Author Archive

Colloquium – Traumatisme des mémoires et mémoire des traumatismes. Autour de la guerre d’Algérie (11 octobre 2017, Paris)


The Société Franco-Algérienne de Psychiatrie organises a colloquium about ‘Traumatisme des mémoires et mémoire des traumatismes. Autour de la guerre d’Algérie’ that might be of interest to H-Madness readers. The conference will be held on the 11th of October 2017 at the Auditorium de l’Hôpital Européen Georges Pompidou in Paris.

To inscribe for the colloquium visit Below you find the abstract and the programme of the conference.

Continue reading

Conference report – Madness in Civilization: Current research into the history of psychiatry in the Low Countries

Madness II

On the second of June 2017 a symposium was held in Amsterdam about madness in civilization. The conference aim was to evaluate the history of madness in the Netherlands, not only focussing on the historiography of this field but also on new and ongoing research. A recap of the symposium can be found here.




New issue – Sciences sociales et santé


A new issue of Sciences sociales et Santé has appeared and includes two articles that could be of interest to h-madness readers.

Nicolas Henckes, Entre tutelle et assistance : le débat sur la réforme de la loi de 1838 sur les aliénés des années 1870 aux années 1910.

Jean-Christophe Coffin, L’exploration de l’assistance psychiatrique française. Jalons pour une reformulation.




Conference – The Body Politics: States in the History of Medicine and Health. Provisional programme online

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 10.17.15

The European Association for the History of Medicine and Health organises the conference The Body Politics: States in the History of Medicine and Health, which will be held from the 30th of August until the 2nd of september in Bucharest. The provisional conference programme has appeared online and incorporates a few sessions that could be of interest to H-Madness readers (see below). For a full overview of all the panels see here. 

Thursday, August 31st
11.00‐13.00 PANEL 1 ‐ ETHICS AND EXPERTISE. Chair: Frank Huisman (Main Amphitheatre )
  • State-authorized medical ethics: the disciplinary function of the British General Medical Council, 1858‐1914 (Andreas‐Holger Maehle)
  • ‘“A misconception of educational psychologists’ work”: expertise, child psychology and the aftermath of the 1967 Summerfield Report’ (Andrew Burchell)
  • Medical Ethics in a Modern Society. The ‘free medical profession’ and the Dutch state, 1945‐ 1980 (Noortje Jacobs)
  • State and expertise. The emergence of psychiatry as legal expertise in Europe in the 1820s (Svein Atle Skålevåg)

Continue reading

New book – Vagueness in Psychiatry


The book Vagueness in Psychiatry could be of interest to H-Madness readers. It is edited by Geert Keil, Lara Keuck, and Rico Hauswald, and published by Oxford University Press. The abstract reads:

In psychiatry there is no sharp boundary between the normal and the pathological. Although clear cases abound, it is often indeterminate whether a particular condition does or does not qualify as a mental disorder. For example, definitions of subthreshold disorders and of the prodromal stages of diseases are notoriously contentious.

Philosophers and linguists call concepts that lack sharp boundaries, and thus admit of borderline cases, vague. Although blurred boundaries between the normal and the pathological are a recurrent theme in many publications concerned with the classification of mental disorders, systematic approaches that take into account philosophical reflections on vagueness are rare. This book provides interdisciplinary discussions about vagueness in psychiatry by bringing together scholars from psychiatry, psychology, philosophy, history, and law. It draws together various lines of inquiry into the nature of gradations between mental health and disease and discusses the individual and societal consequences of dealing with blurred boundaries in medical practice, forensic psychiatry, and beyond.

Part I starts with an overview chapter that helps readers to navigate through the philosophy of vagueness and through the various debates surrounding demarcation problems in the classification and diagnosis of mental illness. Part II encompasses historical and recent philosophical positions on gradualist approaches to health and disease. Part III approaches the vagueness of present psychiatric classification systems and the debates concerning their revision by scrutinizing controversial categories such as post-traumatic stress disorder and by looking into the difficulties of day-to-day diagnostic and therapeutic practice. Part IV finally focuses on social, moral, and legal implications that arise when being mentally ill is a matter of degree.



Conference – Medikalisierte Kindheiten. Die neue Sorge um das Kind vom ausgehenden 19. bis ins späte 20. Jahrhundert (29/06/17-01/07/17, Innsbruck)

Screen Shot 2017-05-31 at 08.42.34

The conference Medikalisierte Kindheiten. Die neue Sorge um das Kind vom ausgehenden 19. bis ins späte 20. Jahrhundert could be of interest to H-Madness readers. The conference will take place from 29.06.2017 until 01.07.2017 and will be held at Innsbruck, Institut für Erziehungswissenschaft. You can register here. The abstract and programme are as follows:


Die jüngere Forschung im Umfeld der Auseinandersetzungen über den gewaltförmigen Umgang mit Kindern und Jugendlichen in Fürsorgeerziehungseinrichtungen der Nachkriegsjahre stellt die Sorge um das “erziehungsschwierige” Kind als ein trans-disziplinäres Projekt der Moderne heraus, in welchem differente Wissensordnungen wie die Psychiatrie und die Pädiatrie, die Pädagogik und die Psychologie, die Kriminologie und Jurisdiktion sowie die Sexual- und Bevölkerungswissenschaften das diskursiv auszuhandeln begannen, was am Kind als gesund oder krank, normal oder abweichend anzusehen sei. Voreinem medikalen Hintergrund und in wechselnder Leaderschaft prägten diese Wissenschaftszweige die Debatten über Kinderschutz und Kindergesundheit und fanden in Schulen, Heimen, Kliniken, Kinderbeobachtungsstellen oder Einrichtungen der Säuglings- und Kinderfürsorge ihre räumliche Gestalt und institutionalisierte Wirkung. Ihr regulatorisches Interesse richtete sich auf den Körper, den Geist und die Ausdrucksformen von Kindern (und Jugendlichen) in Entwicklungs- und/oder Erziehungs-schwierigkeiten. Als besonders einflussreich haben sich dabei die medizinischen Fächer Pädiatrie und Psychiatrie sowie hybride Teilfächer wie die Heil- oder Sonderpädagogik erwiesen.

Continue reading

Conference – The Intersection of Psychology and History: Psychohistory In The Age Of Trump (31/05/17 to 2/06/17, New York University)

The 40th Annual Conference of the International Psychohistorical Association about The Intersection of Psychology and History: Psychohistory In The Age Of Trump, might be of interest to H-Madness readers might be of interest to H-Madness readers. The conference wil be held from 31/05/17 to 2/06/17 at the New York University’s Kimmel Center. The extensive programma of the conference can be found here.

The primary theme will be The Intersection of Psychology and History with an emphasis on The Age of Trump. There will be 15 presentations concerning the President or related topics. These include Trump and Foreign Policy by historian Peter Kuznick, co-author of The Untold History of the United States, written with director Oliver Stone, and Gaslighting from the Personal to the Political, by Yale’s Robin Stern and psychoanalyst Judith Logue. Dr. Stern is author of The Gaslighting Effect.  Narcissism in the Age of Trump will be presented by Elizabeth Lunbeck, author of The Americanization of Narcissism.

Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: