Metapsychology Online Reviews - Volume 18, Number 48
 
Featured Reviews
The Good Life by Graham MusicThe Good Life
by Graham Music
Tue, Oct 28th 2014
10% Happier by Dan Harris10% Happier
by Dan Harris
Tue, Oct 28th 2014
The Roman Search for Wisdom by Michael K. KelloggThe Roman Search for Wisdom
by Michael K. Kellogg
Tue, Oct 21st 2014
 
Moral Imagination
Essays
By David Bromwich
Review by Bob Lane, MA on Tue, Nov 25th 2014.
Moral Imagination by David BromwichDavid Bromwich is Sterling Professor of English at Yale University who has written widely on language and politics, language and power. The epigram to the current book comes from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, "Th'abuse of greatness is when it disjoins/ Remorse from power. That seems to strike the perfect tone for the dozen essays that follow. Remorse, of course, means deep and painful regret for wrongdoing; and is an internal emotion, a strong feeling based on a sense of right and wrong. We are learning in this century that feelings of right and wrong may indeed be like other innate faculties t
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The Ethics of the Family
By Stephen Scales, Adam Potthast, and Linda Oravecz (Editors)
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 25th 2014.
The Ethics of the Family by Stephen Scales, Adam Potthast, and Linda Oravecz (Editors)This large edited collection has 432 pages.  It starts with a one-hundred page introduction to moral theory and its relevance to family ethics, written by the editors. It is followed by 24 papers by academics from a variety of kinds of department; most are in philosophy by several are in sociology, law, or communication.  The papers are based mainly on conferences papers from the 10th International Conference on Ethics Across the Curriculum: "The Ethics of the Family".  This collection has some interesting papers, some useful papers, and some that are worth skipping. It is unl
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Depression Doesn't Always Have to Be Depressing
By James R. Holmes
Review by Elin Weiss on Tue, Nov 25th 2014.
Depression Doesn't Always Have to Be Depressing by James R. Holmes Written in the style of a self-help book, Depression Doesn't Always Have to Be Depressing by the late author James R. Holmes, attempts to provide answers to the question of why we get depressed. Holmes uses a theory of loss of status as the major reason to depression rather than explaining depression using theories of chemical or hormonal imbalances. Therefore, a person's status and place in the world is key in understanding depression and why we become depressed. Depression, thereby, is primarily the result of changes in our place in the world. By status, Holmes does not necessarily mean s
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Guises of Desire
By Hilda Reilly
Review by Natalie Kelley-Wilson on Tue, Nov 25th 2014.
Guises of Desire by Hilda ReillyThis is a semi-fictional, historical account from the point of view of the woman who was referred to as "Anna O" in the first case study in Freud's and Breuer's Studies on Hysteria. It gives the lay person an intimate look at "hysterical illness" while also managing to entertain. The author gives a relatable voice to a person who may otherwise simply be a case study of mental illness and creates a character that one can sympathize with and even relate to, despite her rather intense mental issues. This book can be read and enjoyed by the general fiction reader, but an interest in psychology an
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DMT and the Soul of Prophecy
A New Science of Spiritual Revelation in the Hebrew Bible
By Rick Strassman
Review by A. P. Bober on Tue, Nov 18th 2014.
DMT and the Soul of Prophecy by Rick StrassmanHeard Doctor Strassman on talk shows of late?  His previous book must please the Jamesian tough-minded with its neuro-endocrinology more than this 'theurgified' escape from Occam's razor does.  The monk used the method if not the Latin phrase for 'KISS'--'Keep it simple, stupid'/'Keep it sweet and simple'--well before being congratulated for the phrase, as I style it, 'entia non multiplicanda' (sunt understood)--'We must not multiply categories or hypotheses' beyond the elegant (as a fuller version goes).  He so touts religio-theistic correlates of physiochemical experience as t
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The Story Hour
A Novel
By Thrity Umrigar
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 18th 2014.
The Story Hour by Thrity UmrigarThrity Umrigar's novel about the relationship between a psychotherapist and her client shows the therapist breaking many ethical rules of her profession, including employing the client as a house cleaner and caterer.  It is for the client's own benefit, and it helps.  It's no revelation that therapists break rules, but it is implausible that a therapist would make such crass errors and also tell her friends about them.  Maggie is a knowledgeable and talented clinician, and being African American from Brooklyn, she brings very important life experience to her work.  She is a
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Dante's Poison
A Mark Angelotti Novel
By Lynne Raimondo
Review by Natalie Kelley-Wilson on Tue, Nov 18th 2014.
Dante's Poison by Lynne RaimondoThis is a mystery novel with entertainment being its primary purpose. Psychological, pharmaceutical, judicial and law enforcement issues and practices are explored from the point of view of a tortured, but witty, and reasonably well adjusted protagonist. The author seems knowledgeable regarding all of the legal issues and settings which makes the story more interesting by giving what seems to be an insider perspective into the legal system, while making said insight accessible enough to be received as light entertainment. Fans of mystery will enjoy this novel. The protagonist appeals as an &l
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Diagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
By Rachel Cooper
Review by R.A. Goodrich, Ph.D. on Tue, Nov 11th 2014.
Diagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders by Rachel CooperIn the space of seven short chapters, British philosopher Rachel Cooper embarks upon a critical examination of the DSM-5 released in May 2013 with exemplary clarity. This is done without resorting to "any generalised 'anti-psychiatry' critique" of a previous generation (39). Unlike her analysis a decade earlier of the revised DSM-IV, Cooper is less overtly concerned with the conceptual status of mental or psychiatric disorders. Then, in "What is Wrong with the DSM?" in the March 2004 issue of History of Psychiatry, she cast doubt on whether the Manual's categories uneq
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American Psychosis
How the Federal Government Destroyed the Mental Illness Treatment System
By E. Fuller Torrey
Review by Elin Weiss on Tue, Nov 11th 2014.
American Psychosis by  E. Fuller TorreyIn American Psychosis: How The Federal Government Destroyed The Mental Illness Treatment System E. Fuller Torrey argues that the transfer of responsibility for individuals with serious mental illnesses from state to federal government destroyed the mental illness treatment system, through deinstitutionalization, and led to a disastrous change in how mentally ill individuals are treated today. Fuller Torrey argues that the change began in 1962 with plans for President Kennedy's Interagency Task Force on Mental Health and federally funded community mental health centers (CMHCs). Fulle
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Psychology
A Very Short Introduction
By Freda McManus and Gillian Butler
Review by Duncan Double on Tue, Nov 11th 2014.
Psychology by Freda McManus and Gillian ButlerThis is the second edition of the book on psychology in the Very Short Introduction collection, which now has surpassed 400 volumes. It was number 6 in the reissued series in 2000. Even though the book is about general psychology, both the authors are clinicians from the Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre. The book covers the main headings in psychology: perception, learning and memory, thinking, motivation and emotion, development, intelligence and personality, abnormal and social psychology. It is well written and provides a useful overview, perhaps especially for those considering studying ps
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Made For You
By Melissa Marr
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 11th 2014.
Made For You by Melissa MarrThis paranormal murder mystery by Melissa Marr is advertised as a young adult novel.  It is heavy on its themes of murder and sex for young teens, but it is no more explicit than a regular episode of Law and Order.   17-year-old Eva is walking along the sidewalk when she is run over by someone in a car.  Then other girls in their North Carolina town start getting killed.  Eva starts out the novel in hospital, with her face cut up by her accident, and several bones broken.  Her parents are away traveling and her boyfriend Robert won't come to see her.  At
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Fountain House
Creating Community in Mental Health Practice
By Alan Doyle, Julius Lanoil, and Kenneth Dudek
Review by Abraham Rudnick, M.D., Ph.D., C.P.R.P. on Tue, Nov 4th 2014.
Fountain House by Alan Doyle, Julius Lanoil, and Kenneth DudekFountain House is a book long due. The model of mental health services -- the clubhouse -- that is its focus has been practiced for more than half a century. It originated in New York in the late 1940s, as a self-help initiative of people with mental illness in reaction to de-institutionalization, i.e., the considerable reduction of number of psychiatric hospital beds, which resulted in the discharge to the community of many people with mental illness who then had insufficient support in the community. It was transformed to its current form in the early 1950s by John Beard, the executive direc
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Aspects of Psychologism
By Tim Crane
Review by Robert Zaborowski, Ph.D. on Tue, Nov 4th 2014.
Aspects of Psychologism by Tim CraneThis is a collection of papers by Tim Crane he published (with one exception) between 1992 and 2012 (more precisely only one was published before 1998). Most of them have been previously given in form of lectures on several occasions (for example materials that eventually resulted in The Given were presented on as many as eight occasions). The scope of the collection is the psychologism, though it is not taken in its traditional sense (i.e. as referring to logic and mathematic) but as a view "that the study of the mind should not be a purely conceptual investigation" (x). Expressed i
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The Story Within
Personal Essays on Genetics and Identity
By Amy Boesky (Editor)
Review by Dena Hurst, Ph.D. on Tue, Nov 4th 2014.
The Story Within by Amy Boesky (Editor)I have always been fascinated by stories, and in particular the very personal stories that you get from people while you are sitting on the bus or waiting in a doctor's office or attending a funeral, the kinds of places where there is just enough time to create a moment of trust and the promise of anonymity. We all have stories that we carry around with us, that we willingly share, sometimes need to share, when there is a welcoming ear. Such are the stories in The Story Within, slices of the deeply personal shared with anyone willing to listen. As someone who helps others draw out the st
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Wrinkles
DVD
By Ignacio Ferreras (Director)
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 4th 2014.
Wrinkles by Ignacio Ferreras (Director)This animated movie was originally released as "Arrugas" in 2011, and was based on a graphic novel by Paco Roca.  This new version has been given an English soundtrack, starring Martin Sheen and others.  The plot is simple and sad.  Emilio is a banker who has lost his wife and has problems with confusion and memory.  His son can't deal with him anymore, so Emilio moves into a residential home.  His roommate Miguel is full of life but he never married, and he takes pleasure in cheating the other residents of their money.  Emilio is happy to have someone to spend hi
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