The concept of pathology has a built-in normative character. An individual (or a state) is pathological if and only if it is not normal, that is, if it fails to be as an individual (or a state) of that sort ought to be. In other words, a pathological individual (or state) is an individual (or state) that does not conform to the standards to which all the individuals (or states) falling under its very sortal concept must conform. When applied to mental disorders, this view entails that the concept of psychopathology has a normative character. A human being is psychopathic if and only if he fails to have the mental capacities that are normal for humans, that is, the mental capacities that humans ought to have. Human specific mental capacities include emotional responses to the environment, as well as perceptual and cognitive abilities. Let us call this the “received view of psychopathology.” The received view has two main implications concerning psychiatry. The first implication is that psychiatry is ethically relevant, in two respects. First, the results of psychopathology may help to define what is normal for humans, and thus psychiatry may help to determine ethical norms. Second, the psychiatric treatment of mental disorders rests on various assumptions concerning what is normal for humans, and thus psychiatry has profound ethical bearings. The second implication of the received view of psychopathology is what we could call the “universal treatment thesis.”

Evolutionary psychopharmacology, mental disorders, and ethical behavior / Canali, S.; De Anna, G.; Pani, L.. - (2006), pp. 97-120. [10.1017/CBO9780511498428.008]

Evolutionary psychopharmacology, mental disorders, and ethical behavior

Canali S.;De Anna G.;Pani L.
2006

Abstract

The concept of pathology has a built-in normative character. An individual (or a state) is pathological if and only if it is not normal, that is, if it fails to be as an individual (or a state) of that sort ought to be. In other words, a pathological individual (or state) is an individual (or state) that does not conform to the standards to which all the individuals (or states) falling under its very sortal concept must conform. When applied to mental disorders, this view entails that the concept of psychopathology has a normative character. A human being is psychopathic if and only if he fails to have the mental capacities that are normal for humans, that is, the mental capacities that humans ought to have. Human specific mental capacities include emotional responses to the environment, as well as perceptual and cognitive abilities. Let us call this the “received view of psychopathology.” The received view has two main implications concerning psychiatry. The first implication is that psychiatry is ethically relevant, in two respects. First, the results of psychopathology may help to define what is normal for humans, and thus psychiatry may help to determine ethical norms. Second, the psychiatric treatment of mental disorders rests on various assumptions concerning what is normal for humans, and thus psychiatry has profound ethical bearings. The second implication of the received view of psychopathology is what we could call the “universal treatment thesis.”
Evolutionary Ethics and Contemporary Biology
9780521856294
Cambridge University Press
Evolutionary psychopharmacology, mental disorders, and ethical behavior / Canali, S.; De Anna, G.; Pani, L.. - (2006), pp. 97-120. [10.1017/CBO9780511498428.008]
Canali, S.; De Anna, G.; Pani, L.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11380/1212071
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