestion of insanity. but for many of that century it used to be either tricky and contentious. This background explores schizophrenia's old instability through topics comparable to indicators, definition, class and anti-psychiatry. In doing so, it opens up new methods of figuring out twentieth century madness.

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Extra info for A Critical History of Schizophrenia

Example text

Finally, in this list of charted controversy, he reminded readers of the sticky question, as to whether definitions apply to things, words, or concepts (ibid). No definition then will capture the variety of meaning possessed by schizophrenia at a given time. Nevertheless, we can examine what is included in a given definition and collate these with other definitions in a chronological manner. In doing so, we improve our theoretical understanding of changes in schizophrenia conceptualisation. We also improve our understanding of its complex ontological nature and of the ontogenesis of what would become known as operational definitions.

G. Crookshank (1930) would cast Don Quixote as a ‘flat schizoid’. And Paul C. Squires, in the Psychoanalytic Review, would see Fyodor Dostoevsky’s fictional murderer Raskolnikov as schizophrenic. He argued that the name Raskolnikov was in itself of the greatest psychological significance. For Squires (1937) it meant a dissenter, split off, in a state of schism, schizophrenic. Similarly, Aldo Calanca (1974) would query Sartre’s Antoine Roquentin (Nausea) as a case of simple schizophrenia. Other disciplines would do the same as twentieth-century society universalised its latest concept of madness.

A Brill would introduce the term in the American Journal of Insanity, again casting schizophrenia as a synonym to dementia praecox. He did this with little elaboration. But he did thank Bleuler for his optimism. He also thanked him for repudiating the meaningless term dementia praecox, which was neither ‘a dementia nor a praecox’ (Brill, 1909, p. 69). E. Southard (1910) would, in passing, briefly parrot Bleuler’s definition: tearing up or splitting of the psychic functions (Zerreißung oder Spaltung der psychischen Funktionen).

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A Critical History of Schizophrenia by Kieran McNally


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