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Shanman, J.A. (1990). Ethics and Psychiatry Toward Professional Definition by Allen R. Dyer Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, 1988, xii + 176 pp., $32.00. Psa. Books, 1(3):342-344.

(1990). Psychoanalytic Books, 1(3):342-344

Ethics and Psychiatry Toward Professional Definition by Allen R. Dyer Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, 1988, xii + 176 pp., $32.00

Review by:
James A. Shanman

It is almost trite to say that today, more than ever before, the subject of professional ethics is of singular importance both for the professions themselves and those they attempt to serve. While the problems faced by physicians, lawyers, architects, and clergymen seem to grow steadily in difficulty and complexity, the traditional bond with their respective patients, clients, and parishioners seems to be eroding at an equal pace. Apart from the apparent litigiousness of American society and an increasing intrusiveness at all levels of government, there is the problem of rising expectations—fueled, perhaps, by too great a faith in science and the present state of knowledge, together with the certain recollection that Marcus Welby could cure anything and Perry Mason could win any case—which the professions cannot reasonably fulfill. Clearly, the ethical codes that, as the author recognizes, define the professions and that to a significant extent sustain the bond between the professions and those they serve must be a significant focus for any serious professional.

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