British Universities Film & Video Council

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"Though This Be Madness, Yet There Be Method In’t": Shakespeare and Insane Asylums

Alternative title
Shakespeare and Insane Asylums
Synopsis
Podcast from the Folger Shakespeare Library. Rebecca Sheir interviews Benjamin Reiss, a professor in the English department at Emory University and the author of Theaters of Madness: Insane Asylums and Nineteenth-Century American Culture. "From the mid-1840s through about the mid-1860s in the United States, during the first generation of American psychiatry, no figure was cited as an authority on insanity and mental functioning more frequently than William Shakespeare," says Reiss. Such citations were not just in medical journals but in sworn legal testimony. Modern psychiatry was a fledgling field, regarded with distrust and little respect by many Americans. What it needed, above all, was authority—and what better, more respected authority than Shakespeare.
Series
Shakespeare Unlimited
Language
English
Country
United States
Medium
Audio
Recording date
2014
Duration
18 mins

Credits

Contributor
Benjamin Reiss; Rebecca Sheir; Richard Paul

Additional Details

Production type
Documentary/Educational/News
Subjects
Drama; Psychiatry
Keywords
mental illness; psychiatry; Shakespeare, William (1564-1616)

Notes

Notes
http://www.folger.edu/shakespeare-unlimited-episode-9 (accessed 2/2015)

Production Company

Name

R.L. Paul Productions

Record Stats

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