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Michaels, J.J. (1943). Foundations of Neuropsychiatry: By Stanley Cobb. Second Revised and Enlarged Edition. Baltimore: The Williams & Wilkins Company, 1941. 231 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 12:577-578.

(1943). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 12:577-578

Foundations of Neuropsychiatry: By Stanley Cobb. Second Revised and Enlarged Edition. Baltimore: The Williams & Wilkins Company, 1941. 231 pp.

Review by:
J. J. Michaels

This book is a revised edition of the author's Preface to Nervous Disease, published in 1936, written then to give to practitioners and students of medicine the facts and correlations needed to understand the simpler workings of the central nervous system. In an introduction, the author presents his conception of a hierarchy of sciences with the implication that psychiatry as yet cannot be treated with the same precision that the so-called sciences can. He believes that the brain is the organ of mind, that psychology is the study of the mind, and psychiatry the study of the abnormal mind. The distinction between a normal mental state and an abnormal one cannot be clearly and sharply defined. There is no psychopathology without a system of psychology.

From the standpoint of neurology, one finds much of value in terms of basic facts upon which the structure of neurology is built. Ten of the twelve chapters deal with neurology. Throughout the book, the emphasis is physiological and neurological. In the treatment of the more concrete and tangible aspects of the nervous system, a high level of excellence is maintained. Wherever possible Cobb utilizes dynamic conceptions and applies the integration-disintegration thesis. He brings a refreshing clearness and conciseness to factual material, and one must admire his outspoken and frank attitude. The chapter on cerebral circulation might be singled out as of special importance. Cobb has been one of the pioneers in its study.

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