Research and Reviews in Psychology

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History, racism and the haunting of American psychiatry

The session description for this Webinar on Neuroscience and Psychiatry explains neuropsychiatry as “engaged with understanding the link between mind, body and behavior.” My presentation reminds us that these connections of mind-body-behavior when understood out of the context of a broader engagement with history itself have occasioned the field’s worst abuses, including the current ones. As the greatest example, today in the United States ninety percent of state psychiatric beds are in jails and prisons, institutions that confine disproportionate numbers of African Americans—what author Michelle Alexander termed The New Jim Crow

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