Books, Journals, New Media Section Editor: Harriet
S. Meyer, MD, Contributing Editor, JAMA; David H. Morse, MS, University
of Southern California, Norris Medical Library, Journal Review Editor.
The stated object of this book is to describe an "approach to psychiatry."
The author, Bruce J. Cohen, MD, describes feedback from those he teaches as
indicating that psychiatry suffers from a "lack of conceptual scaffolding,"
a deficit of centering, so to speak. His technique is to use a "conversational
tone," as a professor might in speaking to students. His is a large task.
The book begins with general chapters, such as "Mental Life and Its
Assessment" and "Psychiatric Formulation From Multiple Perspectives," then
presents chapters on specific disorders, such as mood disorders, schizophrenia,
and anxiety disorders, replete with well-placed graphs and lists. The author
addresses nomenclature and grammar, eg, "From the perspective of function,
patients are viewed as subjects or agents, endowed with free will, with the
capacity to get angry, to plan, to make decisions, to fall in love" and "Note
how, when we are using the approach from form, we typically use passive verbs
to describe the patient's experiences (for example, the patient ‘experiences
hallucinations and delusions')."
Hodo DW. Psychiatry. JAMA. 2003;290(16):2195-2196. doi:10.1001/jama.290.16.2195