They Say You're Crazy: How The World's Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who's Normal

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How are decisions made about who is normal? As a former consultant to those who construct the bible of the mental-health professions,” the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), Paula Caplan offers and insider's look at the process by which decisions about abnormality are made. Cutting through the professional psycho-babble, Caplan clearly assesses the astonishing extent to which scientific methods and evidence are disregarded as the handbook is developed. A must read for consumers and practitioners of the mental-health establishment, which through its creation of potentially damaging interpretations and labels, has the power to alter our lives in devastating ways.

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About the Author:

Paula J. Caplan, Ph.D. chosen by the American Psychological Association as an eminent woman psychologist,” is the author of the bestselling The Myth of Women's Masochism and Don't Blame Mother, among other books. She is a clinical and research psychologist.

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From Canadian Book ReviewAnnual cbraonline.com/member/search/index.php?action=details&page=0&sort_col=TITLE&sort_dir=ASC&book_id=13481
 
There is a kind of free-floatingconsensus in our society that those members of the mental-health elite who determinewho is psychologically abnormal are guided by a combination of empiricalevidence and concern for the well-being of the patient. Paula Caplan, aclinical/research psychologist and former consultant to the creators of theinfluential American Psychiatric Association's (APA) Diagnostic and StatisticalManual of Mental Disorders (DSM), examines in this well-documented, closelyargued, and deeply disturbing book "the shockingly unscientific basis ofthe DSM, the politics and arbitrariness involved in deciding who is normal, andthe motives of the major players." Specifically, the book focuses on theopposition of Caplan and others to the proposed addition to the DSM-IV ofSelf-Defeating Personality Disorder (SDPD) (whereby female victims of abuse arepathologized for responding to abuse in self-denying, self-effacing ways--waysthat are, in fact, socially prescribed) and to the retention of Premenstrual
Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), also known as Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS).

In painstaking detail, Caplan and others conveyed to APA officials the scientificinvalidity of these categories as well as their harmful consequences, only tobe met with evasiveness, outright dishonesty, and megadoses of obfuscation anddoublethink. Ultimately, adverse publicity forced the withdrawal of SDPD fromthe DSM-IV; PMDD, however, was not only retained but upgraded in status. Notsurprisingly, the largely conservative white male APA elite rejected Caplan'sproposed inclusion of Delusional Dominating Personality Disorder (DDPD), alsoknown as "Macho Personality Disorder," even though empirical supportfor it far exceeds that for PMDD. The baffling, perverse decision-making demonstratedby the APA begins to make ugly sense as Caplan explores the ties that bind bigbusiness and organized psychiatry: in particular, the unholy alliance betweendrug companies and the APA.

Besides exposing the shifting sands upon which the DSM rests, this book emphasizesthe cultural biases that underscore conceptions of "normality," aswell as the societal problems that are glossed over by convenient, quick-fixpathologizing labels. The powerful vested interests Caplan describes do not pointto an imminent reform of the status quo, but her level-headed, compassionate,and wholly persuasive wake-up call is an admirable start.

Review by Sarah Robertson, anassociate editor of the Canadian BookReview
Annual
.

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9780201407587: They Say You're Crazy: How The World's Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who's Normal

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Book Description INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US, United Kingdom, 1996. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. How are decisions made about who is normal? As a former consultant to those who construct the bible of the mental-health professions," the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), Paula Caplan offers and insider's look at the process by which decisions about abnormality are made. Cutting through the professional psycho-babble, Caplan clearly assesses the astonishing extent to which scientific methods and evidence are disregarded as the handbook is developed. A must read for consumers and practitioners of the mental-health establishment, which through its creation of potentially damaging interpretations and labels, has the power to alter our lives in devastating ways. Seller Inventory # APC9780201488326

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Book Description INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US, United Kingdom, 1996. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. How are decisions made about who is normal? As a former consultant to those who construct the bible of the mental-health professions," the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), Paula Caplan offers and insider's look at the process by which decisions about abnormality are made. Cutting through the professional psycho-babble, Caplan clearly assesses the astonishing extent to which scientific methods and evidence are disregarded as the handbook is developed. A must read for consumers and practitioners of the mental-health establishment, which through its creation of potentially damaging interpretations and labels, has the power to alter our lives in devastating ways. Seller Inventory # APC9780201488326

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Book Description Da Capo Press. Paperback. Condition: New. 382 pages. Dimensions: 8.1in. x 5.5in. x 1.1in.How are decisions made about who is normal As a former consultant to those who construct the bible of the mental-health professions, the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), Paula Caplan offers and insiders look at the process by which decisions about abnormality are made. Cutting through the professional psycho-babble, Caplan clearly assesses the astonishing extent to which scientific methods and evidence are disregarded as the handbook is developed. A must read for consumers and practitioners of the mental-health establishment, which through its creation of potentially damaging interpretations and labels, has the power to alter our lives in devastating ways. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Seller Inventory # 9780201488326

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