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2019 - 2020 Modern Volume 12

The Idiots, Insane and Mad: How projections of mental illness in Indian lunatic asylums protected British imperialism.

By Shaye Mistry It becomes an almost impossible task to single out how colonial Britain saw mental health in a period of high colonialism. In the contemporary, however,  psychiatric science was by its very nature a by-product of colonialism. In India, traditional methods of healing and dealing with madness were common and available to the …

2019 - 2020 Modern Volume 12

The Importance of Teaching Colonial History to Tackle Contemporary Racism

By Rebecca Mason The Holocaust has been remembered in history as one of the most devastating atrocities on behalf of humanity. The large-scale and centrally coordinated genocidal attack on minority groups, mostly constituting of Jews, possesses the largest magnitude of deaths in history. Yet, the many other acts of genocides that were of consistent occurrence …

Print of Middlesex County Asylum and grounds at Hanwell, 1843
2019 - 2020 Modern Volume 12

Asylums, Optimism, and Moral Treatment: Was Victorian mental health care as cruel as we believe?

By Kerry Lindeque When we picture Victorian-era asylums and mental illness images of brutal treatment, inadequate living conditions and physical punishment come to mind. But this was not always the case. In the early 1800s, attitude towards care of the mentally ill shifted away from security and containment and towards a system that ‘aimed to …