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Emotional Disturbance and American Social Change, 1944-1969
H. STUART HUGHES
Am J Psychiatry 1969;126:21-28.
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Professor and chairman, department of history, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. 02138

1970, American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

The great social shocks of the mid-60s—war, riots, and assassinations—have convinced many of America's young people that our society is sick. While acknowledging that evidence of society's malfunctioning is tangible and irrefutable, the author believes there is something profoundly illiberal in the mental set that finds sickness all around us. Psychiatry, which grew up in a liberal historical context, is currently torn between a defense of its traditional standards and a temptation to appease the new tendencies. But he believes that in spite of pressures for quick answers and slipshod methods, there is no excuse for panic: the liberal temper of mind has not lost its relevance.

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