Mentalism, Madness and the Mind: Student Conference

Boston, MA
Saturday, May 1, 2010

This Student Conference was inspired by the discussions of Professor Liah Greenfeld’s Modernity Seminar participants from the 2009-2010 academic year.  These discussions addressed the relationship between culture and the mind by examining mental illness of unknown etiology–schizophrenia and manic depressive illness–in an historical comparative perspective.  The panelists’ bring their diverse backgrounds–trained in disciplines including sociology, anthropology, political theory, philosophy, and neuroscience– to bear on their presentations on mentalism, madness, and the mind.

1:00 pm

Opening Remarks by Katrina Demulling [Audio]

1:10 pm – 3:00 pm

Panel I: Comparing Mentalism with Existing Explanations of the Mind and Culture

David Phillippi, “Evolutionary Psychology: A Stone Age Mindset” [Audio] [TEXT]

Mark Simes, “Social Neuroscience: Premises and Promises” [Audio]

Discussion Session #1 [Audio]

3:20 – 5:50 pm

Panel II:  Understanding Mental Health and Mental Disease

Ben Solomon, ” A Cultural Prescription: The Key to Psychological Recovery” [Audio]

Henry Feng, “Red Badge of Courage, Invisible Scars of War: Understanding Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Through the Broken Identities of Combat Veterans” [Audio]

Discussion Session #2 [Audio]

15 minute break

Anna Graves, “Pregnancy Cravings through the Lens of Medical Anthropology” [Audio]

Javier Soler, “Megalomania in Modernity” [Audio]

Discussion Session #3 [Audio]

5:50 pm

Concluding Remarks by Prof. Liah Greenfeld [Audio]