1. The Three Christs of Ypsilanti in the London Review of Books

    Jenny Diski has written a review of The Three Christs of Ypsilanti for the London Review of Books. Not only is the book a fascinating look at a unique way to expose patients’s delusions—by putting three men who believe they were Christ in a room together Milton Rokeach hoped they would return to ‘normalcy’ because of the apparent contradiction in their beliefs—but also a document showing psychiatry’s difficulties when doctors’s beliefs are set up as correct and opposite from their patients. Here Diski’s conclusion to her article (shouldn’t be behind a pay-wall):

    “[In 1976] Rokeach reread the book with regret. There were, he says, four people with delusional beliefs, not three. He failed to take himself into account, and the three Christs, not cured themselves, had cured him of his ‘God-like delusion that I could change them by omnipotently and omnisciently arranging and rearranging their daily lives’. He came to realise that he had no right to play God and interfere, and was increasingly uncomfortable about the ethics of his experiment. ‘I was cured when I was able to leave them in peace, and it was mainly Leon who somehow persuaded me that I should leave them in peace.’”

Notes

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    I am stoked to see this book in print again.
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