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Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2016 Jan;18(1):10. doi: 10.1007/s11920-015-0641-6.

The Disjointed Historical Trajectory of Anorexia Nervosa Before 1970.

Author information

1
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Department of Psychiatry, Institute of Medical Science, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, 1001 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON, M6J 1H4, Canada. John.Court@camh.ca.
2
Graduate and Academic Affairs, Faculty of Medicine, Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, M5T 1R8, Canada.
3
Eating Disorder Community Treatment Program, Toronto General Hospital, Toronto, ON, M5G 2C4, Canada.

Abstract

Responses in pre-modern eras to anorexia nervosa (as now understood) varied widely, from religious piety and sanctity through fear and superstition. While noting briefly the limited conceptualizations from pre-modern history this article is primarily focused from the late 19th century, commencing with helpful but tentative formulations of anorexia nervosa for early-modern medicine that were laid out, consistently between themselves, by Les├Ęgue, Gull and Osler. Yet that promising biomedical advent was superseded for more than a half-century by deep, internal divisions and bitter rifts that festered between three medical disciplines: neurology; Freudian psychotherapy; and Kraepelinian biological psychiatry. Mid-20th century developments preceded the 1960-1980s' improved understanding of suffering and movement toward effective remediation introduced by Dr. Hilde Bruch.

KEYWORDS:

Anorexia nervosa; Eating disorders; History of psychiatry; Neurology; Psychiatry; Psychotherapy

PMID:
26769199
PMCID:
PMC4713454
DOI:
10.1007/s11920-015-0641-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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