Journals Higher Education



Published: 28 March 1991

400 Pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

ISBN: 9780195057812

Also Available In:

Bookseller Code (06)

"Shattered Nerves"

Doctors, Patients, and Depression in Victorian England

Janet Oppenheim

In this brilliant cultural and intellectual history, Oppenheim shows how British doctors and patients made sense of the problem of depression. Physicians searched for physical causes for mental illness, believing the nervous system maintained a charge of "nerve force," much like a battery; only after World War I did Freud's revolution in psychology penetrate British medicine. She also reveals the social prejudices--about sexuality, gender roles, etc.--that shaped the theories (even as she offers many surprises about Victorian psychology). This in-depth account offers important new insight into nineteenth-century British culture, society, and medical thought.