Bruce Levine Blog
Psychiatry’s Failure Crisis: Are You Moderately or Radically Enlightened?
Psychiatry has historically promoted dogma—not science—and dogma tends to be boring for freethinkers who can smell its odor even before they can deconstruct it. The challenge then is this: How can psychiatry be examined in a novel way that might intrigue freethinkers and critical thinkers of science, philosophy, politics, and history who would not ordinarily […]
Marx, Spinoza, and the Political Implications of Contemporary Psychiatry
Simple logic tells us that those atop a societal hierarchy will provide rewards for professionals—be they clergy or psychiatrists—who promote an ideology that maintains the status quo, and that the ruling class will do everything possible to manipulate the public to believe that the social-economic-political status quo is natural. If a population believes that its […]
Psychiatry’s Medical Model: How It Traumatizes, Retraumatizes & Perverts Healing
Before describing how psychiatry’s medical model traumatizes and retraumatizes—both overtly and insidiously—and before distinguishing genuine healing from psychiatry’s perversion of this term, I will begin by tackling the following question: What Exactly is Psychiatry’s “Medical Model?” Psychiatry’s medical model is essentially a disease model. While there are controversies about its definition—which I will return to—in […]
Do You Still Believe in the “Chemical Imbalance Theory of Mental Illness”?
It continues to come as a great surprise for many people to learn that psychiatry’s leading authorities, including the former longtime director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), have discarded the “chemical imbalance theory of mental illness”—an idea which has had a profound impact on millions of emotionally suffering people and on our […]
Why, With More Treatment, Suicides and Mental Distress Have Increased? Former NIMH Director’s New Book
Insel begins by comforting his fellow psychiatrists with his claim that current psychiatric treatments “are as effective as some of the most widely used medications in medicine,” but he then asks this unsettling question: “If treatments are so effective, why are outcomes so dire?”
Anti-Psychiatry, Szasz, Torrey, Biederman & the Death of Freethinking
In contemporary U.S. society, financial conflicts of interest, flip-flopping, belittling, and arrogance are no drawbacks to becoming a powerful authority—this is true today not only for national leaders but for influential psychiatry authorities (discussed later). Illegitimate authorities are often embraced when fear subverts critical thinking. Americans appear to be increasingly terrified by the possibility of […]
The Shaming and Punishment of Whoopi Goldberg: What Does It Say About US Society?
A couple of days after the public shaming and suspension punishment of Whoopi Goldberg for saying that “the Holocaust isn’t about race,” I combed the Internet to see if any Jewish leader would cut her some slack. Finally, I found one, Rabbi Sharon Brous of the Ikar community in Los Angeles. She tweeted, “If what […]
Suicide, Indian Farmers, Indigenous North Americans . . . and the Shame of Shrinks
Roland Chrisjohn, lead author of Dying to Please You: Indigenous Suicide in Contemporary Canada, more effectively than anyone I know, confronts this tragic denial by mental health professionals: through their medicalizing and diseasing of sociopolitically-fueled suicidality, they are enabling suffering and increasing suicide. Chrisjohn is Onyota’a:ka of the Haudenausaunee, has a doctorate in psychology, and […]
Harvard Tells Us Young Americans are Increasingly Hopeful . . . Really?
Given my experience with young people’s hopelessness, I was skeptical of a Harvard Kennedy School spring 2021 poll of 18-to-29 year olds that declared “hope for America among young people is rising dramatically.” Harvard’s #1 top finding is: “In the fall of 2017, only 31% of young Americans said they were hopeful about the future […]
“Cured” Filmmakers React to my Review of Their Upcoming PBS Doc
A new documentary about gay activists’ defeat of the APA ends with a disclaimer that ECT is “effective for severe depression.” Bruce Levine spoke with the filmmakers.