Are Americans particularly hyperactive?

The Opionion Pages of the New York Times have launched an interesting discussion entitled “Are Americans More Prone to A.D.H.D.?” Among the experts they asked for an answer is the author Ethan Watters, whose recent book Crazy like us h-madness editor Hans Pols has reviewed a year ago. Watters argues that

psychiatric historians suggest that every generation has a “symptom pool,” behaviors by which individuals can communicate their distress. (…) In certain historical moments, a given diagnosis will hit such a resonant cultural note that it catches fire. This, I believe, is the story of A.D.H.D.

Edward Hallowell (psychiatrist), Peter R. Breggin (psychiatrist), Donna Ford (professor of special education) and Melana Zyla Vickers (journalist) are four other “experts” the New York Times asked for answers.

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