Posts Tagged ‘ Greece ’

New Book: C. Thumiger, A History of the Mind and Mental Health in Classical Greek Medical Thought



Historian Chiara Thumiger – Wellcome Trust Medical Humanities Fellow in the Department of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Warwick and a Gastwissenschaftlerin in the Department of Classical Philology at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin – has just published a new book with Cambridge University Press entitled A History of the Mind and Mental Health in Classical Greek Medical Thought. The description reads:

The Hippocratic texts and other contemporary medical sources have often been overlooked in discussions of ancient psychology. They have been considered to be more mechanical and less detailed than poetic and philosophical representations, as well as later medical texts such as those of Galen. This book does justice to these early medical accounts by demonstrating their richness and sophistication, their many connections with other contemporary cultural products and the indebtedness of later medicine to their observations. In addition, it reads these sources not only as archaeological documents but also in the light of methodological discussions that are fundamental to the histories of psychiatry and psychology. As a result of this approach, the book will be important for scholars of these disciplines as well as those of Greek literature and philosophy, strongly advocating the relevance of ancient ideas to modern debates.


New Issue of Social History of Medicine

4.coverThe latest issue of Social History of Medicine contains at least one article that interests the readers of h-madness directly.

Mental Hygiene and Child Guidance in Post-war Greece: The Case of the Centre for Mental Health and Research, 1956–1970 by Despo Kritsotaki

This paper focuses on the Centre for Mental Health and Research, an organisation launched in Athens in 1956 and that is still operational today. Its story up to 1970 is analysed as a case study of the development of mental hygiene and child guidance in Greece, where international movements became relevant within the context of the social transformations of the post-war period. Seizing the opportunities created by the ‘modernisation’ of Greece and the anxiety around it, the Centre managed to secure funding and develop a number of services and activities. It is concluded that, although it was not successful in its broader social projects, it had an impact at the micro-level of the family and played a part in opening up new possibilities for the ‘psy’ disciplines in post-war Greece beyond the pathological and the hospital, so addressing the ‘normal’ individual and society as a whole.

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