Archive for October, 2011

The History of Madness and Psychiatry at the History of Science Society Conference (3-6 November 2011) – bis

For all the nerds among our readers, I have created a twitter list (!/MajBen/science-cleveland2011), which allows you to follow people tweeting from the HSS, SHOT, or 4S conferences in Cleveland (Ohio).

At least one of the co-editor from h-madness (@MajBen) will also try to tweet from the conference.

New Book Announcement – Quand l’histoire rend fou

Laure Murat, L’homme qui se prenait pour Napoléon. Pour une histoire politique de la folie, Paris, Gallimard, 2011, 379 p.

For more please click here.

Thanks for 100 000 views

In January 2010, we launched h-madness. Today we got the 100 000th hit on our website. Thanks to the readers, contributors and commenters.

Psychiatric Narratives Workshop – Cardiff

cardiffPsychiatric Narratives Workshop
Glamorgan Archives, Cardiff, 23 November, 13.00 – 17.00

Organized as part of CISSMI’s “Off Sick” programme of events, the workshop explores the different types of illness narration through an examination of psychiatric narratives and the problems of uncovering the patient’s voice in psychiatric institutions. Uncovering these voices has often proved problematic, and the workshop seeks to explore institutional psychiatric care from the inside out. The workshop features a series of papers by historians and clinicians on problems of evidence and the ways in which they have used psychiatric case notes and fiction to understand the experiences of psychiatric patients and the nature of psychiatric institutions.

13.00 – 14.00 Registration and Lunch
14.00 – 14.15 Introduction
14.15 – 15.00 Pamela Michael (Bangor): “Patients, Imagination and Welsh
15.00 – 15.45 Peter Barham (Oxford): “In pursuit of the imperial
lunatic, c.1860-1940: some problems of evidence”
15.45 – 16.15 Coffee
16.15 – 17.00 Rhys Thomas (Swansea): “Clinicians and case notes: the modern
17.00 – 17.15 Closing Discussion

Funded by the Wellcome Trust, the workshop will be held at the Glamorgan
Archive (Cardiff) on Wednesday 23rd November 2011. Although a free event, to
register please contact Dr Keir Waddington (

Details of where to find the Glamorgan Archives can be found here.

Further details can be found here.

Capitalism and asylums: antipsychiatry and the Sozialistisches Patientenkollektiv Heidelberg

Radio Q, which is animated by students from several German universities, has produced a feature on the Sozialistisches Patientenkollektiv Heidelberg (SPK). The SPK was one of the most radical antipsychiatric movements in Europe.

To listen to the feature, click here.

To get more information on the SPK, click here.

New Book Announcement – La folie by Raphaël Enthoven

The French philosopher Raphaël Enthoven has edited a book with several (historical) contributions on madness. Evelyne Grossmann has written on Antonin Artaud, Judith Revel and Guillaume Le Blanc on Foucault, Jean-Claude Margolin on Erasme…

For more, click here.

The History of Madness and Psychiatry at the History of Science Society Conference (3-6 November 2011)

The Annual History of Science Society (HSS) Conference meets in Cleveland, Ohio 3-6 November 2011.  This year, the meeting is co-located with the annual conferences of two other important science and technology studies organizations:  The Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) and the Society for the History of Technology (SHOT).

For those historians of psychiatry and mental health attending, there will be a number of panels that may be of interest.  The editors of H-Madness, for instance, will be discussing new perspectives on the history of madness and mental illness in the modern world.  Other panels will discuss topics covering, among others, emotional disorders in East Asia, the classification of people, globalization, nightmares, and sexuality.

Also noteworthy, co-editor of H-Madness Elizabeth Lunbeck will be giving the annual distinguished lecture before the Forum for the History of Human Sciences on Saturday.  Her talk is entitled “Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Power: Charisma, Fascination, and Narcissism.”

Finally, the editors of H-Madness will be meeting to discuss ways of enhancing and refining the website, in order to make it a more useful and effective resource for scholars and the general public.  We would therefore also welcome hearing from any of you who will be in attendance at the conference.  If you would like to meet with one or more of the editors during the conference, we invite you to contact either Benoit Majerus (email: or Greg Eghigian (email:

Panels Being Held at the Upcoming HSS Conference in Cleveland, Ohio, 3-6 November 2011

New Perspectives in the Modern History of Madness and Psychiatry

Chair and Commentator: Greg Eghigian, Pennsylvania State University

1. The Material Culture of Asylums, Benoit Majerus, Université du Luxembourg

2. Whither Narcissism? Types and Traits in the History of the Personality Disorders, Elizabeth Lunbeck, Vanderbilt University

3. New Perspectives in the History of Forensic Psychiatry, Eric Engstrom, Humboldt-


4. Psychiatry and the Visual Turn, Andreas Killen, CUNY

Locating Emotions in the Body: Transnational Perspectives on the Treatment of Emotional Disorders in East Asian Medicine (Session sponsored by FHSAsia, the Forum for the History of Science in Asia)

Chair: Volker Scheid, University of Westminster

1. Cosmological, Fragile, and Disembodied: Towards an Historical Epistemology of

Chinese Medicine in Late Imperial and Contemporary China, Volker Scheid, University of Westminster

2. All Diseases Arise from the Liver: An Historical Epistemology of the Treatment of

Emotional Disorders in Kampo Medicine, Keiko Daidoji, University of Westminster

3. The Excitations and Suppressions of the Times: Locating Emotional Disorders in the Liver in Modern Chinese Medicine, *Eric Karchmer, University of Westminster

4. Fire-Illness: Globalized Psychiatry, Nationalized History, and the Korean Effort to Make the Local Visible, Soyoung Suh, Dartmouth College

Classifying People

Chair: Robin Wolfe Scheffler, Yale University

1. Japanese Internment and the Science of Governing Dependent Peoples: Social Context and Scientific Truth, Karin Rosemblatt, University of Maryland and Leandro Benmergui, University of Maryland

2. The Monkey in the Panopticon: David Ferrier’s Utilitarian Neurology, Cathy Gere, University of California, San Diego

3. The Psychologist and the Bombardier: The Army Air Force Classification Program in WWII, Marcia Holmes, University of Chicago

4. The First German Genetics Institute 1914- 1930: A ‘Damenstift’ (Foundation for Noble Nuns), Ida Stamhuis, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam

Treatment, Sex, and Discovery

Chair: Luis Campos, Drew University

1. Protection Against Nightmares: Talismans and Ritual Exorcist Techniques in Late

Ming Encyclopedia Forest of Dreams, Brigid E. Vance, Princeton University

2. ‘Can There Be a Science of Bibliotherapy?’: Reading as Treatment in United States Hospitals, 1935-1940, Monique Dufour, Virginia Polytechnic Institute

3. The Science and Transformation of Sex in Republican China, Howard H. Chiang, Princeton University

4. The Parallel Lives of Two Viruses: Their Discovery and Reception, Neeraja Sankaran, Yonsei University, South Korea

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