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Psychiatry in descent: Darwin and the Brownes

  • Tom Walmsley (a1)
Extract

Charles Darwin (1809–1882) enjoys an uneasy position in the history of psychiatry. In general terms, he showed a personal interest in the plight of the mentally ill and an astute empathy for psychiatric patients. On the other hand, he has generated derogatory views of insanity, especially through the writings of English social philosophers like Herbert Spencer and Samuel Butler, the Italian School of “criminal anthropology” and French alienists including Victor Magnan and Benedict Morel.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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Beer, G. (1983) Darwin's Plots: evolutionary narrative in Darwin, George Eliot and nineteenth century fiction. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Bowlby, J. (1990) Charles Darwin: a biography. London: Hutchinson.
Browne, J. (1985) Darwin and the face of madness. In The Anatomy of Madness, volume 1, (eds. Bynum, Porter and Shepherd, ). London: Tavistock.
Darwin, F. (ed) (1987) The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, including an autobiographical chapter. London: Murray.
Desmond, A. & Moore, J. (1991) Darwin. London: Michael Joseph.
Gruber, H. E. (1981) Darwin on Man: a psychological study of scientific creativity. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Hunter, R. & Macalpine, I. (1963) Three Hundred Years of Psychiatry 1535–1860, pp. 865869. London: Oxford University Press.
Scull, A. (1991) The Asylum as Utopia: W.A.F. Browne and the mid-nineteenth century consolidation of psychiatry. London: Tavistock/Routledge.
Showalter, E. (1987) The Female Malady: women, madness and English culture 1830–1980. London: Virago Press.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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Psychiatry in descent: Darwin and the Brownes

  • Tom Walmsley (a1)
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