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historical perspective on psychopathology


									The History of

  A historical perspective on
      abnormal behavior
What is Psychopathology?

   The   study of abnormal thoughts,
      behaviors, and feelings.

     “Psycho” means “mind.”

     “Pathology” means “pathogen” or “organism
      causing disease.”
Factors that determine whether
behavior is abnormal or not:
   1.Statistical infrequency

   2.Violation of norms

   3.Personal Distress

   4.Dysfunction

   Unexpectedness
Statistical infrequency:
    Abnormal behavior is often infrequent.

 mania & depression occur in 1% of the pop.
 Not all unusual behavior is abnormal!!
   (E.g., superior athletic ability, geniuses)
Violation of norms:

   Abnormal behavior often violates the social
    norms of a given culture.

(E.g., experiencing hallucinations, talking to
  inanimate objects,)

    The violation of norms explicitly makes
     abnormality a relative concept.

     Criminals and prostitutes violate social
     norms, but would not fall within the context
     of abnormal psychology.
Personal Distress:

     Behavior may be abnormal if it creates great

     (E.g., people with depression experience
      considerable distress.)
    Not all distressed individuals are mentally
     ill & some mentally ill individuals do not
     show distress (psychopaths).

   Does the behavior impair an individual’s
    ability to function in life (work, personal
     (E.g., substance-use disorders)
    Some individuals with a DSM diagnosis,
     live functional lives (e.g., transvestites).

    Distress & disability are considered
     abnormal when they are unexpected
     responses to stressors.

     E.g., (anxiety disproportionate with the
Problems with classifying behavior
as abnormal
  Several factors need to be examined.

  Societal norms may change which behaviors
    are deemed abnormal.

   E.g., Homosexuality was once classified as a
    mental disorder in the DSM (up till 1973).
1. Clinical Psychologist

   -Ph.D. or Psy.D.

   -4-7 yrs graduate study

   -1-year internship in APA accredited hospital
    or mental health facility.
History of Psychopathology

     Mental illness was thought to be the result of
      supernatural forces (angry Gods, possession by

      Scholars, theologians, and philosophers believed a
      troubled mind was the result of displeased Gods or
Demonology: “the Devil made
me do it!”
   Abnormal behavior (hallucinations, delusions,
    paranoia) resulted from demonic possession.

 Treatment: drive the evil spirits out of the body.
 -stone-age: trephination

   -exorcism: prayers, brews, flogging, starvation,
Mental illness: a biological problem.

     By 5th century B.C., mental illness--thought to be
      result of biological problem in the brain.

     -Hippocrates- argued that deviant behavior was
      result of physical causes.

     -The view that deviant behavior occurs because of
      disease in the body is called “Somatogenesis.”
Hippocrates (contd.)

  Thought cognitive functioning could be
   restored by balancing the four humors in
   body: blood, black bile, yellow bile, &
The Dark Ages

     With decline of Roman & Greek
      civilizations/ rise of Church as dominant
      power in Europe, demonology makes a

     *Treatment- exorcisms
Mental illness: witchcraft (1300s)

   Hallucinations & delusions--evidence of witchcraft.

   Most accused were not mentally ill, but forced to
    confess crimes they didn’t commit.

   Treatment: beatings/death by hanging or burning.
Mentally ill housed in asylums (1500s+)

   After crusades, mentally ill were confined to asylums.

   Asylums (originally leprosariums), were converted
    after crusades when leprosy was on a decline.

   Most famous: St. Mary’s of Bethlehem in London
    (founded in 1243). Called “Bedlam.”

   Deplorable conditions- little food, little patient care,
    blood letting practices, & spread of diseases.
Asylums became “attraction.”

     Bethlehem- became hot tourist spot, where
      people gawked at London’s mentally ill.

     Treatment- patients were drained of blood
      & purposely “frightened.”
Moral Treatment (1790s +)

     Philippe Pinel – humanitarian treatment of
      mentally ill in asylums.

     Patients formerly chained & shackled were
      released & free to roam the buildings.

  Treatment: cannabis, opium, alcohol.
Medical model (recent)

  Mental illness– may have biological,
   psychological, and/or social cause.

 Treatment: drugs, psychotherapy, ECT
Psychopathology & crime

     Currently, it is well known that some forms
      of psychopathology predispose individuals
      to perform criminal acts.

   Some of the mental disorders linked with
    criminal behavior are: conduct disorder,
   antisocial personality disorder, and

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