Insanity: The Idea and Its Consequences

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9780815604600: Insanity: The Idea and Its Consequences
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From one of the most renowned and controversial thinkers in behavioral science, here is a critical examination of the way both science and society define insanity. Attacking the universally accepted psychiatric doctrines that blur the distinction between literal and metaphoric diseases, Szasz argues that insanity is not an objectively definable or identifiable condition and presents a more fully-rounded account of the insanity concept, showing how it relates to and differs from three closely allied ideas--social deviance, bodily illness and the sick role. Reveals why it is truly impossible to understand psychiatric problems without first distinguishing an abnormal biological condition--like diabetes--from the sick role. Destined to become a classic, this is an important addition to the author's already impressive body of work.

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In this book, Dr. Szasz challenges the way both science and society define insanity; in the process, he helps us better understand this often misunderstood condition.

From Library Journal:

Szasz is the well-known anti-psychiatric psychiatrist who first attacked the "myth of mental illness" 25 years ago. Several books since, including the present one, seem redundantly to echo his attack. Always a clear and accessible writer, the author has some trenchant criticisms of psychobiology, of a society perhaps too ready to excuse criminality as psychopathology, of a field filled with jargon (is "self-actualization" anything more than "living life to its fullest"?). Unfortunately, such refreshing insights are buried in the overall excess of a polemic dismissing virtually all inner mental life and conflict in favor of a vague, apparently concretistic viewpoint. The book is certainly acessible to the lay public but not much of an addition to the author's previous work. Paul Hymowitz, Psychiatry Dept., Cornell Medical Ctr., New York
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780471847083: Insanity: The Idea and Its Consequences

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ISBN 10:  0471847089 ISBN 13:  9780471847083
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc, 1987
Hardcover

9780471525349: Insanity: The Idea and Its Consequences

John W..., 1990
Softcover

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Szasz, Thomas
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Book Description Syracuse University Press, United States, 1997. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English. Brand new Book. The idea of insanity pervades every aspect of our daily lives. Thomas Szasz contends that the term actually functions as a euphemism for problems in living, as an excuse for crime and misbehaviour, as a stigma for invalidating adversaries - and, generally, as a metaphor and legal fiction. In "Insanity", Dr. Szasz presents a systematic articulation of the precise character and practical consequences of the idea of mental illness. He shows the way to a better understanding of this almost universally misunderstood condition by first establishing the scientific criteria and linguistic conventions we use for deciding what constitutes bodily disease, and then demonstrating the metaphorical character of the "diseases" that affect the mind rather than the brain. This book was originally published in 1987 by John Wiley. Seller Inventory # APC9780815604600

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Book Description Syracuse University Press, United States, 1997. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English. Brand new Book. The idea of insanity pervades every aspect of our daily lives. Thomas Szasz contends that the term actually functions as a euphemism for problems in living, as an excuse for crime and misbehaviour, as a stigma for invalidating adversaries - and, generally, as a metaphor and legal fiction. In "Insanity", Dr. Szasz presents a systematic articulation of the precise character and practical consequences of the idea of mental illness. He shows the way to a better understanding of this almost universally misunderstood condition by first establishing the scientific criteria and linguistic conventions we use for deciding what constitutes bodily disease, and then demonstrating the metaphorical character of the "diseases" that affect the mind rather than the brain. This book was originally published in 1987 by John Wiley. Seller Inventory # APC9780815604600

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