Tag Archives: phenomenology

June Issue of History of Psychiatry Now Online

The June 2012 issue of History of Psychiatry is now online. Include in this issue are articles on R.D. Laing’s (right) theological influences, psychiatric diagnosis at Maudsley Hospital during the interwar years, addiction and criminal responsibility in Germany, phenomenological and community psychiatry, the psychology of Antarctic exploration, and Russian forensic psychiatry. Full titles, authors, and abstracts follow below.

“R.D. Laing’s theological hinterland: The contrast between mysticism and communion,” by Gavin Miller. The abstract reads,

Contrasting elements in R.D. Laing’s psychiatry can be traced to two kinds of Christian theology: mystical theology and corporate theology. On one hand, Laing’s mystical theology combined with psychoanalytic theory, to provide a New Age psychotherapeutic account of the recovery of authentic selfhood via metanoia. On the other, his incarnational, corporate theology promoted social inclusion of the mentally ill, particularly via therapeutic communities. For Laing, as for other post-war British Christians, a turn inwards, to mysticism and the sacralization of the self, and a turn outwards, to social and political activism, were ways of negotiating with the decline of traditional Christianity.

“Psychiatric case notes: Symptoms of mental illness and their attribution at the Maudsley Hospital, 1924–35,” by Edgar Jones, Shahina Rahman, and Brian Everitt. The abstract reads,

Case notes of patients treated at the Maudsley Hospital during the interwar period provided data about diagnosis, symptoms and beliefs about mental illness. Continue reading June Issue of History of Psychiatry Now Online

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The Demise of Dutch Phenomenological Psych

van HezewijkIn a recent issue of History of Psychology, 11(3), René van Hezewijk (pictured left) and Hank Stam chart the rise and fall of the Utrecht school of phenomenological psychology.

Before and after World War II, a loose movement within Dutch psychology solidified as a nascent phenomenological psychology. Dutch phenomenological psychologists attempted to generate an understanding of psychology that was based on Husserlian interpretations of phenomenological philosophy. This movement came to a halt in the 1960s, even though it had been exported to North America and elsewhere as “phenomenological psychology.” Frequently referred to as the “Utrecht school,” most of the activity of the group was centered at Utrecht University. In this article, the authors examine the role played by Johannes Linschoten in both aspects of the development of a phenomenological psychology: its rise in North America and Europe, and its institutional demise. By the time of his early death in 1964, Linschoten had cast considerable doubt on the possibilities of a purely phenomenological psychology. Nonetheless, his own empirical work, especially his 1956 dissertation published in German, can be seen to be a form of empiricism inspired by phenomenology but that clearly distanced itself from the more elitist and esoteric aspects of Dutch phenomenological psychology.

This essay updates an earlier paper delivered at ESHHS in 2001 by van Hezewijk, Stam, and Panhuysen — “Existential questions: no, one, or two Utrecht schools?” — available for download at HTP Prints (PDF).

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