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Madness: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) Paperback – 25 Aug 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 152 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford (25 Aug. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199608032
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199608034
  • Product Dimensions: 16.8 x 1 x 11.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 180,565 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Andrew Scull has held faculty positions at the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton, and the University of California, where he is Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Science Studies. He is a past president of the Society for the Social History of Medicine, and has held fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. He is the author or editor of more than twenty books, many of them on the history of psychiatry in Britain and the United States. He has lectured on five continents, as well as making many media appearances on programmes dealing with mental health issues.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful By N.D.A. Kemp on 17 April 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Andrew Scull approaches an enormous and compelling subject with remarkable clarity and concision without ever slipping into perfunctory analysis. That he is a leading scholar in the history and sociology of mental illness is immediately apparent, yet his account is wonderfully accessible and engaging for all. He is adroit in his articulation of the many paradigmatic shifts that have occurred in the understanding and treatment of mental illness. Nor is this a Whiggish account of uniform progress. He is appropriately robust in his handling of the pseudo-scientific Freudian mumbo-jumbo that engulfed psychology and psychiatry for far too long. The current hegemony of pharmacological approaches is also treated to a far from eulogic assessment. Perhaps the most appealing quality of Andrew Scull's excellent book is that it is mercifully free from the jargon and depressingly mechanistic theory-laden approaches that have frequently infected studies in the history of medicine.
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By R Patterson on 9 Dec. 2014
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Very informative
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7 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Casual reader on 18 Mar. 2012
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I LOVE the Very Short Introductions - I am huge fan. But this time I am a little bit disappointed. I am not a native speaker but I use English on a daily basis, and this book was so difficult to read that I could actually not finish it. I was sitting with a dictionary next to me every time I started to read and breaking up my reading to look up half the words in a sentence made it impossible to actually enjoy it!. Apart from that, I expected something slightly more scientific, not historic, from this book. The historical account of Madness and how it was treated throughout the centuries, though very interesting, was a bit to much - it killed my curiosity about the subject pretty fast. I wanted to know something more about the actual mechanisms behind madness, why people get mad, what happens with their brain (if it is the reason for madness) or is the mind that gets distorted. I did not get an answer - at least it is not within the first 70 pages of the book. If you are not a native speaker - be prepared!
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By steve bridges on 25 July 2015
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2 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 15 Nov. 2011
Format: Paperback
The item was received as described and promptly and was a very useful book, as our all the short intorudction books.
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