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Lifetime Editions of Kraepelin in English

Lifetime Editions of Kraepelin in English (Hardback)

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The German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin (1856-1926) is justly called "the father of modern psychiatry". He was the first to identify schizophrenia and manic-depression, and he pioneered the use of drugs to treat mental illness. He was also joint discoverer of Alzheimer's disease (which he named after his collaborator, Dr Alois Alzheimer). Kraepelin presented these and other discoveries in successive editions of his "Psychiatrie: Ein Lehrbuch" (definitive 8th edition also available from Thoemmes Press). Much of this gigantic textbook can only be read in the original German; but parts of it were translated into English, and they had a very profound influence on the development of world psychiatry for the rest of the 20th century. This collection unites all the English translations of Kraepelin's work that appeared in his lifetime. The set opens with "Lectures on Clinical Psychiatry" in which Kraepelin presents some of the case histories on which the new theoretical system of the "Lehrbuch" is based.

The second volume, "Clinical Psychiatry", is the abstract made by one of Kraepelin's American students of the 7th edition of the "Lehrbuch"; it remains the only access English-speaking readers can have to Kraepelin's system in its full maturity. Volume three concerns "General Paresis" or syphilitic insanity; at the time, legions of researchers and laboratories were devoted to finding its cause and a cure - and it's still true that general paresis is the only psychiatric malady for which a cure has been found. Volume four is Kraepelin's epoch-making book, "Dementia Praecox and Paraphrenia". Although his labels have been replaced by the term "schizophrenia", Kraepelin's is still the classic description of this syndrome. The final volume is "Manic-Depressive Insanity and Paranoia", in which Kraepelin shows for the first time that psychotic depression can have alternating forms of mania and severe melancholy. Despite their enormous influence, these five books are difficult to find outside the biggest specialist collections. The appearance of this set of facsimiles gives libraries an opportunity to fill an important gap on their shelves.

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