Browning: Grateful for the social sciences | Chroniclers


Szasz deliberately called his review “The Myth of Mental Illness.”

The major problem for him was to interpret all deviant, unproductive and unsatisfying behaviors as literal diseases based on biology.

As a result, Szasz, a practicing psychiatrist, grew to prefer a more humanistic psychotherapeutic approach that can be compared to Carl Roger’s client-centered therapy, or even Viktor Frankl’s logotherapy.

This type of therapy is intended to help the patient become a fully functional independent person. Instead of educating the public on such an alternative, Fischer leaves the reader only with conspiratorial skepticism, not only towards clinicians, but also towards social scientists in general.

The title of Fisher is very misleading. In an attempt to criticize “social science research,” he only alluded to vague societal problems with little or no empirical evidence for their existence.

Also, he did not specify which social science, in particular, is a myth. However, it focuses on the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition” (DSM-V). His argument on this “pathologizing the normal” is a legitimate concern but is overstated and should not be directed at the DSM-V as a whole.

It is important to note that there is a difference between the application of the social sciences and the social sciences per se. Of course, the application can be corrupted by the biases of the practitioners. But instead of explaining why a functioning society might require an imperfect diagnostic manual rather than no diagnostic manual at all, Fisher describes the DSM-V as a way for corrupt businessmen to accumulate wealth. .


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