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Hendrick, I. (1936). Research in Dementia Præcox. (Past Attainments, Present Trends, and Future Possibilities.): By Nolan D. C. Lewis. Acknowledgment by Dr. Arthur Ruggles. Copyright by the Supreme Council of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite, released by the National Committee for Mental Hygiene. 1936. 280 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 5:604-606.

(1936). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 5:604-606

Research in Dementia Præcox. (Past Attainments, Present Trends, and Future Possibilities.): By Nolan D. C. Lewis. Acknowledgment by Dr. Arthur Ruggles. Copyright by the Supreme Council of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite, released by the National Committee for Mental Hygiene. 1936. 280 pp.

Review by:
Ives Hendrick

This exhaustive review of research in dementia præcox during the last fifteen years is a part of the coördinated study of this psychosis sponsored by the Northern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite. The author has tried to adjust his presentation to both lay and scientific readers. He has achieved a readable style, punctuated by an abundance of sage quotations from students of the philosophy of science. But most of the subject matter is highly technical.

The bibliography comprises 1,778 scientific titles, published between 1920 and 1934 in ten European languages (with "miscellaneous" and "Oriental" references as well.) These are classified according to topics, subtopics, and the publication years. The text is primarily a discussion of this bibliography, under the following headings: Research Trends in Mental Disorder, Clinical Features, Etiological Aspects, Alterations in Structure and Structure Function, Differential Diagnosis, Therapeutic Modifications and Experimental Therapy. There is a brief chapter of conclusions, and a supplementary bibliography of books on dementia præcox (1920–1934) and a four and one-half page bibliography of publications prior to 1920. The author fortunately digresses here and there from his discussion of the bibliography to present cases and opinions of his own, and the latter chapters include a treatise on differential diagnosis. A table comparing in parallel columns the diagnostic criteria of psychoneurosis and psychosis is especially worthwhile (pp. 270–1). A composite of the separate bibliographies, alphabetically arranged, and an index to the discussion would add to its unusual value.

Dr. Lewis' discussion of the literature of research in dementia præcox represents a modern and progressive viewpoint, and a full appreciation of the primary importance of psychologically oriented clinical observation.

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