Lecture 8: Mental Illness (1:53min of Fall 2013 Heart/Mental Illness lecture)
Mental Illness will affect 1 in 4 ie 25% people at some point in their life (ie not rare).
Very stigmatized: schizophrenia most severe (NOT split personality)- dissociation from reality,
hallucination (auditory and visual)
Mania (very happy)
What causes mental illness? Used to be thought that they were possessed by demons; Middle
ages-foul stones in their heads; Ancient Romans thought came from full moon (word lunatic)
A. ancient skull that have holes drilled into them because people believed mental illness
was caused by spirits in the brain- some people have survived this because could tell
the the skull healed after surgery (bowl structure around hole); some people still believe
1. Amanda Feilding (1970) started this by drilling hole into her own skull, didn’t drill into
her own brain. Her theory was that releasing excess pressure from brain will heal
from mental illness (believed that we didn’t evolve properly to deal with extra
pressure) “higher level of consciousness”; She ran for Parliament twice with a
platform that trepanation should be covered under the national health plan.; video of
herself drilling hole
2. Peter Halvorson: “Hole in the head” advocate: drilled small holes in his head and
said her was able to think better.
B. Middle ages, believed that if mentally ill, you were possessed by witches or demons,
and had to release them by heat. They would literally try to burn the spirit out of the
body. If that didn’t work, spirits had to be destroyed even if that meant destroying the
body too. Many people accused of being witches were actually mentally ill (probably
schitzophrenic). Not killed as punishment, but because believed to be possessed.
C. Later (1700 and 1800s); Instead tie people to stake. Mental hospital horrible conditions.
Water pressure treatment, etc.
D. Sigmund Freud-Austrian psychologist that was first to start thinking of mental illness
scientifically. He believed mental illness was a “struggle between conscious and subconscious mind”. He suggested something was causing problem in body. Blamed
parents a lot.
E. Luigi Galvani (1780 Italy)- Static electricity (called physicists today, not termed this way
then, rich philosophers then). Interested in frogs and where beginning of c