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Creating Mental Illness

by Allan V. Horwitz (Author)



Book Description
In this surprising book, Allan V. Horwitz argues that our current conceptions of
mental illness as a disease fit only a small number of serious psychological
conditions and that most conditions currently regarded as mental illness are
cultural constructions, normal reactions to stressful social circumstances, or
simply forms of deviant behavior.

"Thought-provoking and important. . .Drawing on and consolidating the ideas of a
range of authors, Horwitz challenges the existing use of the term mental illness
and the psychiatric ideas and practices on which this usage is based. . . .
Horwitz enters this controversial territory with confidence, conviction, and
clarity."—Joan Busfield, American Journal of Sociology

"Horwitz properly identifies the financial incentives that urge therapists and
drug companies to proliferate psychiatric diagnostic categories. He correctly
identifies the stranglehold that psychiatric diagnosis has on research funding
in mental health. Above all, he provides a sorely needed counterpoint to the
most strident advocates of disease-model psychiatry."—Mark Sullivan, Journal of
the American Medical Association

"Horwitz makes at least two major contributions to our understanding of mental
disorders. First, he eloquently draws on evidence from the biological and social
sciences to create a balanced, integrative approach to the study of mental
disorders. Second, in accomplishing the first contribution, he provides a
fascinating history of the study and treatment of mental disorders. . . from
early asylum work to the rise of modern biological psychiatry."—Debra Umberson,
Quarterly Review of Biology

From the Inside Flap

In this surprising book, Allan V. Horwitz argues that our current conceptions of
mental illness as a disease fit only a small number of serious psychological
conditions and that most conditions currently regarded as mental illness are
cultural constructions, normal reactions to stressful social circumstances, or
simply forms of deviant behavior.


Product Details

Paperback: 315 pages
Publisher: University Of Chicago Press (September 1, 2003)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0226353826

 

 

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