Introduction: Dilemma of Mental Illness (01:29)
Ronald D. Laing is known for attacks on the established system for diagnosing mentally ill patients. Richard Evans interviews Laing about his psychological and philosophical ideas.
Field of Mental Diagnosis (03:28)
Laing shares beliefs about classifications, particularly diagnostic categories, within the field of psychology and mental illness. When psychologists diagnose someone with a mental illness, he or she enters a zone of speculation.
Organic Psychosis (05:11)
Laing discusses whether neurological disorders, such as alcoholism, can be diagnosed with certainty before death. These disorders have been misdiagnosed and mistreated throughout centuries; Laing uses syphilis during WWII as an example.
Complications of a Diagnosis (03:42)
Laing believes psychologists and psychiatrists should look at the source of the problem in addition to the symptoms. Evans confirms that Laing believes "organic" mental disorders are not as simple as a diagnosis makes it sound.
Functional Disorders (08:22)
Scientists deliberately drive animals insane during laboratory experiments to show how easy it is for an environment to deteriorate mental health. Until geneticists and chemist place a disorder in the context of the chemical environment, their scientific theories cannot be fully proven.
Psychiatrists and Their Patients (03:08)
Laing believes that oftentimes, doctors and scientists giving a medical diagnosis are more disordered than the patients.
Genetics and Mental Illness (02:46)
Evans cites Laing's opinion of psychologist Gregory Bateson who created the term "double bind." Laing once used the term "double bind family" when discussing the genetic implications of schizophrenic mental disorders.
Credits: Dilemma of Mental Illness (00:44)
Credits: Dilemma of Mental Illness
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