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Cruel Compassion: Psychiatric Control of Society's Unwanted

4.38  ·  Rating Details ·  13 Ratings  ·  1 Review
The renowned gadfly of psychiatry examines the growing practice of coercing individuals (especially adults economically dependent on others) allegedly in their own best interest. Demonstrates how moral man has been replaced by mental patient in modern society, how sin has been converted to mental illness as a way of controlling undesirables. Deals with psychiatry as a ...more
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Published February 1st 1998 by Syracuse University Press (first published 1994)
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Mel Foster
Jul 25, 2015 Mel Foster rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: civil libertarians, mental health advocates and workers, social workers
Szasz's first book was The Myth of Mental Illness: Foundations of a Theory of Personal Conduct. The title of that first work adumbrates the main points of Szasz's later work. He believes that mental patients should not face coercive treatment, involuntary commitment, or involuntary medication unless and until they have committed a criminal offense. Let me rephrase that--his beef is even bigger. Coercive psychiatry is a contradiction in terms to Szasz, and those criminal issues are best dealt ...more
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Thomas Stephen Szasz (pronounced /sas/; born April 15, 1920 in Budapest, Hungary) was a psychiatrist and academic. He was Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the State University of New York Health Science Center in Syracuse, New York. He was a prominent figure in the antipsychiatry movement, a well-known social critic of the moral and scientific foundations of psychiatry, and of the social ...more
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“The young and the old are defenseless against relatives who want to get rid of them by casting them in the role of mental patient,and against psychiatrists whose livelihood depends on defining them as mentally ill.” 8 likes
“The cruelty intrinsic to the workhouse system was excused by the need to discourage idleness, much as the malice intrinsic to the mental hospital system has been excused by the need to provide treatment.” 5 likes
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