Top positive review
30 people found this helpful
Exciting yet thorough, with fascinating detail
on 15 February 2008
Long and thorough but easily dipped into by chapters, this is a great survey of specific women - from famous literary figures on down - and the medical practices and theories that bound them and defined them in different ways. While it's clearly taken on a lot of the theory of Foucault and others in its reading of history, it's not a difficult book. Though rigorous, it is less interested in a final conclusion or a theory of history, than it is in the weave of detail and the weighing of comparables in actual lives, both of the mind-doctors and their subjects. Some of the life stories are both unbelieveable and inspiring. Making difficult ideas accessible and even entertaining to read about, i recommend this highly as a very usfeul and readable survey of the field.