Tag Archives: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders

The literary breakdown in Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch

Carol-Ann Farkas Boston, Massachusetts, United States   The Goldfinch By Carel Fabritius. 1654. Mauritshuis. Public Domain. Wikimedia. I. Diagnostically speaking, the “nervous” or “mental” breakdown is not a thing. The term has never been formally used in psychology, which has long preferred specific, definable categorizations of symptoms and conditions: stress, fatigue, anxiety, depression, trauma.1 And yet […]

Nikolai Gogol’s The Diary of a Madman

James Franklin Chicago, Illinois, USA Nikolai Gogol Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol (1809–1852) was a member of the first wave of great Russian authors of the nineteenth century. Born in a Ukrainian Cossack village then part of the Russian Empire, he made his way to Saint Petersburg where he found his métier in the short story; a […]

Mental Health in Michel Foucault’s The Birth of the Clinic and the limits of Medical Positivism

Taylor Tso St. Louis, Missouri, USA    “The Madhouse (Casa de locos). Francisco de Goya. In The Birth of the Clinic, Michel Foucault traces the history of our present-day understanding of disease. One of the most significant and more recent problems this understanding had to confront was the pre-nineteenth century outlook that “neuroses and essential […]