The Lunatic Asylum has loomed large in the public imagination since its very establishment as an institution. We have never been sure what to do with the mad, to use the vernacular of a bygone era. Despite our admitted ineptitude, we have been more than willing to try and do something with them for ages. Most of the things we did for most of recorded history have been horrifying, barbaric and ineffective. Join us this week as we explore the history of asylums and treatments for the mentally ill. We will discuss Nellie Bly’s breakthrough account of her experiences in the Blackwell’s Asylum, and the documentary that recorded World War II veterans’ experience PTSD, ‘Let There Be Light’. We will even spend a little time discussing the death of George Washington, and being glad that medicine has made a few advances since then.
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