Therapy and empowerment, coercion and punishment. Historical and contemporary perspectives on work, psychiatry and society
in Work, psychiatry and society, c. 1750–2015
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This chapter discusses the conceptual and methodological concerns connected with the central themes of the book. It reflects on varied definitions of human activity as labour, work and action, from the Ancients to Adam Smith, Karl Marx, and Hannah Arendt, contrasting these with NAZI ideas on forced labour and its supposedly liberating effects. The ways in which work and activity have been integral to medical ideas and practices in both Western and non-Western healing traditions and psychiatric regimes are explored, and the different themes covered by the contributors to the book are presented.

Editor: Waltraud Ernst


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