Patient work and family care at Iwakura, Japan, c. 1799–1970
in Work, psychiatry and society, c. 1750–2015
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This chapter focuses on family care of mentally ill patients at Iwakura, Kyoto, Japan. It argues that family care became popular from the late eighteenth century because it contributed to the local economy by providing employment opportunities for host families and increased demand for and consumption of local products by patients. The emphasis was on care rather than medical treatment, and only few patients engaged in some kind of work, because paying patients and their families were comparatively rich and hence not overly inclined to favour physical labour. It also argues that it became not so popular after many villagers there began to commute to Kyoto using a railway that opened in 1928 and their livelihood depended less on care of the patients as before.

Editor: Waltraud Ernst


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