Posts Tagged ‘ 21st century ’

New book – Governing Habits: Treating Alcoholism in the Post-Soviet Clinic

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The book Governing Habits: Treating Alcoholism in the Post-Soviet Clinic by Eugene Raikhel could be of interest to H-madness readers. The abstract on the website of Cornell University Press reads:

Critics of narcology—as addiction medicine is called in Russia—decry it as being “backward,” hopelessly behind contemporary global medical practices in relation to addiction and substance abuse, and assume that its practitioners lack both professionalism and expertise. On the basis of his research in a range of clinical institutions managing substance abuse in St. Petersburg, Eugene Raikhel increasingly came to understand that these assumptions and critiques obscured more than they revealed. Governing Habits is an ethnography of extraordinary sensitivity and awareness that shows how therapeutic practice and expertise is expressed in the highly specific, yet rapidly transforming milieu of hospitals, clinics, and rehabilitation centers in post­-Soviet Russia. Rather than interpreting narcology as a Soviet survival or a local clinical world on the wane in the face of globalizing evidence-based medicine, Raikhel examines the transformation of the medical management of alcoholism in Russia over the past twenty years.

The website New Books Network also did an interview with the author. You can listen to this 60-minute podcast here.

This information was retrieved from the blog Advances in the history of psychology.

Psychiatry’s Identity Crisis

American psychiatry is facing an identity crisis, writes Cornell psychiatrist Richard A. Friedman in a New York Times opinion piece published this week:

AMERICAN psychiatry is facing a quandary: Despite a vast investment in basic neuroscience research and its rich intellectual promise, we have little to show for it on the treatment front.

With few exceptions, every major class of current psychotropic drugs — antidepressants, antipsychotics, anti-anxiety medications — basically targets the same receptors and neurotransmitters in the brain as did their precursors, which were developed in the 1950s and 1960s.

Sure, the newer drugs are generally safer and more tolerable than the older ones, but they are no more effective.

To read the rest of this article, click here.

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