Social science vs. neuroscience

Posted on October 14, 2011 in Health Debates

Source: — Authors: – news/letter – Re: A Rocky Road To ‘Recovery,’ Oct. 8.
Oct. 13, 2011.   Rob Wipond

Reporter Joseph Brean writes that the Mental Health Commission of Canada is struggling to achieve a balance between “empowerment, based in social science” and “psychiatry, based in neuroscience.” If only that were true, there would be a lot less conflict going on.

Neuroscience is a distinct field of objective study of the brain which, for example, would never deny that sending high voltage electricity through the brain or exposing the brain to prolonged use of addictive tranquillizers are dangerous, inherently destructive activities.

Psychiatry, conversely, is a highly controversial social science. And so the real conflict in mental health is between two schools of social science, between those who believe helping with psychological problems in others should be guided by fundamentally compassionate and democratic principles, and those who believe in paternalistic, authoritarian control and domination of others.

Rob Wipond, Victoria.

< >

Tags: ,

This entry was posted on Friday, October 14th, 2011 at 2:03 pm and is filed under Health Debates. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply