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June 1968

Origins of Modern Psychiatry.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1968;18(6):762-763. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1968.01740060122016

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To cultivate a garden, one must not only tend to the flowers but also cut down the weeds. This sage injunction is sole warrant for the reviewer's labors and the ARCHIVES' space accorded to a work that merits neither.

In Origins of Modern Psychiatry the former editor of the long-defunct journal The Nervous Child has strung together a miscellany of 28 previously published articles—and called it a book.

In this book each article is counted a chapter and the "chapters" are strung together with little rhyme or reason. Some chapters are "itsy-bitsy crumbs" of medical history. Thus Chapter 5, dealing with Stahl, is three pages long. Chapter 6, devoted to Monro II, is even shorter—11/2 pages. Chapter 9, on the origin and early history of electroshock therapy (EST), is 21/22 pages long. In this brief gem the author manages to confuse electrotherapy with EST, to indict Ugo

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