For more than half a century, Thomas Szasz has devoted much of his career to a radical critique of psychiatry. His latest work, Psychiatry: The Science of Lies, is a culmination of his life’s work: to portray the integral role of deception in the history and practice of psychiatry. Szasz argues that the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness stands in the same relationship to the diagnosis and treatment of bodily illness that the forgery of a painting does to the original masterpiece.
"Over four hours of rant, with lack of rationale"
Until recent years, “bad” and “immoral” were the terms used to describe people who are now referred to as “sick” and “in need of treatment.” Moral and religious perspective has been replaced by medical and therapeutic rhetoric. It is little wonder why the world is plagued by legions of rapists, drug users, murderers, thieves, and child abusers, all of whom are now referred to as having one form or another of “addiction” and are thus either “sick” or suffering from “mental illness.”
"SZASZ SULLIES PSYCHOTHERAPY UNJUSTLY"
Defining "medicalization" as the perception of nonmedical conditions as medical problems and nondiseases as diseases, Thomas Szasz has devoted much of his career to exposing the dangers of "medicalizing" the conditions of some who simply refuse to conform to society's expectations. Szasz argues that modern psychiatry's tireless ambition to explain the human condition has led to the treatment of life's difficulties and oddities as clinical illnesses rather than as humanity revealed in its fullness.