A new piece in History of Psychiatry may interest AHP readers: “Shock therapies in Spain (1939–1952) after the Civil War: Santa Isabel National Mental Asylum in Leganés,” Ana Conseglieri, Olga Villasante. Abstract:
The first third of the twentieth century changed the therapeutical landscape with the emergence of new treatments for the mentally ill in asylums. However, the historiography of their use in Spanish psychiatric establishments has been scarcely studied. The popularization of barbiturate sleep therapies, insulin shock, cardiazol therapy, electroshock and leucotomy spread from the beginning of the century. However, the Spanish Civil War and Spain’s isolation during Franco’s autarky (1939–52) made their implementation difficult. Through historiographic research using medical records as documentary sources, this work analyses the socio-demographic conditions of the asylum population during the first decade of Franco’s dictatorship. The treatments used in Leganés Mental Asylum are described and are compared with those used in other Spanish psychiatric institutions.