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July 1937

Objective and Experimental Psychiatry.

Arch NeurPsych. 1937;38(1):238. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1937.02260190248019

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Cameron stresses the importance of basing psychiatric studies on experimentation and quantitation. Uncontrolled observations with conventionalization and projection influencing the interpretation and with overemphasis on conscious activities often lead away from objective studies of basic causes. Psychiatry should be "dehumanized" and concepts of the patient built up from verifiable facts about his functions.

Cameron reviews various experimental and quantitative procedures which are being carried out. He summarizes the present status and contributions of intelligence testing and personality studies, of experimentation on animals—particularly that of Pavlov—and of studies in heredity. He presents briefly, but inclusively, physiologic tests in relation to mental disease. He discusses the simpler principles of statistics and emphasizes their importance.

The book is valuable as a concise, readable review, with a comprehensive bibliography. It leaves one, however, with the feeling that a human being can never be synthesized from studies of the functions of his parts. Such studies

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