The Myth of Psychotherapy: Mental Healing as Religion, Rhetoric, and Repression

By Thomas Szasz
Read by Robin Lawson

8.53 Hours 12/01/1998 unabridged
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Until recent years, “bad” and “immoral” were terms used to describe people who are now referred to as “sick” and “in need of treatment.” Moral and religious perspectives have been clearly replaced by medical and therapeutic rhetoric. It is little wonder that the world is plagued by legions of rapists, drug users, murderers, thieves, child abusers—you name it—all of whom are now referred to as having one form or another of “addiction,” and are thus either “sick” or suffering from “mental illness.” Accordingly, modern psychotherapists claim that these are in need of specialized “therapy” or “treatment,” to help them “cope with their disease.” Moral relativism-bolstered by psychotherapy-has prevailed over the traditional ideas of self-control, individual responsibility, and moral culpability.Thomas Szasz moves to demythologize psychotherapy itself, and he does it in a most provocative manner.

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Summary

Summary

Until recent years, “bad” and “immoral” were terms used to describe people who are now referred to as “sick” and “in need of treatment.” Moral and religious perspectives have been clearly replaced by medical and therapeutic rhetoric. It is little wonder that the world is plagued by legions of rapists, drug users, murderers, thieves, child abusers—you name it—all of whom are now referred to as having one form or another of “addiction,” and are thus either “sick” or suffering from “mental illness.” Accordingly, modern psychotherapists claim that these are in need of specialized “therapy” or “treatment,” to help them “cope with their disease.” Moral relativism-bolstered by psychotherapy-has prevailed over the traditional ideas of self-control, individual responsibility, and moral culpability.Thomas Szasz moves to demythologize psychotherapy itself, and he does it in a most provocative manner.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Szasz’s important book will test the self-insight of anyone involved in the therapeutic process.” Publishers Weekly

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Thomas Szasz

Thomas Szasz is professor emeritus of psychiatry at the State University of New York’s Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, New York. His books include Law, Liberty, and Psychiatry; The Manufacture of Madness; Ideology and Insanity; Ceremonial Chemistry; The Myth of Psychotherapy; Pharmacracy, and many more.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction
Runtime: 8.53
Audience: Adult
Language: English