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ebook / ISBN-13: 9780297871378

Price: £9.99

ON SALE: 12th March 2015

Genre: Medicine / Other Branches Of Medicine / Psychiatry

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A world-renowned psychiatrist reveals the fascinating story of psychiatry’s origins, demise and redemption.

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 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 since the Second World War 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. It is also an urgent call-to-arms to dispel the stigma surrounding mental illness and to start treating it as a disease rather than a state of mind.


As a retort to those that still believe there are no mental disorders, only diverse mentalities, Jeffrey Lieberman's historic and spirited defence of psychiatric diagnoses and treatments has much work to do ... This is a humane guide to psychiatry's internal conflicts and a candid account of its claims to scientific credibility
Iain Finlayson, THE TIMES
Journeying through the history of psychiatry with Jeffrey A. Lieberman is not unlike being led by Voltaire's indomitable optimist, Professor Pangloss, through the seven years' war and the Lisbon earthquake ... [Lieberman is] a breezy, charming, and genial guide to a field fraught with difficulties ... [He is] an insider, with the kind of experience most professional historians cannot claim
Lisa Appignanesi, THE OBSERVER
An informative book ... Given that the mind is a fragile faculty and the brain is a delicate organ, it is sobering to discover from his book what a haphazard discipline psychiatry was until the 1970s
SHRINKS is an excellent way into the world of modern psychiatry: its science, the limits and benefits of its diagnostic systems and treatments, how doctors make good decisions and why they make bad ones. SHRINKS is as thorough as it is lively
Kay Redfield Jamison, author of AN UNQUIET MIND
The most authoritative exploration I have read of the state of contemporary psychiatry ... It is also the most hopeful. Jeffrey Lieberman's account of the scientific revolution in psychiatry - a revolution that he both participated in and helped to foster - is compelling. But it is his candour, 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