Catalogue


Mind games [electronic resource] : American culture and the birth of psychotherapy /
Eric Caplan.
imprint
Berkeley, Calif. : University of California Press, c1998.
description
xiii, 242 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0520211693 (alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
More Details
imprint
Berkeley, Calif. : University of California Press, c1998.
isbn
0520211693 (alk. paper)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
7995391
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 209-235) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
An award-winning teacher and former William Rainey Harper Fellow, Eric Caplan has taught at the University of Michigan, the University of Chicago, and Wesleyan University. He is currently on staff at the Pfizer Research University
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1999-05-15:
Caplan's cleverly titled and highly instructive study carefully analyzes the history of a mainstream American social and cultural institution: psychotherapy. This well-researched and skillfully written work shatters the falsehood that the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, played the pivotal role in the origin of American psychotherapy. Breaking new ground, Caplan details the early history of mental treatments by religious zealots (e.g., faith-healers, idiosyncratic clergymen, Christian Scientists) and an assortment of lay "mind-curists" as they adjured a disinclined medical community to accede to a new place for the mind in the treatment of mental disorders. Indeed, these indigenous advocates of alternative medicine, not doctors, laid the foundations for a unique, singular American variety of psychotherapy. The author shows how the rapidly expanding mental-medical marketplace of the early 1900s obliged the medical community's elites, and everyday physicians, to depart from their restrictive dependence on physical treatments to deal with mental dysfunctions. Supplying professionally authorized alternatives to the techniques provided by the expanding ranks of nonmedical competitors, they sought to acquire for themselves a commanding position in a disregarded market. In doing so, they elevated psychotherapy to a central position in American culture. Undergraduates and above. W. T. Howard; Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, May 1999
Choice, June 1999
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Unpaid Annotation
Eric Caplan's fascinating exploration of Victorian culture in the United States shatters the myth of Freud's seminal role in the creation of American psychotherapy. Resurrecting the long-buried "prehistory" of American mental therapeutics, "Mind Games tells the remarkable story of how a widely assorted group of actors--none of them hailing from Vienna or from any other European city--compelled a reluctant medical profession to accept a new role for the mind in medicine. By the time Freud first set foot on American soil in 1909, as Caplan demonstrates, psychotherapy was already integrally woven into the fabric of American culture and medicine.What came to be known as psychotherapy emerged in the face of considerable opposition, much--indeed most--of which was generated by the medical profession itself. Caplan examines the contentious interplay within the American medical community, as well as between American physicians and their lay rivals, who included faith-healers, mind-curists, Christian Scientists, and Protestant ministers. These early practitioners of alternative medicine ultimately laid the groundwork for a distinctive and much heralded American type of psychotherapy. Its grudging acceptance by both medical elites and rank and file physicians signified their understanding that reliance on physical therapies to treat nervous and mental symptoms compromised their capacity to treat--and compete--effectively in a rapidly expanding mental-medical marketpl
Main Description
Eric Caplan's fascinating exploration of Victorian culture in the United States shatters the myth of Freud's seminal role in the creation of American psychotherapy. Resurrecting the long-buried "prehistory" of American mental therapeutics, Mind Games tells the remarkable story of how a widely assorted group of actors--none of them hailing from Vienna or from any other European city--compelled a reluctant medical profession to accept a new role for the mind in medicine. By the time Freud first set foot on American soil in 1909, as Caplan demonstrates, psychotherapy was already integrally woven into the fabric of American culture and medicine. What came to be known as psychotherapy emerged in the face of considerable opposition, much--indeed most--of which was generated by the medical profession itself. Caplan examines the contentious interplay within the American medical community, as well as between American physicians and their lay rivals, who included faith-healers, mind-curists, Christian Scientists, and Protestant ministers. These early practitioners of alternative medicine ultimately laid the groundwork for a distinctive and much heralded American type of psychotherapy. Its grudging acceptance by both medical elites and rank and file physicians signified their understanding that reliance on physical therapies to treat nervous and mental symptoms compromised their capacity to treat--and compete--effectively in a rapidly expanding mental-medical marketplace. Mind Games shows how psychotherapy came to occupy its central position in mainstream American culture.
Long Description
Eric Caplan's fascinating exploration of Victorian culture in the United States shatters the myth of Freud's seminal role in the creation of American psychotherapy. Resurrecting the long-buried "prehistory" of American mental therapeutics,Mind Gamestells the remarkable story of how a widely assorted group of actors--none of them hailing from Vienna or from any other European city--compelled a reluctant medical profession to accept a new role for the mind in medicine. By the time Freud first set foot on American soil in 1909, as Caplan demonstrates, psychotherapy was already integrally woven into the fabric of American culture and medicine. What came to be known as psychotherapy emerged in the face of considerable opposition, much--indeed most--of which was generated by the medical profession itself. Caplan examines the contentious interplay within the American medical community, as well as between American physicians and their lay rivals, who included faith-healers, mind-curists, Christian Scientists, and Protestant ministers. These early practitioners of alternative medicine ultimately laid the groundwork for a distinctive and much heralded American type of psychotherapy. Its grudging acceptance by both medical elites and rank and file physicians signified their understanding that reliance on physical therapies to treat nervous and mental symptoms compromised their capacity to treat--and compete--effectively in a rapidly expanding mental-medical marketplace.Mind Gamesshows how psychotherapy came to occupy its central position in mainstream American culture.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Trains, Brains, and Sprains: Railway Spine and the Origins of Psychoneurosesp. 11
Psychosomatic Backlashp. 17
From the Spine to the Brain: A Functional Reassessmentp. 19
Railway Surgeons Respondp. 26
Suggestion and American Railway Surgeryp. 32
Epiloguep. 35
Avoiding Psychotherapy: Neurasthenia and the Limits of Somatic Therapyp. 37
The Significance of Patient-Centered Therapeuticsp. 40
The Role of Rapportp. 42
Neurasthenic Therapy: Soma not Psychep. 45
Inventing Psychotherapy: The American Mind Cure Movement, 1830-1900p. 61
Mental Healing in America: Controversies and Consensusp. 65
The Early Disciples: Warren Felt Evans and Mary Baker Eddyp. 69
Midwestern Mind Curep. 76
New Thought and the Challenge to Christian Sciencep. 78
Physicians Respondp. 83
Flirting with Psychotherapy: Somatic Intransigence and the "Advanced Guard"p. 89
Demedicalizing the Mindp. 90
The Maintenance of Psychological Medicinep. 93
Somatic Intransigencep. 95
The Advanced Guard and the Challenge to Somaticismp. 98
Enduring Somaticism: 1906-1908p. 113
Embracing Psychotherapy: The Emmanuel Movement and the American Medical Professionp. 117
The Program Beginsp. 122
The Movement Spreadsp. 123
In the Public Eyep. 125
Medical Opposition: The Quest for Controlp. 131
The New York and Boston Controversiesp. 136
Clerical Oppositionp. 143
Psychological Oppositionp. 145
Final Defensep. 146
Conclusionp. 149
Notesp. 153
Selected Bibliographyp. 209
Indexp. 237
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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