1: Introduction and History of Mental Illness
2: Classifying Psychopathology
3: Psychiatric Disorders
4: Stigma, Stereotyping, and the Mentally Ill
and History of Mental Illness
earliest explanation of what we now refer to as psychopathology involved the
possession by evil spirits and demons. Many believed, even as late as
the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries that the bizarre behavior associated
with mental illness could only be an act of the devil himself. To
remedy this, many individuals suffering from mental illness were tortured in
an attempt to drive out the demon. Most people know of the witch
trials where many women were brutally murdered due to a false belief of
possession. When the torturous methods failed to return the person to
sanity, they were typically deemed eternally possessed and were executed.
the eighteenth century we began to look at mental illness differently.
It was during this time period that "madness" began to be seen as
an illness beyond the control of the person rather than the act of a demon.
Because of this, thousands of people confined to dungeons of daily torture
were released to asylums where medical forms of treatment began to be
the medical model continues to be a driving force in the diagnosing and
treatment of psychopathology, although research has shown the powerful
effects that psychology has on a person's behavior, emotion, and cognitions.
This chapter will discuss the various ways mental illness is classified as
well as the effects of mental illness on the individual and society.