The Mind's Fate: A Psychiatrist Looks at His Profession - Thirty Years of Writings

Overview

With keen insight and grace, Robert Cole examines an impressive span of subjects: the problematic intersection between American culture and psychiatry; the work of pioneering psychological theorists, from Sigmund and Anna Freud to R. D. Laing, Erik Erikson, and Bruno Bettelheim; the risks and rewards of psychohistory; the psychological value of the spiritual life; the contributions of such authors as Walker Percy, William Styron, Raymond Carver, and Cormac McCarthy; the "fever of genius" of van Gogh; the nature ...
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Overview

With keen insight and grace, Robert Cole examines an impressive span of subjects: the problematic intersection between American culture and psychiatry; the work of pioneering psychological theorists, from Sigmund and Anna Freud to R. D. Laing, Erik Erikson, and Bruno Bettelheim; the risks and rewards of psychohistory; the psychological value of the spiritual life; the contributions of such authors as Walker Percy, William Styron, Raymond Carver, and Cormac McCarthy; the "fever of genius" of van Gogh; the nature of white racism; the making of a moral life; and his own theories of child development. Throughout, these intellectually powerful and humane essays reflect Dr. Coles's view of psychiatry as an enterprise extending far beyond the clinic. "In some way we must manage to blend poetic insight with a craft and unite intimately the rational and the intuitive, the aloof stance of the scholar with the passion and affection of the friend who cares and is moved." The Mind's Fate, originally published in 1975 and now available in a greatly expanded edition, represents Dr. Coles's major writings on the evolving fields of psychiatry and psychoanalyses. It is an extraordinary work of vision by the preeminent psychiatrist of our time.

"...focuses a critical eye on such topics as the benefits and risks of psychohistory, theories of child development, and the works of Freud."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This welcome, expanded edition of an essay collection first published in 1975 includes 16 previously uncollected pieces and is approximately 40% new material. Coles, Pulitzer Prize-winning psychiatrist and Harvard professor, is dismayed at the overreliance on psychoactive drugs in today's psychiatric profession. Among the notable new selections are a stirring account of Coles's work with poor black children in the South during the early civil rights era; a critique of reductionist Freudian and Marxist interpretations of religious faith; a case history of Connie, a rebellious, unruly, yet devoutly Catholic eight-year-old girl; and appreciations of the fictions of Raymond Carver and William Styron. Coles's assessments of Anna Freud's pioneering work with disturbed children, of Erik Erikson's developmental psychology of the life cycle, and of R.D. Laing and William James reflect his grasp of psychotherapy as an elusive mix of science and art. Whether he is discussing the pervasive violence and narcissism in American society or the deep religiosity in Van Gogh's paintings, his humanism and compassionate insight shine through. (Sept.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316151399
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 10/19/1996
  • Edition description: 2nd Paperback Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 1,222,921
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 1.01 (d)

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