Featured course: USNA 285 The Science of Madness

Image credit: Hans von Gersdorff, Feldbuch der Wundarzney (Field book of surgery) in 1517.

As the western world’s understanding of psychological disorders has evolved since Antiquity, society has had some pretty wild ideas about the causes of mental illness and how to treat it. This remote-synchronous course will examine the trajectory of that evolution. By looking at how changing perceptions of mental illness and science influenced theories about causes and treatments, from trepanning (drilling holes in the skull to release spirits from the body) to psychotropic drugs and talk therapies, we will also consider how science, culture, and politics have contributed to societal stigmatization of mental illness.


For further information contact Dr. Barbara Burgess-Van Aken (bab26@case.edu).



Summer 2021 featured courses are shared at the request of the instructor.
For more information on this course and all Summer 2021 offerings, visit the course list.