Edited by Jeffrey A. Schaler
OPEN COURT PUBLISHERS
Distributed by Publishers Group West
Since he published The Myth of Mental Illness in 1961, Thomas Szasz has been a provocative and polarizing figure, bitterly denounced by some, lovingly defended by others, simultaneously baffling, exasperating, and entertaining to many.
In Szasz Under Fire, thirteen outstanding writers criticize Szasz's ideas on specific issues such as the reality of mental illness, physician-assisted suicide, addiction, and the insanity defense. Szasz replies to each criticism in detail, with his famous clarity, forcefulness, and occasional acerbity. Szasz Under Fire includes the first published autobiographical essay by Szasz and a complete bibliography of his writings.
The foremost opponent of psychiatric dogma, psychiatric practice, and the hubris of politicized medicine, Szasz has argued passionately and knowledgeably against compulsory commitment of the mentally ill, against the war on drugs, against the insanity defense in criminal trials, against the "diseasing" of addiction and homosexuality, and for the right to suicide.
His books include Sex by Prescription (1980), The Untamed Tongue (1990), Our Right to Drugs (1992), Cruel Compassion (1994), Fatal Freedom (1999), Pharmacracy (2001), and Liberation by Oppression (2002).
[Click here for high-resolution digital photograph of Szasz.]
"Anyone who has ever had qualms about the state giving psychiatrists the power to use drugs and civil commitment to control its citizens on the basis of 'mental illness' will be deeply rewarded by this stellar intellectual performance by Szasz, who not only holds his liberty-centered ground, but often gains more in direct and sometimes brutally frank responses to his critics and would-be reshapers of his life's work."
-GEORGE J. ANNAS
Professor and Chair, Department of Health, Bioethics, and Human Rights, Boston University School of Public Health, and author of The Rights of Patients
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