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Ideology and Insanity: Essays on the Psychiatric Dehumanization of Man Paperback – 30 Apr 1991


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Paperback, 30 Apr 1991
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
MORE ESSAYS FROM A PROMINENT ANTI-PSYCHIATRIST 22 Sept. 2010
By Steven H Propp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Thomas Szasz (born 1920) is Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the State University of New York Health Science Center. He is a well-known critic of psychiatry, of the social role of medicine in modern society, and is a social libertarian.

Szasz states in the Preface to this 1970 book, "This book is a collection of essays, all but one of which have appeared previously. While none of the pieces is reprinted verbatim, most of them appear here with only minor changes."

Here are some representative quotations from the book:

"In short, then, whereas the so-called madman is one who characteristically COMMITS himself, the psychiatrist is one who characteristically remains UNCOMMITTED. Then, claiming a false neutrality toward the issues at hand, he EXCLUDES the madman and his troublesome claims from society."
"Can anyone really believe that a psychotherapist's ideas on religion, politics, and related issues play no role in his practical work? ... This fact should occasion no greater surprise than that practicing Catholics rarely frequent birth-control clinics, or that Christian Scientists rarely consult psychoanalysts."
"My aim ... is to suggest that the phenomena now called mental illnesses ... be removed from the category of illnesses, and that they be regarded as the expressions of man's struggle with the problem of how he should live."
"I do not believe in 'helping' patients by 'pleading insanity' for them."
"It is significant, moreover, that there is hardly a prominent person who, during the last fifty years of so, has not been diagnosed by a psychiatrist as suffering from some type of 'mental illness.'"
"Thus has Freud's subversive psychotherapy been domesticated in America: an instrument for liberating man has been transformed into yet another technique for pacifying him."
"Psychiatry has not decided whether it ought to study and treat pathological conditions, social performances, or both."
"Because of the uses and abuses of psychiatric diagnoses, one might conclude that they are meaningless. This is not so. There ARE certain differences in the way human beings are 'put together.'"
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Excellent interpretation 22 Nov. 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Memorization of the criticisms this book explores, will certainly instill in it's readers enough anger and intelligent contentions of the mental health system. Although not strikingly recent, the principles are the same, in whatever decade. This book reads very lucidly, and should captivate readers from front to back.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Condition of book not as described 1 Oct. 2010
By Ann Lee Morgan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While the book was perfectly readable and arrived fairly promptly, I think the seller should have indicated more clearly that it was a heavily used and marked-up copy.
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