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Schizophrenia, Self, and Person: Eugen Bleuler and Arthur Kronfeld on a Conceptual Alliance


Maatz, Anke; Hoff, Paul (2017). Schizophrenia, Self, and Person: Eugen Bleuler and Arthur Kronfeld on a Conceptual Alliance. Psychopathology, 50(5):297-303.

Abstract

The conceptual history of schizophrenia is marked by considerable dissent about its nosological status, and the question of whether it represents a distinct disease entity remains hotly debated. Another recurring feature in the conceptual history of schizophrenia is the reference to concepts of self and person. This paper brings in connection these two debates by interrogating the nosological function of “self” and “person” by means of a fictitious dialogue between Eugen Bleuler, the inventor of schizophrenia, and his contemporary Arthur Kronfeld. Introducing their respective accounts of schizophrenia with a special focus on how concepts of self and person figure therein, our analysis suggests that these concepts are primarily employed in an attempt to guarantee the nosological unity of schizophrenia: mediated by the concept of a core disturbance, alterations of the self or the person thus become the essential core of schizophrenia. Yet, rather than providing an easy solution to the nosological problem of the unity of schizophrenia, the concepts of self and person and their assumed disturbances are themselves fraught with debates about unity. We discuss these conceptual challenges in light of present-day nosological debates and the currently abounding research on the self.

Abstract

The conceptual history of schizophrenia is marked by considerable dissent about its nosological status, and the question of whether it represents a distinct disease entity remains hotly debated. Another recurring feature in the conceptual history of schizophrenia is the reference to concepts of self and person. This paper brings in connection these two debates by interrogating the nosological function of “self” and “person” by means of a fictitious dialogue between Eugen Bleuler, the inventor of schizophrenia, and his contemporary Arthur Kronfeld. Introducing their respective accounts of schizophrenia with a special focus on how concepts of self and person figure therein, our analysis suggests that these concepts are primarily employed in an attempt to guarantee the nosological unity of schizophrenia: mediated by the concept of a core disturbance, alterations of the self or the person thus become the essential core of schizophrenia. Yet, rather than providing an easy solution to the nosological problem of the unity of schizophrenia, the concepts of self and person and their assumed disturbances are themselves fraught with debates about unity. We discuss these conceptual challenges in light of present-day nosological debates and the currently abounding research on the self.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:August 2017
Deposited On:30 Aug 2017 13:17
Last Modified:19 Feb 2018 08:35
Publisher:Karger
ISSN:0254-4962
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1159/000479071
Official URL:https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/479071

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