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Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800

Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800

Hardback

By (author) Lisa Appignanesi

List price $31.33

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  • Publisher: Virago Press Ltd
  • Format: Hardback | 560 pages
  • Dimensions: 153mm x 234mm
  • Publication date: 14 February 2008
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1844082334
  • ISBN 13: 9781844082339
  • Illustrations note: Integrated: 5, integrated
  • Sales rank: 462,659

Product description

From the depression suffered by Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath to the mental anguish and addictions of iconic beauties Zelda Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe. From Theroigne de Mericourt, Fury of the Gironde, who descended from the bloody triumphs of the French Revolution to untameable insanity in La Salpetriere asylum, to Mary Lamb, sister of Charles, who in the throes of a nervous breakdown turned on her mother with a kitchen knife. From Freud and Jung to Lacan and the new women-centred therapies. This is the story of how we have understood extreme states of mind over the last two hundred years and how we conceive of them today, when more and more of our inner life and emotions have become a matter for medics and therapists. Here too is the story of the professions that have grown up to offer treatment, of how over the years symptoms and diagnoses have developed together to create fashions in illness and how treatments have succeeded orsometimes failed, even when those providing care were women too. MAD, BAD AND SAD takes us on a fascinating journey through the fragile, extraordinary human mind.

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Author information

Lisa Appignanesi was born in Poland and grew up in France and Canada. A novelist an writer, she is former deputy director of the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, chair of the Freud Museum and deputy president of English PEN.

Review quote

** 'Informative in startling ways, and never dull in the academic way, Appignanesi's genuinely new History of the Mind Doctors is a subtle and accessible account of that perhaps most daunting of modern relationships, the one between the Mind Doctor and his female patient. Because Appignanesi has a complex story to tell there is no blaming at work in this wonderful book, but a shrewd and sympathetic apprehension of what is at stake in the difficult histories of both the Mind Doctors and those they seek to help. It is a remarkable achievement' Adam Phillips ** 'Marvellous. At last! A serious, well-researched book on this important subject' Pamela Stephenson