mental health

Riki's picture

The Emperor's New Drugs


Controversial news has broken loose in the mental health community: antidepressants are hardly better than placebos!

kgould's picture

Tackling Trauma

 Kathryn Gould

Professor Grobstein


14 May 2010

Tackling Trauma

natmackow's picture

Exploring Emotion and Social Interactions in Autism

    Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are serious neurological disorders, which usually present themselves in an individual before three years of age. The spectrum refers to the wide variety in severity and type of characteristics. Young autistic individuals generally appear physically normal but engage in a variety of bizarre activities that are markedly different from those of other children their age. They often appear disconnected, self-absorbed, and avoid major and minor routine changes. Both autistic children and adults are generally seen (to varying degrees) to be impaired socially and emotionally, as extremely sensitive to loud noises, lights or smells, and as having difficulty with language as well (9).

natmackow's picture

Oliver Sacks: An Anthropologist on Mars

    Oliver Sacks’ novel, An Anthropologist on Mars, contains seven fascinating and strange neurobiological stories that explore unique perceptions and experiences of both the world and oneself in the world. The first tale, “The Colorblind Painter”, is about Jonathan I., a painter who, after an accident, lost his ability to perceive color in the world, his memories, and even his dreams. He could not remember what color ever looked like (the entire concept was obliterated from his brain), yet, intriguingly, it was determined that he could discriminate wavelengths of light.

jrlewis's picture

The Menu of Wits: A Five-Course Prix Fixe Meal

If a course syllabus is a menu for a classroom experience, then here is my summary of the House of Wits Course 2010.  Each dish is a culinary representation of the James family member it is matched with opposite.  Anyone with allergies to pragmatism or relativism should avoid the preparations of William James.  They will result in a strong reaction.  They are arranged in reverse chronological order as the course primarily was.  Note how all the dishes work together... do they form a coherent meal?  Are their clashes in flavor?  Repetition?  All this is designed to bring out the family dynamics of the James.  Enjoy the meal!!!  And feel free to comment on your favorite dishes and personalities. 



exsoloadsolem's picture

Image and Metaphor: Alice James Revisited


At the beginning of this semester in House of Wits, I was amazed by how struck I was by Alice James’ diary. I immediately felt an inexplicable affinity with Alice, her commonplace book-cum-diary, and her infectious use of language. It was one of the first times that I explicitly recall feeling such camaraderie with an author, let alone one who penned her only published work (excluding her letters) nearly 120 years ago.

aseidman's picture

Vigil - A Play


The Death (or Life) of Alice James

By Arielle Seidman

April 29, 2010

House of Wits

Cast of Characters

ALICE – A dying diarist, who has spent most of her life in bed.

HENRY – Her brother, an unmarried novelist.

WILLIAM – Their brother, a conflicted philosopher, and teacher.






It’s another depressing piece. I apologize. Next time, I’ll give you an example of my comedic writing. That stuff is much better.

aseidman's picture

House of Wits Performance Piece - Alice Monologue


Script Piece for House of Wits Performance

By Arielle Seidman


The following is a scene in which Alice James discusses her brother, William. This is a piece of fiction, based on the opinions, theories, and personalities of these two, and what I have learned about them in this class.

WARNING: This is depressing! (You probably expected that…Alice and William weren’t exactly comedic types.)

The other two pieces used in this presentation are not featured here. They were written and performed in class by Marina Morrison, and Alex Marrerro.


Believe You Me

By Arielle Seidman


jrf's picture


As was (I think) suggested in class today, I watched the last episode of Season 5 of House ("Both Sides Now"), in which House overdoses on Vicodin, hallucinates most of the episode's events, and is finally checked into a psychiatric hospital, and moved on to the first episode of Season 6 ("Broken"), which follows House's adventures in detox and then in the long-term psychiatric ward.

lfrontino's picture

The Female Brain

Book Commentary

Liz Frontino

The Female Brain by Louann Brizendine

Louann Brizendine uses her book “The Female Brain” to shed some light for the masses on the puzzling differences between men and women, by using human interest in order to engage the readers on this interesting topic. This topic has been one of increasing interest to me, especially upon entering college and being exposed to so many different types of men and women.

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