Archive for March, 2013

Special issue of Schizophrenia Bulletin: One century of Karl Jaspers’ Allgemeine Psychopathologie (1913-2013)

The journal Schizophrenia Bulletin is celebrating one century of Karl Jaspers’ Allg. Psychopathol. with a special issue:


Assen Jablensky

Karl Jaspers: Psychiatrist, Philosopher, Humanist


Mario Maj

Karl Jaspers and the Genesis of Delusions in Schizophrenia

Special Features

First Person Account

Adam Timlett

Controlling Bizarre Delusions

Schizophrenia in Translation-Feature Editor: Thomas H. McGlashan

Gregory P. Strauss

The Emotion Paradox of Anhedonia in Schizophrenia: Or Is It?

Environment and Schizophrenia-Feature Editor: Jim van Os

Nikos C. Stefanis, Milan Dragovic, Brian D. Power, Assen Jablensky, David Castle, and Vera Anne Morgan

Age at Initiation of Cannabis Use Predicts Age at Onset of Psychosis: The 7- to 8-Year Trend


Cochrane Corner-Feature Editor: Clive E. Adams

Richard Morriss, Indira Vinjamuri, Mohammad Amir Faizal, Catherine A. Bolton, and James P. McCarthy

Training to Recognize the Early Signs of Recurrence in Schizophrenia

At Issue

Michael F. Green, William P. Horan, and Catherine A. Sugar

Has the Generalized Deficit Become the Generalized Criticism?

Commentary on Green et al. (This Issue)

James M. Gold and Dwight Dickinson

“Generalized Cognitive Deficit” in Schizophrenia: Overused or Underappreciated?


Commentary on Green et al. (This Issue)

Emilio Fernandez-Egea, Clemente Garcia-Rizo, Jorge Zimbron, and Brian Kirkpatrick

Diabetes or Prediabetes in Newly Diagnosed Patients With Nonaffective Psychosis? A Historical and Contemporary View

Theme: One Century of Allgemeine Psychopathologie (1913 to 2013) by Karl Jaspers Guest Editor: Paolo Fusar-Poli

Theme Introduction

Paolo Fusar-Poli

One Century of Allgemeine Psychopathologie (1913 to 2013) by Karl Jaspers

Josef Parnas, Louis A. Sass, and Dan ZahaviRediscovering Psychopathology: The Epistemology and Phenomenology of the Psychiatric Object


Aaron L. Mishara and Paolo Fusar-Poli

The Phenomenology and Neurobiology of Delusion Formation During Psychosis Onset: Jaspers, Truman Symptoms, and Aberrant Salience


Giovanni Stanghellini, Derek Bolton, and William K. M. Fulford

Person-Centered Psychopathology of Schizophrenia: Building on Karl Jaspers’ Understanding of Patient’s Attitude Toward His Illness

As well as the above thematic pieces, the issue also contains a number of regular articles. Click here for more information.

CfP – Colloquium “Sexual Futures: Versions of the Sexual Past, Visions of the Sexual Future” (University of Exeter, September 2013)

University of Exeter

5th & 6th September 2013

Call for Papers

The future offers a critical space to negotiate sexual possibilities. It can serve as a doomsday warning, provide utopian fantasies or aspirational goals for real reform. Such visions of the sexual future are often achieved through an imaginative reworking of motifs and elements from the past. This colloquium investigates how and why sexual knowledge, articulated in science, literature, art, politics, law and religion, turns to the past to envision the future.

When it comes to imagining the future, the past can be cast in manifold ways. It can appear as mythical, traditional, ancestral, atavistic, hereditary, primitive, classical, or historical. It can also serve a number of purposes. It can lend weight or authority; it can provide a rhetoric of objectivity, neutrality and empiricism to support visions of the future. It can galvanise calls for reform by appearing to offer visions of realistic possibility, alternative social worlds that have existed in the past and are therefore more than idle fantasy. The past can also be deployed in narratives about progress and decline, civilization and evolution, which lead towards a utopian or dystopian future. It can be marshalled as evidence to articulate universalising claims about humanity, provide evidence of variability across time, illustrate future possibilities or legitimise change. In addition, the past can offer a space of forgetting and loss and therefore a means of rejecting or engaging critically with the very concept of the future. It is the aim of the colloquium to examine how such uses of the past in the service of the future intersect with sexual knowledge and experience.

Forming part of the Sexual Knowledge, Sexual History project, this colloquium invites scholars from a range of disciplines to examine any aspect of the nexus between past, future and sex. Central questions might include, but are not limited to:

– Why and how have people throughout history turned to the past to imagine sexual futures?
– How does the past facilitate the imagination of future sexualities? Conversely, how does the past restrict what is considered to be a possible future?
– Which aspects or elements of the past are used in the construction of sexual futures?
– What authority does the past hold in the articulation of future visions of sexuality?
– How is the relation between past and future conceptualised differently over time and how does this change the way in which sexuality is understood and experienced?
– How do uses of the past in the service of the future compare across different areas of sexual knowledge, including science, literature, art, politics, law or religion?

Please contact Kate Fisher (, Rebecca Langlands ( or Jana Funke ( for further details or to discuss possible research papers.

Abstracts to be emailed to Jana Funke by 24th April 2013.

Image credit: Andrew Junge, “Pandora’s Box” (2005)

Conference – “Credulity: Enchantment and Modernity in the 19th-Century U.S.” (Heyman Center, Columbia University, 29-30 March 2013)

Credulity: Enchantment and Modernity in the 19th-Century U.S.

Heyman Center for the Humanities

Columbia University

Friday, March 29, 2013 – Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Heyman Center, Second Floor Common Room

What is the place of enchantment in nineteenth-century America?  Scholars of the secular have been accumulating a rich description of what it meant in this period to “aim for ‘modernity,'” in Talal Asad’s phrase. This conference asks about the persons and knowledges which appeared as excessive, even dangerous, to this project—while assuming that this excess cannot simply be described as “religion.” Credulity, a frequent term of abuse in antebellum sources, meant believing too readily and too well, often with the implication of bodily mismanagement: the credulous person’s nerves or brain did her down. So who were the credulous, and what did they know?  Detractors saw an ad-hoc collection of gullible scientists, political patsies, occult practitioners, religious enthusiasts, fiction readers, and superstitious primitives, all of them behind the times.  But how were such alleged failures distinctively modern?  Did connections develop between forms of credulity at first linked only by their bad reputations? How should we understand credulity’s angle on the rational—as symptom, queering, disability, doubling? Working on the assumption that modern enchantment is as much in need of historical description as secularity is, we are interested in topics including, but not limited to:

  • seductive literature and its credulous readers, literary frauds, lying memoirs;
  • queer beliefs and excessive epistemic desires;
  • the occult, magic, wonder shows, witchcraft;
  • contested sciences and contested scientific methods;
  • hysteria, nervousness, and models of the body;
  • revivals, “primitive” religion, Spiritualism;
  • defenses of credulity, attacks on skepticism, conventions of the exposé;
  • eighteenth-century precursors (enthusiasm debates, the Great Awakening) and twentieth-century aftermaths (the crowd, suggestion, surrealism)

Speakers include Emily Ogden, John Tresch, Dana Luciano, and many others.

RSVP Suggested:

For more information and to view the complete schedule of events, click here.

Book announcement: Die Belasteten. ‘Euthanasie’ 1939-1945. Eine Gesellschaftsgeschichte (Götz Aly)


u1_978-3-10-000429-1Every eighth german or austrian at the age of at least 25 is directly related to someone who has been murdered between 1939 and 1945 because of a mental disease or disability. The responsible euphemized these murders by describing them as ‘Gnadentod’ (mercy killing), ‘euthanasia’ or ‘medicide’. The relatives maintained silent about their mysteriously missing family members. Partly because a false death certificate and a so-called ‘Trostbrief’ (consolation letter) concealed the true nature of the death. On the other hand some even might have felt relieved by the quiet disappearance of a needy relative that lifted a burden off their shoulders and were thus, in the following, ashamed to name the victims.
Although the historical and political examination of the subject was already initiated in the 1980s, the ‘Krankenmorde’ (murder of the sick) have not found their place in the collective memory yet. But the silence of the affected family members is finally being broken. Slowly the names and stories of long-forgotten family members that were labeled as ‘hereditary defective’ and hence gased, starved or killed by a lethal injection, are being recollected. (Sigrid Falkenstein tells the story of her aunt Anna, who died in a gas chamber in Grafeneck in 1940, in “Annas Spuren. Ein Opfer der NS-Euthanasie”, published in June 2012.)
The recently published monograph Die Belasteten, by Götz Aly, a renowned german historian and journalist, actively takes part in this recollection process by including the perspective of victims and their families in his research.
The book not only traces how the killings found its way into the therapeutical daily routine and how they even became a part in the reformist agenda of the responsible physicians, but it also shows how the families behaved in the face of an open german secret, the ‘euthanasia’ murders.

For further reading (in german):


The table of contents as well as a short extract of the book can be found here.

Robert Castel – 1933 – 2013

5463590-robert-castel-et-les-metamorphoses-du-pauvre-510x253[Last week Nicolas Henckes published a French version of this text on h-madness. Anne Lovell  did translate the text into English and did add some additional informations for Somatosphere.]

By Nicolas Henckes and Anne Lovell

French sociologist and historian Robert Castel passed away on March 12, 2013, at the age of 79. An important figure in French intellectual life over the past two decades, he was an acute observer of the transformations of the relationship between contemporary societies and their vulnerable populations. But Robert Castel is most probably best known to readers of this blog as the author of some of the most fertile analyses of the transformation of French and American psychiatry in the 19th and 20th centuries. Originally trained as a philosopher, Castel turned to sociology thanks to the influence of Pierre Bourdieu, but soon forged an independent path. From the mid-1960s until the early 1980s, a period when he was close to Michel Foucault, Castel went on to develop a highly original and coherent research trajectory around a sociological understanding of psychiatry, characterized by his capacity to seize with great precision social processes and their temporal boundaries, but also by his attentiveness to the very texture of the underlying discourses that became the material for his analyses. The strength of the work he published during this period lies partly in his sensitivity to transformations in real time in the very fields he was observing.

At first, and like most observers and actors within psychiatry at the time, Castel’s preoccupations concerned the question of the psychiatric institution. In Le psychanalysme (1973), he showed how the institution itself shaped French psychoanalysis in the 1960s, while L’ordre psychiatrique (1976, English translation: The Regulation of Madness) traced the origins of the French psychiatric institution in the genesis of the Law of June 30, 1838, with its dual roots in criminal justice and psychiatry and its loose criteria for commitment, which remained in effect until the 1990s. He then focused his analytical gaze beyond institutional psychiatry, on the new means of constituting and governing the normal and the pathological in the “psy” world of the end of the 1970s (La société psychiatrique avancée, 1979, co-authored with Françoise Castel and Anne M. Lovell, and published in English as The Psychiatric Society, 1983 ; and La gestion des risques, in 1982). Castel’s analysis of the strategies developed through French President Valéry Giscard d’Estaing’s new social policies for managing populations at risk influenced British works on the forms that governmentality through risk took in advanced liberal societies (e.g. Nikolas Rose’s work). Castel’s perspectives on the means through which psychotherapeutic practices and psychological discourse after 1968 constituted a “social world within a world without the social” contributed to the emergence of a new form of “asocial sociability” is still one of the most relevant analyses about the contribution of “psy” disciplines to contemporary individualism.

Beyond his academic involvement, Robert Castel was moved by a certain idea of how psychiatry should be practiced, a view he defended along with his wife Françoise Castel, a public psychiatrist, and with the Italian radical psychiatrist, Franco Basaglia. The untimely death of both undoubtedly influenced his decision to take on new subjects in the second half of the 1980s. After a study of how problem drug users exit from drug dependence (toxicomanie), he began a ten-year project which was to become the second great moment in his oeuvre. Les métamorphoses de la question sociale, published in 1995 (English translation, From manual workers to wage laborers: transformation of the social question, 2011), gained a broad readership, from social scientists to elected officials and activists from all points along the political spectrum. This historical sociology analyzes the constitution and transformations of the wage-worker (salariat) as a social and political condition, a process which broadens the forms of vulnerability and disaffiliation already revealed in Castel’s earlier analyses of mental illness.

Always extremely lucid about his own trajectory, Castel devoted his last years to penetrating analyses on the future of the social critique hewn by sociologists from the generation of the Sixties in a world marked by the end of utopian possibilities and of voluntaristic positions on social integration. The totality of Castel’s objects of analysis may raise numerous questions; those regarding psychiatry certainly call for a re-evaluation of the body of his work. Yet that body of work constitutes an impressive ensemble, which any historian or sociologist interested in contemporary transformations of psychiatry and the social must confront at one moment or another.

Selected Bibliography

Castel, Françoise, Robert Castel, and Anne M. Lovell. 1982 The psychiatric society. Columbia University Press.

Castel, Robert. 1973 Le psychanalysme. F. Maspero.

________. 1988 The regulation of madness: The origins of incarceration in France. University of California Press Berkeley.

________. 1991 “From dangerousness to risk.” In G. Burchell, C. Gordon and P. Miller, eds. The Foucault Effect: Studies in Governmentality. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Pp, 281–298

________. 1994 “Problematization as a mode of reading history.” In: Foucault and the Writing of History, Jan Goldstein, etc. London: Wiley-Blackwell, :237-52.

________. 2003 From manual workers to wage laborers: transformation of the social question. Transaction Pub.

________. 2011 (1982) La Gestion des Risques: de l’Anti-Psychiatrie à l’Après-Psychanalyse. Paris: Minuit.

Conference: The Psy-ences and Mental Health in East Central Europe and Eurasia (Chicago, April 2013)

The Psy-ences and Mental Health in East Central Europe and Eurasia

April 29–30, 2013, University of Chicago

Over the past decades, the professions and disciplines concerned with the human mind, brain and behavior (“the psy-ences”) have undergone significant changes in the countries of East Central Europe and Eurasia. Throughout much of the state-socialist period these professions were closely linked to the party-state’s project of producing the “new socialist person.” Today, these professions bear a more complex relationship to the state as they manage transformations ranging from psychiatric reform and attempts to introduce principles of “global mental health” and harm reduction to the region, to the growing influence of biopsychiatry and pharmaceutical companies in determining definitions of health, to the rising popularity of psychological expertise in the development of human capital.

Moreover, the shifts in disciplinary objects of knowledge and intervention – namely, mental illness and addictions – can be linked to the repeated social disruptions individuals, families and populations in all of these countries have experienced. While the most recent disruptions have emerged from the economic contraction and related austerity measures, the social upheaval, economic depression, abrupt cultural change, and in some cases, violent conflict, of the immediate postsocialist period are not necessarily distant memories for many living in the region.

This conference brings together scholars from across the health and social sciences and the humanities to conference will examine the psy-ences and their shifting objects of knowledge and intervention in the countries of East Central Europe and Eurasia.

Sponsored by CEERES, Dept. of Anthropology, Franke Institute for the Humanities, Center for International Studies Norman Wait Harris Fund, International House Global Voices Program, Dept. of Comparative Human Development, and the Workshop on Self and Subjectivity.

Free and open to the public. If you plan to attend please send an email to (or call 773-702-0866).

Persons with disabilities who may need assistance should contact the Office of Programs & External Relations in advance of the program at 773-753-2274.

Conference Program

April 29

Location: Gordon Center for Integrative Science Corner of 57th St. and Drexel (map<;)

9:00 – 9:15 Welcome and introduction Susan Gal (Anthropology, CEERES, University of Chicago) Eugene Raikhel (Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago)

9:15 – 10:45  Panel 1: Expertise enacted and transformed · Benjamin Zajicek (History, Towson University) “Insulin Shock Therapy and the Construction of Therapeutic Effectiveness in Stalin’s Soviet Union.” · Kateřina Lišková (Sociology, Masaryk University), “Socialist Person Normalized: Sexological Discourses in Czechoslovakia Between the 1950s and 1980s.” · Jessica Robbins (Anthropology, University of Michigan), “Socialist and Postsocialist Dimensions of the Geronto-/Psy-ences in Poland: The Case of Universities of the Third Age.” Discussant: Susanne Cohen (Anthropology, University of Chicago)

10:45 — 11:00 Break 11:00 – 12:30 Panel 2: Politics and the clinic · Rebecca Reich (Russian Literature and Culture, University of Cambridge), “Diagnosis, Dissidence and Self-Definition in the Late Soviet Period.” · Shelly Yankovskyy (Anthropology, University of Tennessee), “Political and Economic Transformations in Ukraine: the View from Psychiatry.” · Jack R. Friedman, (Anthropology, University of Oklahoma), “The Sad, The Mad, and The Bad: The Romanian Psychiatric Hospital as Neoliberal Assemblage of Pathology.” Discussant: Tomas Matza (Anthropology, Duke University)

12:30 – 2:30 Lunch

2:30 – 4:00 Panel 3: The politics and ethics of addiction and treatment · Peter Meylakhs, (Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg, Russia), “The Logic of Symbolic Pollution in the Russian Media Discourse on Drugs.” · Jennifer J. Carroll (Anthropology, University of Washington), “For Lack of Wanting: Addiction, Desire, and Personhood in Ukraine.” · Vladimir D. Mendelevich (Psychiatry, Kazan State University) “Bioethical Differences Between Drug Addiction Treatment Professionals Inside And Outside The Russian Federation.” Discussant: Eugene Raikhel (Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago)

4:00 – 4:30 Break

4:30 – 6:00 Keynote address “Trotsky’s Daughter and the Politics of Psy-ence” Alexander Etkind (University of Cambridge)

6:00 – 8:00 Dinner

April 30

Location: Home Room, International House 1414 East 59th Street (map<;)

9:00 – 10:30 Panel 4 – Trauma and care · Hanna Kienzler (Social Science, Health and Medicine, King’s College London) “Health-seeking and healing in the aftermath of war.” · Peter Locke (Anthropology/Global Health, Princeton University), “Surviving the aftermath: trauma, resilience, and chronic insecurity in postwar Sarajevo.” · Namrita S. Singh, (Department of International Health, Social & Behavioral Interventions, Johns Hopkins), “Constructing care-seeking spaces and pathways: identity, integration, and mental illness experiences among protracted internally displaced persons in Georgia.” Discussant: Michael Rasell (Health and Social Sciences, University of Lincoln)

10:30-11:00 Break

11:00 – 12:30 Panel 5 – Subjectivities in transformation · Tomas Matza (Anthropology, Duke University), “Psychological Becoming after Socialism.” · Sonja Luehrmann, (Anthropology, Simon Fraser University), “Innocence and Demographic Crisis: Transposing post-Abortion Syndrome into a Russian Orthodox Key.” · Grzegorz Sokol, (Anthropology, The New School for Social Research), “Mutuality and Selfhood: Depression, the twelve steps, and civil society in Poland” Discussant: Jack R. Friedman (Anthropology, University of Oklahoma)

12:30-2:00 Lunch

2:00-3:30 Panel 6 — Counter-narratives · Hannah Proctor (Humanities, Birkbeck College, University of London), “Ahistorical Materialism: ‘Neuromania’ in Light of Lev Vygotsky and Alexander Luria’s Cultural-Historical Psychology.” · Eugene Raikhel (Comparative Human Development, University of Chicago), “Fear and coding in St. Petersburg: the affective technologies of addiction treatment.” · Khashayar Beigi (Anthropology, University of California at Berkeley) “All the Languages of the Jinn.” Discussant: William Nickell (Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Chicago)

3:30-4:00 Break

4:00 – 5:00 Open discussion

Therapy and Empowerment – Coercion and Punishment

Screenshot from 2013-03-21 16:16:21Historical and Contemporary Perspectives on Work and Occupational Therapy

International Research Symposium, 26–27 June 2013, St Anne’s College, Oxford

Occupational Therapy is concerned with the promotion of health and well-being through activity and work. It has a long and chequered history. Its emergence as a health profession during the early twentieth century has been bound up not only with humanist and medical ideas of occupation as diversion from illness and as creative treatment and individual empowerment, but also with varied social and economic ideals about the role of work in industrial and agricultural societies, and ideologies such as eugenics.

The conference brings together scholars and practitioners working on varied aspects of work and occupation in the history of health and medicine broadly conceived. It provides a platform for critical engagement with the various medical, social and political factors implicated in the development of work and occupational therapy within specific national contexts and in relation to global developments.


Dr Monika Ankele, Germany: ‘The patient’s view on occupational therapy and its practical aspects during the Weimar Period’

Dr Teena Clouston, UK: ‘A comparative study of the working lives of occupational therapists in health and social services settings in the UK’

Dr Sally Denshire, Australia: ‘Re-inscribing Gendered, Racialised, Class Histories Into the Professionalising Project of Occupational Therapy in Australia’

Professor Waltraud Ernst, UK: ‘Work Therapy in British India, c. 1860-1947’

Leisle Ezekiel and Carol Mytton, UK: ‘Changing occupational therapy roles in working with older people over the last 30 years’

Professor John Hall, UK: Psychiatric perspectives on occupation therapy in Englandin the inter-war period

Professor Akira Hashimoto, Japan: The Changing Context of Work and Activity in Mental Hospitals in Modern Japan

Sonja Hinsch, Austria: ‘Work, Welfare and the Disputed Boundaries of Labour in Austria, c. 1880-1938’

Dr Jennifer Laws, UK: ‘A history of therapeutic work and occupation in Britain’

Catherine Lidbetter, UK: ‘The Dorset House Archive and the history of the first school of Occupational Therapy in the UK’

Kathryn McKay, Canada: ‘Patient labour at the Provincial Mental Hospitals in British Columbia, c. 1885-1920’

Dr Thomas Mueller, Germany: ‘Work therapy in comparative perspective, c. 1880-1945’

Professor Osamu Nakamura, Japan: ‘The problem of inoccupation and isolation of mentally ill patients in Japan

Dr Leonard Smith, UK: ‘Work as Treatment in British West Indian Lunatic Asylums, 1860-1900’

Dr Valentin-Veron Toma, Romania: ‘Labour and occupation as therapeutic tools in Romanian psychiatry under communism, c. 1945-1989’

Dr Farzaneh Yazdani, UK: ‘Global, International and Local Factors in Establishing and Developing a Profession in Iran and Jordan’

Contact for booking inquiries:
Ms Emma Hallet or Professor Waltraud Ernst

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