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Alien Landscapes?


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About the Author

Jonathan Glover is Professor of Ethics at the School of Law, King's College London.


Glover attempts a close encounter of the intellectual kind as he probes the ethical aspects of mental disorders and opens up new terrain in an age-old discussion. Responding to the long-standing discord between humanist and scientific perspectives on mental illness--an imbalance that consistently favors science--Glover aims to restore humanist views to the discussion through a sensitive examination of art, literature, and, perhaps most noteworthy, interviews with people who have mental disorders... For the philosophically inclined, Glover's exploration will prove to be an exciting and informative text.-- (07/07/2014)
A searching, humane look at the lives of the mentally ill, whose inner worlds can be alien landscapes indeed. Examining a population of hospitalized patients in Britain, ethicist Glover asks whether it is true that people who suffer from anti-social disorders are truly without conscience or whether it might not be that their moral world simply maps onto different territory from other people's--an important distinction in considering such things as the ability to recognize right from wrong and accept responsibility for one's actions.-- (09/15/2014)
This book should become a classic in the study of philosophy and psychiatry. The lucidity of the writing makes it, at once, profound and accessible. While acknowledging the substantial contribution of the biological sciences to our understanding of unusual mental states, Glover explores in depth how far an observer can make sense of--or 'interpret'--them. The implications for how we might think about 'values, ' 'identity, ' 'agency, ' the boundaries of 'illness, ' and treatment are most richly drawn.--George Szmukler, King's College London

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