They Say You'Re Crazy / Edition 1

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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.

Discusses how the DSM is developed/assesses the extent to which scientific methods are disregarded/etc.

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Editorial Reviews

A psychologist and former consultant to those who construct the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders--used by most psychiatrists, therapists, and social workers evaluating patients--offers lay readers an inside look at the process by which decisions about abnormality are made. Caplan says scientific methods and evidence are often disregarded as the handbook is revised and that the personal biases and political considerations behind it are masquerading as solid science and truth. Extensive bibliography. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780201488326
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/1996
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 384
  • Lexile: 1510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 0.85 (w) x 5.50 (h) x 8.50 (d)

Meet 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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Table of Contents

1 How Do They Decide Who Is Normal? 1
2 Whose Normality Is It, Anyway? 33
3 Do Mental Health Professionals Think Anyone Is Normal? 59
4 How the American Psychiatric Association Decides Who Is Not Normal - Part I 83
5 How the American Psychiatric Association Decides Who Is Not Normal - Part II 122
6 Delusional Dominating Personality Disorder: "If This Sounds Discouraging, I'm Afraid It Is Meant To" 168
7 How Gatekeeping Replaces Scientific Precision 185
8 What Motivates the DSM Authors? 226
9 Media: The Good and the Bad 240
10 Where's the Harm, and What Will Help? 272
Appendix A: Newspaper and Magazine Articles about PMDD 291
Appendix B: Broadcast Segments or Shows about LLPDD/PMDD 293
Notes 295
Bibliography 319
Index 341
Permission Acknowledgments 357
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2009


    This book does what it sets out to do from the writer prespective. Dr. Caplan opened my eyes and reminded me to take a second look at what I will diagnose and not believe everything that I am told. She reminded me about the importance of doing my homework/research. OMG! She went up against the DSM and she is still standing, was my first thought after I read this book. Very good book that I feel all individuals should read that will have any dealings with the DSM whether you are a counselor or a patient.

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