Divided Minds and Successive Selves: Ethical Issues in Disorders of Identity and Personality

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MIT Press, 1996 - Psychology - 311 pages
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If people change radically as a result of mental disturbance or brain damage or disease, how should we acknowledge that change in the way in which we respond to them? And how should society and the law acknowledge that change, particularly in cases of multiple-personality and manic-depressive disorders? This book addresses these and a cluster of other questions about changes in the self through time and about the moral attitudes we adopt in the face of these changes. The result is a broad-ranging interdisciplinary discussion at the boundaries of psychiatry, philosophy, law, and social policy. Theories of personal identity are applied to, and clarified in light of, the appearance of multiple selves in a variety of personality and identity disturbances.Divided minds force us to clarify our thinking about human subjectivity, Radden points out, and when they result in a succession of "selves," they provoke interesting ethical and legal issues. Radden provides a clear and thorough discussion of basic issues faced by clinicians and philosophers contending with the unity of consciousness and personal identity, particularly in the area of dissociative disorders, where issues of unity of consciousness have a direct impact on clinical and forensic decisions.Part 1 takes up the divisions and heterogeneities associated first with the normal self and then with the pathological self and identifies a "language of successive selves." Part 2 provides an extended analysis of personal responsibility and culpability with regard to extreme multiplicity. Part 3 takes up the notion of a metaphysics of successive selves. And part 4 addresses theoretical concerns associated with clinical material in an effort to further our understanding of the concepts of self-consciousness and subjectivity.A Bradford Book

 

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Contents

A Readers Guide
10
A Touchstone
23
Multiplicity through Dissociation
37
DissociativeIdentity Disorder as Entrenched SelfDeception
54
Personality Change Due to Mood and Schizophrenic Disorders
61
Akrasia and Disorders of Impulse Control
68
Metaphysical Conclusions from Moral Convictions
83
The Forensic Sense of Self
92
Will Want Reasoning and Thank You Theory
157
Advance Directives or Ulysses Contracts in Psychiatry
163
SelfDestructive Wishes
172
A Metaphysics of Successive Selves
183
Interpreting the Criteria of Survival or Singularity
191
Does Continuity Matter?
197
SelfUnderstanding
203
Therapeutic Goals for a Liberal Culture
209

Foreseeability and Prevention
99
Real Selves and Responsibility
105
Therapeutic Contexts
111
Legal Contexts and Purposes
117
Multiplicity and Legal Culpability
125
The Insanity Defense
131
Diminished Capacity
137
Paternalistic Intervention
143
Restoring the Authentic Self
150
SelfKnowledge in Insight Therapies
215
Continuity Sufficient for Individualism
227
Continuity Sufficient for Trust
233
Continuity Sufficient for Virtues
234
Subjective Evidence for Divided Minds
248
The Meaning of Disowned Experience
263
References
291
Index
307
Copyright

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About the author (1996)

Jennifer Radden is Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Massachusetts at Boston.

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