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June 1969

Social Psychiatry.

Arch Intern Med. 1969;123(6):733-734. doi:10.1001/archinte.1969.00300160123030

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This volume, derived from the 1967 meeting of the American Psychopathological Association, holds considerable interest for internist concerned with the problems of social medicine in general and social psychiatry in particular. Several excellent papers underline the dangers inherent in practice which outruns its theoretical base, a continuing problem in the delivery of community mental health services.

Many papers deal with attempts to clarify the dimensions of community and social psychiatry. More general discussions, such as that of Dunham, "Theories and Hypotheses in Social Psychiatry: An Analysis of the Evidence," make exciting reading. Dunham reviews the theories utilized by social psychiatry and the hypotheses derived from these theories. He examines intensively the social isolation hypothesis in the etiology of schizophrenia and finds it unverified. Similar inspection of the hypothesis relating social class to mental illness is undertaken, and the lack of validation is stressed. Dunham concludes, The problem here is one

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