Were we asleep at the wheel?

At the beginning of June 2008 I sent an e-mail to Dr Leon Eisenberg, a former child psychiatrist, and a man of philosophy and science:

leon-eisenberg

Dr Eisenberg was then 89 years old and I wanted to convey how important his writings had been for me as a doctor of medicine.

I did not expect a reply:
leon-eisenberg-to-peter-gordon-8-june-2016

A year later Leon Eisenberg died.

After his death a memoir was discovered: which Eisenberg had named “Were We Asleep at the Switch?”.

were-we-asleep-at-the-switch

Eisenberg suggested that a switch from ‘mind’ to ‘body’ has taken place in psychiatry as a discipline, which has led to overuse of medication.

He also argued that “monied interests” had been making de facto decisions on behalf of us all about how the “science” of things that might affect us.

Eisenberg was worried that the overwhelming impact of economic considerations may have rendered, and might continue to render futile, the professional contributions of many brilliant, timely, and concerned working scientists.

leon-eisenberg-1987b

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