Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry

Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry

Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry

Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry


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The inspiration for the PBS series Mysterious of Mental Illness, Shrinks brilliantly tells the "astonishing" story of psychiatry's origins, demise, and redemption (Siddhartha Mukherjee). 

Psychiatry has come a long way since the days of chaining "lunatics" in cold cells and parading them as freakish marvels before a gaping public.

But, as Jeffrey Lieberman, MD, the former president of the American Psychiatric Association, reveals in his extraordinary and eye-opening book, the path to legitimacy for "the black sheep of medicine" has been anything but smooth.

In Shrinks, Dr. Lieberman traces the field from its birth as a mystic pseudo-science through its adolescence as a cult of "shrinks" to its late blooming maturity — beginning after World War II — as a science-driven profession that saves lives. With fascinating case studies and portraits of the luminaries of the field — from Sigmund Freud to Eric Kandel — Shrinks is a gripping and illuminating read, and an urgent call-to-arms to dispel the stigma of mental illnesses by treating them as diseases rather than unfortunate states of mind.

“A lucid popular history...At once skeptical and triumphalist. It shows just how far psychiatry has come.” —Julia M. Klein, Boston Globe

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316278980
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 01/05/2016
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 455,937
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Jeffrey A. Lieberman, MD, is the Lawrence C. Kolb Professor and Chairman of Psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and Director of the New York State Psychiatric Institute. Formerly the President of the American Psychiatric Association, in 2000 he was elected to the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine. He lives with his wife and two sons in New York City.

Table of Contents

Introduction: What's Wrong with Elena? 3

Part I The Story of Diagnosis

Chapter 1 The Stepchild of Medicine: Mesmerists, Alienists, and Analysts 15

Chapter 2 Down the Garden Path: The Rise of the Shrink 49

Chapter 3 What Is Mental Illness?: A Farrago of Diagnoses 87

Chapter 4 Destroying the Rembrandts, Goyas, and Van Goghs: Anti-Freudians to the Rescue 117

Part II The Story of Treatment

Chapter 5 Desperate Measures: Fever Cures, Coma Therapy, and Lobotomies 153

Chapter 6 Mother's Little Helper: Medicine at Last 172

Part III Psychiatry Reborn

Chapter 7 Out of the Wilderness: The Brain Revolution 203

Chapter 8 Soldier's Heart: The Mystery of Trauma 240

Chapter 9 The Triumph of Pluralism: The DSM-5 271

Chapter 10 The End of Stigma: The Future of Psychiatry 292

Epilogue 316

Acknowledgments 318

Sources and Additional Reading 323

Index 329

What People are Saying About This

Sylvia Nasar

Jeffrey Lieberman's extraordinary account of the scientific revolution in psychiatry - a revolution that he both participated in and helped to foster - is compelling. But it is his candor, lack of dogmatism and sensitivity to suffering that will linger in your mind long after you've turned the last page. --Sylvia Nasar, author of A Beautiful Mind

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