I have always been a fan of Brattleboro, Vermont, since it is the first town you cross once you drive into Vermont on Route 91. I knew such a quant town would have some history so I dove right into researching Brattleboro online. What I found was far from quant. An insane asylum was erected in Brattleboro, Vermont in 1843 called Brattleboro Retreat, “a 1000 acre comprehensive mental health center… consists of 58 building and sites, 38 which are contributing historic structures that date from 1838 to 1938” (Rootsweb). The asylum was originally named the Vermont Asylum for the Insane. The asylum admitted any individuals who displayed legal insanity; “ legal insanity was defined as anything other than normal. Treatment included work around the asylum, attending chapel, exercising in the gymnasium and playing games in the amusement hall like croquet, billiards, and bowling”(Insanity). Doctors believed physical labor could cure mental illness and used patients from the facility to construct each building, including the Brattleboro Retreat Tower to deal with the influx of patients in the 1900’s. Treatment at the asylum seemed stagnant, as, “about 65% of patients discharged would later return, proving that while treatments were getting deeper into the heart of mental illness, many advancements were needed” (Insanity). Another large issue with treatment was it lacked conclusive results and as a consequence, “ efforts were made to prevent mental illness from becoming chronic, despite only four patients being released from 1878-1910” (Insanity). …show more content…
After the patients completed building it, one of the highest towers at the facility, it was only open between 1887-1889. Due to the lack of useful treatment for the patients, “the tower was closed shortly after being built because too many patients jumped to their death”
Shocked to see prisoners devoid of medical and moral treatment in damp, cold quarters, Dix vowed to end the barbaric and revolting degradation. Very little of the population knew or cared about the mentally ill’s peril, and Dix’s crusade changed the way the mentally ill were received. Dix not only shed light on the nation’s most perplexing problem, she fearlessly shoved the issue squarely into the center of public policy, broadcasting the issue through her written account On Behalf of the Insane and Poor. Dix constructed 32 hospitals and 13 asylums throughout America and Europe (Reddi, 2005, para. 6). Most of these symbols of hope and progress are still standing today.
The hospital suffered through a harsh fire that occurred in 1936, where it destroyed almost all of the section where the administration was. They later began to build a much newer structure in the 20th century where now, not much of the original structure exists. Within the early years of the hospital, it was known as a custodial facility, where patients would be hospitalized for an extent period of time.
Before Dix, the mentally ill were treated like animals. Insane people have been poorly treated all throughout history. The insane were physically and sexually abused in dirty cells with many other people (Reddi; Asylum 19th). If one was a lunatic or mentally impaired, then one was viewed as a criminal and housed accordingly (Asylum 19th). Many religions saw that insanity was a result of great sin or demonic possession (Asylum 19th).
Not only is the procedure torturous, but also truly harms their health. Chief Bromden often alludes to his fear of the procedure and “being sucked through that door.” He exemplifies the powerlessness the patients have when denying
People find it intriguing how mental health was poorly treated in the 1800’s. They were abandoned, until Eli Todd came along. For example, Eli Todd has innovated mental health with better tactics. He treated them with care and compassion. After his late sister passed, he vowed to do his best for anyone suffering mentally, leading him to build the retreat with $300k.
Introduction Prior to the mid-1960 virtually all mental health treatment was provided on an inpatient basis in hospitals and institutions. The Community Mental Health Act of 1963 was established with its primary focus on deinstitutionalizing mentally ill patients, and shutting down asylums in favor of community mental health centers. It was a major policy shift in mental health treatment that allowed patients to go home and live independently while receiving treatment, (Pollack & Feldman, 2003). As a result of the Act, there was a shift of mentally ill persons in custodial care in state institutions to an increase of the mentally ill receiving prosecutions in criminal courts.
In the book Girl, Interrupted, by Susanna Kaysen, one of the biggest focal points is mental illness. Mental illness can be tough to talk about, simply because the phrase “mental illness” encompasses such a wide range of conditions and conjures up images of deranged people, but it is very important, especially in this book. There is a certain stigma that people who are put into mental hospitals because they have medical problems or are insane and a possible danger to society. While this is sometimes true, it is far more common for patients to need help for a disorder, but just don’t know where to go or what to do, and can end up putting themselves or someone else in danger.
When people hear the words, “mental illness,” they think of insane asylums and psychiatric wards, but that’s not necessarily the case. Yes, back in the 1800’s they did have asylums for people with mental disorders. But that was when doctors didn’t fully understand mental illnesses and disorders. But currently, doctors are able to comprehend illnesses and disorders.
In the book “One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest” Ken Kesey shows that the “insanity” of the patients is really just normal insecurities and their label as insane by society is immoral. This appears in the book concerning Billy Bibbits problem with his mom, Harding's problems with his wife, and that the patients are in the ward
Taking a Stand for the mentally ill Thesis Dorothea Dix took a stand by recognizing the importance of establishing mental institutions. Her philosophy saved mentally unstable people from the harsh treatments they once received in jails Background The conditions that the mentally ill lived under in the mid-19th century were unfitting. Unstable individuals were imprisoned and mistreated. People who suffered from insanity were treated worse than criminals.
What exactly defines one as “insane” versus “sane”, and where is the boundary between the two? Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper” explores exactly that: the short story initially seems to be a tale of a 19th century woman forced into the notorious rest cure popularized at the time by male doctors--however, as the plot progresses, it becomes a much deeper commentary not only on societal limitations imposed on women, but also on the blurred line separating sanity from insanity. Gilman explores the boundary between sanity and insanity with the usage of different literary elements; she expresses how the boundary is “paper-thin” through the usage of symbolism, shows the subtle conversion to insanity by utilizing a stream of consciousness
Occupational Therapy began to emerge in the 1700s, during the “Age of Enlightment”. It was during this period that revolutionary ideas were evolving regarding the “infirmed” and mentally ill. At that time in history, the mentally ill were treated like prisoners; locked up and considered to be a danger to society. It wasn’t until two gentlemen; Phillipe Pinel and William Tuke started to challenge society’s belief about the mentally ill, that a new understanding, philosophy, and treatment would emerge. Phillipe Pinel began what was then called “Moral Treatment and Occupation”, as an approach to treating mental illness, in 1973.
It is obvious that medical treatment can be very helpful for the patient and would provide results. However simple companionship may also help as they could simply talk about their problem. Counselling might actually help more than medical treatment which may have more of a negative effect emotionally on the patient. Medical treatment aims to heal the patients so they can return and function properly in society however this is not the case in ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ written by Ken Kasey. In his novel the mental institution serves as a method to keep the patients away from society and doesn’t function to help the men but to keep them passive.
Even of the patients are mentally disable and some cant express clearly, they still manage to form a strong social bond with the regular people. During the 1970’s President Kennedy passed a health reform act in which psychiatry was reevaluated, and insane asylums were shutting down. The given number 160,000 was lowest at the time as more asylums designed to isolate patients were converting to a therapeutic haling centers