In the next few weeks I’m doing a couple of teaching sessions with psychiatric residents on the History of Psychiatry.
Several years ago Francine Chisholm and I put together a PowerPoint module to try to grab trainees attention for what can be a tough-sell subject. It’s meant to be a self-driving experience where the user gets to click where they want to go (this was pre-Prezi). I haven’t yet figured how to make the whole thing available online but will keep looking into this. In the meantime here are three video clips that give a taste. The third one, a poem by a woman in an asylum, I still find moving.
Ode to a Key
My goal isn’t to judge the past (though I do). The goal is to make residents (and me) aware of our limitations and to leave us humble about how much we still don’t know. Readers of this blog know I believe clozapine is a valuable medication. At the same time I sincerely hope it’s obsolete in fifty years; I suspect people will look back and think “what was he thinking using a medication like that?”.
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana
As far as learning psychiatric history, that’s a good enough reason for me.