Who is ‘Mad’? Who is Not? And Who Decides?
In this fascinating exploration of mental illness, Professor Brendan Kelly examines ‘madness’ in history and how we have responded to it over the centuries.
We travel from the psychiatric institutions of modern India to scientific studies of the brain in Victorian England. We discover the beginnings of formal asylum care and witness the experimental therapies of the cavernous psychiatric hospitals of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Ireland, England, Belgium, Italy, Germany and the United States.
Covering lobotomy and the Nazis’ Aktion T4 campaign, as well as Freud, psychoanalysis, cognitive behavioural therapy and neuroscience, In Search of Madness examines the shift in recent times from ‘psychobabble’ to ‘neurobabble’.
This is an all encompassing history of one of the most basic fears to haunt the human psyche – madness – and it concludes with a passionate manifesto for change: four proposals to make mental health services more effective, accessible and just.