The Structure of Psychiatric Practice

Akihito Suzuki

in Madness at Home

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2006 | ISBN: 9780520245808
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520932210 | DOI:
The Structure of Psychiatric Practice

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter looks into the clinical aspects of the relationship between the doctor and the family, and establishes that doctors were intellectually dependent on the information provided by the families despite the fervent aspiration to scientific autonomy expressed in the printed pages of medical treatises. George Man Burrows was one of the most successful psychiatric practitioners in London. The chapter first examines his theory and practice, focusing particularly on the contradiction between what Burrows preached and what he actually did—a contradiction which largely echoed that between medical science and medical practice. It then shows that the two cases of wrongful confinement in which Burrows was involved were outcomes of this contradiction. The chapter concludes by assessing some impacts the Burrows case had, suggesting that English alienists at this time became clearly aware of the indispensable but troublesome role of the family in their business.

Keywords: doctors; family; psychiatrists; George Man Burrow; medical practice; wrongful confinement

Chapter.  11010 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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