MODELS OF MADNESS, MODELS OF MEDICINE by Miriam & Humphry Osmond Siegler


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A tirade against new psychiatric models. The authors argue that the medical approach, with its ""Aesculapian authority"" (sapiential, moral and charismatic) and its ""sick role,"" is far and above superior to any current competitor. Eight models are analyzed according to definition, etiology, treatment, goal, prognosis, concept of suicide, personnel, and rights and duties of patients, families and society. The authors argue that in the ""continuous"" models (broad in scope -- psychoanalytic, social, psychedelic, conspiratorial and family interaction) ""a properly trained expert who had all the data. . .would be able to explain everything"" (empiricizing a process of rapport and interpretation); "". . .blame has to be widely distributed. . ."" (""blame"" isn't appropriate). They write that in psychoanalysis, victims are to be seen as ""grievous errors of child-rearing"" (a most superficial interpretation). They iterate that Laing romanticizes schizophrenia as many in the 19th century did tuberculosis (one would like to see this parallel developed -- how does he ""romanticize?"" what do schizophrenia and T.B. have in common?); moreover, they utterly disregard Laing's foundations in Sartrian phenomenology. The authors peremptorily dismiss the ideas of Anna Freud (""We can hardly imagine this to be true"") and Thomas Szasz (""dogmatic""). And they insist that anyone with medical training has no business questioning the party line. Painfully abusive and twisted.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1974
Publisher: Macmillan