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Hysteria: The Rise of an Enigma

Editor(s): Bogousslavsky J. (Montreux) 
Cover

Traces of Hysteria in Novels

Haan J.a, b · Koehler P.J.c

Author affiliations

aDepartment of Neurology, Rijnland Hospital Leiderdorp, Leiderdorp, bDepartment of Neurology, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, and cDepartment of Neurology, Atrium Medical Centre Heerlen, Heerlen, The Netherlands

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Bogousslavsky J (ed): Hysteria: The Rise of an Enigma. Front Neurol Neurosci. Basel, Karger, 2014, vol 35, pp 99-108

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of  

Published online: June 26, 2014
Cover Date: 2014

Number of Print Pages: 10
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 0

ISBN: 978-3-318-02646-7 (Print)
eISBN: 978-3-318-02647-4 (Online)

Abstract

There have been many descriptions of presumed ‘hysterics' in fiction, many appearing in French literature, but also in a number of other languages. It is clear that contemporary medical ideas and insights about hysteria had a major influence on its depiction in novels. This is particularly true for naturalistic literature, which has been the subject of previous reviews. Here, we focus on a more recent novel: Human Traces by Sebastian Faulks (2005). What is special about the depiction of hysteria in this work is that the presumed ‘hysteric' turns out not to be hysteric at all. In the novel, as well as in this chapter, the diagnosis of hysteria is discussed in the light of theories about hysteria of around 1900. For comparison, we present some examples of true ‘hysterics' as they occur in fiction. Since it has become clear that severe nonpsychiatric diseases such as an ovarian teratoma can lead to bizarre phenotypes, the association of ‘hysteria' with the womb has to be seen in another light.

© 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of  

Published online: June 26, 2014
Cover Date: 2014

Number of Print Pages: 10
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 0

ISBN: 978-3-318-02646-7 (Print)
eISBN: 978-3-318-02647-4 (Online)


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Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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