Some orders may be delayed by the current Coronavirus lockdown.
Visit our help page for further information.
The Meaning of Mind: Language, Morality, and Neuroscience (Hardback)
  • The Meaning of Mind: Language, Morality, and Neuroscience (Hardback)
zoom

The Meaning of Mind: Language, Morality, and Neuroscience (Hardback)

(author)
£50.00
Hardback 200 Pages / Published: 30/09/1996
  • We can order this

Usually dispatched within 3 weeks

  • This item has been added to your basket

In this brilliantly original and highly accessible work, Thomas Szasz demonstrates the futility of analyzing the mind as a collection of brain functions. Instead of trying to unravel the riddle of a mythical entity called the mind, Szasz suggests that our task should be to understand and judge persons always as moral agents responsible for their own actions, not as victims of brain chemistry. This is Szasz's most ambitious work to date. In his best-selling book, The Myth of Mental Illness, he took psychiatry to task for misconstruing human conflict and coping as mental illness. In Our Right to Drugs, he exposed the irrationality and political opportunism that fuels the Drug War. In The Meaning of Mind, he warns that we misconstrue the dialogue within as a problem of consciousness and neuroscience, and do so at our own peril.

In The Meaning of Mind, Thomas Szasz argues that only as a verb does the word mind mean something in the real world, namely, attending or heeding. Minding is the ability to pay attention and adapt to one's environment by using language to communicate with others and oneself. Viewing the mind as a potentially infinite variety of self-conversations is the key that unlocks many of the mysteries we associate with this concept. Modern neuroscience is a misdirected effort to explain mind in terms of brain functions. The claims and conclusions of the diverse academics and scientists who engage in this enterprise undermine the concepts of moral agency and personal responsibility. Szasz shows that the cognitive function of speech is to enable us to talk not only to others but to ourselves (in short, to be our own interlocutor), and that the view that mind is brain-embraced by both the scientific community and the popular press-is not an empirical finding but a rhetorical ruse concealing humanity's unceasing struggle to control persons by controlling the vocabulary. The discourse of brain-mind, unlike the discourse of man as moral agent, protects people from the dilemmas intrinsic to holding themselves responsible for their own actions and holding others responsible for theirs. Because we live in an age blessed by the fruits of materialist science, reductionist explanations of the relationship between brain and mind are more popular today than ever, making this book an indispensible addition to the seemingly recondite debate about, simply, who we are.

Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 9780275956035
Number of pages: 200
Weight: 457 g
Dimensions: 234 x 156 x 12 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Within the broad church of anti-psychiatry, Thomas Szasz has been foremost in challenging a narrowly biological conception of human nature. Provocative, thoughtful, and highly readable, The Meaning of Mind extends his arguments to the bleak reductionism implicit in modern neuroscience. This is a timely stand against what C.S. Lewis called the 'abolition of man.' Thomas Szasz is a true Socratic gadfly of our modern Athens."-K.W.M. Fulford Professor of Philosophy and Mental Health Universities of Oxford and Warwick
.,."this crisply written and hard-hitting book not only scans but exposes the shortcomings of much scientific discourse about mind, brains and responsibility."-Network
?...this crisply written and hard-hitting book not only scans but exposes the shortcomings of much scientific discourse about mind, brains and responsibility.?-Network
?As in his earlier work, Szasz here excels in revealing the inherent inconsistencies and contradiction in the socio-medical practice of classifying some individuals as insane. His insistence that philosophers and psychiatrists ignore the whole person in discussions of moral responsibility and insanity at their peril should be heeded.?-Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review, #2, Vol38
?Szasz here addresses the concept of mind with his customary fervor. Clear, provocative, and based on broad reading and experience...the argument...concludes with the assertion of 'the conceptual primacy of the person as moral agent.' Szasz upholds this primacy against its reduction to the mind by psychiatry, to the soul by religion, or to the body by neuroscience....Recommended for academic libraries.?-Library Journal
?Szasz is an original thinker whose theories, though open to challenge, are daring and profound. His new book should appeal not only to those interested in mental illness but to anyone caught up in the ongoing debate about the origin and nature of mind.?- Publishers Weekly
..."this crisply written and hard-hitting book not only scans but exposes the shortcomings of much scientific discourse about mind, brains and responsibility."-Network
"As in his earlier work, Szasz here excels in revealing the inherent inconsistencies and contradiction in the socio-medical practice of classifying some individuals as insane. His insistence that philosophers and psychiatrists ignore the whole person in discussions of moral responsibility and insanity at their peril should be heeded."-Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review, #2, Vol38
"Szasz is an original thinker whose theories, though open to challenge, are daring and profound. His new book should appeal not only to those interested in mental illness but to anyone caught up in the ongoing debate about the origin and nature of mind."- Publishers Weekly
"Szasz here addresses the concept of mind with his customary fervor. Clear, provocative, and based on broad reading and experience...the argument...concludes with the assertion of 'the conceptual primacy of the person as moral agent.' Szasz upholds this primacy against its reduction to the mind by psychiatry, to the soul by religion, or to the body by neuroscience....Recommended for academic libraries."-Library Journal

You may also be interested in...

Anti-Oedipus
Added to basket
£21.99
Paperback
The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat
Added to basket
Crazy Like Us
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
The Undiscovered Self
Added to basket
£13.99
Paperback
Inside Lives
Added to basket
£30.99
Paperback
Shrinks
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
The Divided Self
Added to basket
£10.99
Paperback
The Myth of Mental Illness
Added to basket
Cracked
Added to basket
£9.99
Paperback
Dibs in Search of Self
Added to basket
The Polyvagal Theory
Added to basket
Madness and Civilization
Added to basket
Trauma and Recovery
Added to basket

Please sign in to write a review

Your review has been submitted successfully.