Front cover image for Anxiety : a short history

Anxiety : a short history

More people today report feeling anxious than ever before, even while living in relatively safe and prosperous modern societies. Almost one in five people experiences an anxiety disorder each year, and more than a quarter of the population admits to an anxiety condition at some point in their lives. Here the author, a sociologist of mental illness and mental health, narrates how this condition has been experienced, understood, and treated through the ages, from Hippocrates, through Freud, to today. Anxiety is rooted in an ancient part of the brain, and our ability to be anxious is inherited from species far more ancient than humans. Anxiety is often adaptive: it enables us to respond to threats. But when normal fear yields to what psychiatry categorizes as anxiety disorders, it becomes maladaptive. As the author explores the history and multiple identities of anxiety including melancholia, nerves, neuroses, phobias, and so on, it becomes clear that every age has had its own anxieties and that culture plays a role in shaping how anxiety is expressed. -- From Publisher's website
Print Book, English, ©2013
Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, ©2013
xvi, 190 pages ; 22 cm.
9781421410807, 142141080X
Classical anxiety
From medicine to religion and back
The nineteenth century's new uncertainties
The Freudian revolution
Psychology's ascendance
The age of anxiety
The future of anxiety