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February 1967

The Theory and Practice of Psychiatry.

Arch Neurol. 1967;16(2):225. doi:10.1001/archneur.1967.00470200113011

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Textbooks are too often an entombment of outdated knowledge. The Theory and Practice of Psychiatry is a welcome exception and a rare accomplishment. It presents clinical insight, experimental data, and theoretical formulation in an appropriately critical and questioning setting.

Redlich and Freedman set themselves an enormous task. In their preface they state their belief that psychiatry rests on the foundations of both basic biological and behavorial sciences. The first includes genetics and the neurophysiological and neurochemical correlates of behavior; the second includes psychology, sociology, anthropology, and "the biologically oriented science of psychoanalysis." Out of this morass of possible information, the authors select what they feel are the "core problems, issues, facts, and approaches" that identify the body of general psychiatric knowledge. This material is organized along the classic lines of a psychiatric text. In the first 11 chapters the authors discuss the field of psychiatry, its history, normal and abnormal

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