The Architecture of Madness

Author: Carla Yanni
Publisher: U of Minnesota Press
ISBN: 9780816649396
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Theaters of Madness

Author: Benjamin Reiss
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226709655
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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In the mid-1800s, a utopian movement to rehabilitate the insane resulted in a wave of publicly funded asylums—many of which became unexpected centers of cultural activity. Housed in magnificent structures with lush grounds, patients participated in theatrical programs, debating societies, literary journals, schools, and religious services. Theaters of Madness explores both the culture these rich offerings fomented and the asylum’s place in the fabric of nineteenth-century life, reanimating a time when the treatment of the insane was a central topic in debates over democracy, freedom, and modernity. Benjamin Reiss explores the creative lives of patients and the cultural demands of their doctors. Their frequently clashing views turned practically all of American culture—from blackface minstrel shows to the works of William Shakespeare—into a battlefield in the war on insanity. Reiss also shows how asylums touched the lives and shaped the writing of key figures, such as Emerson and Poe, who viewed the system alternately as the fulfillment of a democratic ideal and as a kind of medical enslavement. Without neglecting this troubling contradiction, Theaters of Madness prompts us to reflect on what our society can learn from a generation that urgently and creatively tried to solve the problem of mental illness.

Angels in the Architecture

Author: Heidi Johnson
Publisher: Wayne State University Press
ISBN: 0814332129
Format: PDF, ePub
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An intimate photographic journey into 115 years of history inside a nineteenth-century asylum.

Madness in America

Author: Lynn Gamwell
Publisher: Cornell Univ Pr
ISBN: 9780801431616
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Drawing on a rich array of sources, Lynn Gamwell and Nancy Tomes explore the historical roots of American's understanding of madness in this lavishly illustrated book.

Asylum

Author: Christopher Payne
Publisher: Mit Press
ISBN: 9780262013499
Format: PDF
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Powerful photographs of the grand exteriors and crumbling interiors of America's abandoned state mental hospitals.

Death Rode the Rails

Author: Mark Aldrich
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 9780801882364
Format: PDF
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A fascinating account of one of America's most important industries and its dangers.

Vanished in Hiawatha

Author: Carla Joinson
Publisher: U of Nebraska Press
ISBN: 0803288247
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Begun as a pork-barrel project by the federal government in the early 1900s, the Canton Asylum for Insane Indians quickly became a dumping ground for inconvenient Indians. The federal institution in Canton, South Dakota, deprived many Native patients of their freedom without genuine cause, often requiring only the signature of a reservation agent. Only nine Native patients in the asylum's history were committed by court order. Without interpreters, mental evaluations, or therapeutic programs, few patients recovered. But who cared about Indians and what went on in South Dakota? After three decades of complacency, both the superintendent and the city of Canton were surprised to discover that someone did care and that a bitter fight to shut the asylum down was about to begin. In this disturbing tale, Carla Joinson unravels the question of why this institution persisted for so many years. She also investigates the people who allowed Canton Asylum's mismanagement to reach such staggering proportions and asks why its administrators and staff were so indifferent to the misery experienced by patients. Vanished in Hiawatha is the harrowing tale of the mistreatment of Native American patients at a notorious insane asylum whose history helps us to understand the broader mistreatment of Native peoples under forced federal assimilation in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Freedom and the Cage

Author: Leslie Topp
Publisher: Penn State Press
ISBN: 0271079207
Format: PDF
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Spurred by ideals of individual liberty that took hold in the Western world in the late nineteenth century, psychiatrists and public officials sought to reinvent asylums as large-scale, totally designed institutions that offered a level of freedom and normality impossible in the outside world. This volume explores the “caged freedom” that this new psychiatric ethos represented by analyzing seven such buildings established in the Austro-Hungarian monarchy between the late 1890s and World War I. In the last two decades of the Habsburg Empire, architects of asylums began to abandon traditional corridor-based plans in favor of looser formations of connected villas, echoing through design the urban- and freedom-oriented impulse of the progressive architecture of the time. Leslie Topp considers the paradoxical position of designs that promoted an illusion of freedom even as they exercised careful social and spatial control over patients. In addition to discussing the physical and social aspects of these institutions, Topp shows how the commissioned buildings were symptomatic of larger cultural changes and of the modern asylum’s straining against its ideological anchorage in a premodern past of “unenlightened” restraint on human liberty. Working at the intersection of the history of architecture and the history of psychiatry, Freedom and the Cage broadens our understanding of the complexity and fluidity of modern architecture’s engagement with the state, with social and medical projects, and with mental health, psychiatry, and psychology.

Nature s Museums

Author: Carla Yanni
Publisher: Princeton Architectural Press
ISBN: 9781568984728
Format: PDF, ePub
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Yanni (art history, Rutgers U.) examines the relationship between architecture and science in the 19th century by considering the physical placement and display of natural artifacts in Victorian natural history museums. She begins by discussing the problem of classification, the social history of collecting, as well as architectural competitions an