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The Measure of Madness


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A first-rate exploration of how reference to multiple levels of explanation and description, from phenomenology to chemistry, may be assembled into a synoptic theory of delusion. Gerrans offers an erudite, novel, and insightful approach to the whole topic of delusional thought and attitude. This is an important book that deserves to be widely read. -- George Graham, Professor of Philosophy and Adjunct Faculty, Neuroscience Institute, Georgia State University; author of The Disordered Mind; and coeditor of The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Psychiatry An elegant meditation on delusion, dreaming, and default-mode thought. From dopamine dysregulation to delusional mood, from predictive coding to the phenomenology of agency, The Measure of Madness paints a compelling picture of thought gone wrong. This is philosophically informed cognitive neuropsychiatry at its best. -- Tim Bayne, Professor of Philosophy, University of Manchester Philip Gerrans's wonderful book not only presents an original and rigorously well-informed account of some of the most persistent and perplexing psychiatric delusions discussed by philosophers and cognitive scientists; it also shows how to develop a philosophical model of the mind that takes into account the functional, neural, and biochemical bases of mental capacities. Writing in an elegant but accessible style, and showing a mastery of the philosophical and the neuroscientific literature, Gerrans advocates an integrative approach to psychological mechanisms, as opposed to seeing the neural and the psychological levels as autonomous and independent of each other. Gerrans has persuaded me that this is the way to understand psychiatric delusions; and his approach to delusions also shows, more generally, the value of the integrative approach to studying the mind. I cannot recommend this book too highly. -- Tim Crane, Knightbridge Professor of Philosophy, University of Cambridge

About the Author

Philip Gerrans is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Adelaide.

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