First, though, a gripe provoked by the author’s choice of title, Shrinks. This term—that he uses repeatedly in referring to his professional colleagues—vexes anyone who thinks psychiatry is a serious profession. Would a contemporary surgeon in a book intended to illuminate modern surgical practice entitle it and refer to his fellows as “saw-bones”?
In the “story of diagnosis” section, he describes how psychiatrists early in the last century based their diagnostic impressions on such theories of mind as psychoanalysis. A casual and mostly advisory official diagnostic scheme worked for them as long as that approach was the only treatment.
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