Invisible Plague: The Rise of Mental Illness from 1750 to the Present

Invisible Plague The Rise of Mental Illness from to the Present The prevalence of insanity which was once considerably less than one case per total population has risen beyond five cases in Why has mental illness reached epidemic proportions What are

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  • Title: Invisible Plague: The Rise of Mental Illness from 1750 to the Present
  • Author: E. Fuller Torrey Judy Miller
  • ISBN: 9780813530031
  • Page: 176
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The prevalence of insanity, which was once considerably less than one case per 1,000 total population, has risen beyond five cases in 1,000 Why has mental illness reached epidemic proportions What are the causes of severe mental illness Why do we continue to deny the rising numbers, and how does this denial affect our ability to help those who are afflicted In The InvisThe prevalence of insanity, which was once considerably less than one case per 1,000 total population, has risen beyond five cases in 1,000 Why has mental illness reached epidemic proportions What are the causes of severe mental illness Why do we continue to deny the rising numbers, and how does this denial affect our ability to help those who are afflicted In The Invisible Plague, E Fuller Torrey and Judy Miller examine the records on insanity in England, Ireland, Canada, and the United States over a 250 year period, concluding, through both qualitative and quantitative evidence, that disorders like schizophrenia and bipolar illness are an unrecognized, modern day plague This book is a unique and major contribution to medical history Until now, insanity, and its apparent rise over the centuries, has been interpreted as a socially and economically driven phenomenon Torrey and Miller insist upon the biological reality of psychiatric disease and examine the reasons why its contemporary prevalence has been so profoundly misunderstood.

    One thought on “Invisible Plague: The Rise of Mental Illness from 1750 to the Present”

    1. Its been awhile, but this was a good imbued with plenty of solid quantitative research. The author examines data from three centuries regarding the per capita instance of insanity and links the rise of insanity to the rise of industrialization and urbanization. There is no true agenda by the author versus Foucault's post modern perspective on madness, and even if you don't agree with the hypothesis, the history and data are worth a read.

    2. I am still skeptical, but wow! this book has a lot of really great anecdotes. My favorite: In May, 1828, the South Carolina Lunatic Asylum opened. "Not a single patient was admitted for the first seven months, despite articles praising it and advertisements for patients in newspapers in Charleston and Columbia" (p. 210). The South Carolina state population was over half a million in 1818. By contrast, in modern St. Louis City we have under ½ million residents, but I'm sure we could fill the pla [...]

    3. Very informative, but so sad. I didn't know that back in the late 1800s and early 1900s that asylums were actually popular tourist attractions. People would buy tickets to go on a tour to see all of the "crazies." How incredibly humane and ignorant human beings can be at times. But a worthwhile read for anyone who has an interest in the subject and is concerned about the alarming increase of mental illness/disorders we are experiencing.

    4. Really probably 3.5 stars, but I can't do .5. It is an older book, so the "present" is 2001 with most if the monetary references being to 1997 dollars. But that doesn't change the historical info. It's a little heavy on the statistics, so it is a bit dry in places. But reading about how insanity translates into the popular culture and literature if the day was interesting.

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