Skip to main content
×
×
Home

On the Mechanism of Mental Processes, with Special Reference to Emotional Control

  • George Rutherford Jeffrey (a1)
Extract

Some psychiatrists attribute great importance to the neuro-insane diathesis as a factor in the causation of insanity, whilst others belittle its influence. The term is misleading, for it suggests that this diathesis is confined solely to the mentally afflicted, and, further, its precise meaning is vague. A person is generally accused of possessing the neuro-insane diathesis if he presents a temperament which appreciably diverges from the mean of the sanguine and of the phlegmatic; if his actions are unduly strenuous or torpid, his expressions unwarrantably enthusiastic or lukewarm, his moods very variable or religiously constant; in brief, the neuro-insane diathesis may be resolved into a tendency to psychic or motor reaction disproportionate to the exciting stimulus. In common speech the person is emotional. But every person who is emotional is not an incipient lunatic. The faculty of conceiving undue enthusiasm, of persevering unfalteringly in ambition, in order to attain the acme of success in any sphere of life, demands an emotional power in excess of the normal. It is ridiculous thus to brand the best men of all nations as possessors of the neuro-insane diathesis. The term, with its plausible air of scientific accusation, is misleading and vague, and should be wholly discarded. All that psychiatrists wish to convey by it may be more accurately and more descriptively called the emotional diathesis.

Copyright
References
Hide All
(1) Jeffrey, , Journal of Mental Science, April, 1910, p. 285.
(2) McDougall, W., Brain, 1909, Part 127, Vol. xxii.
(3) Jeffrey, , loc. cit.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

The British Journal of Psychiatry
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 2514-9946
  • URL: /core/journals/the-british-journal-of-psychiatry
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 4 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 19th February 2018 - 24th June 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

On the Mechanism of Mental Processes, with Special Reference to Emotional Control

  • George Rutherford Jeffrey (a1)
Submit a response

eLetters

No eLetters have been published for this article.

×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *