On This Day … 25 October

People (Births)

  • 1918 – David Ausubel, American psychologist (d. 2008).
  • 1927 – Lawrence Kohlberg, American psychologist and author (d. 1987).
  • 1977 – Birgit Prinz, German footballer and psychologist.

People (Deaths)

  • 1826 – Philippe Pinel, French physician and psychiatrist (b. 1745).

David Ausubel

David Paul Ausubel (25 October 1918 to 09 July 2008) was an American psychologist. His most significant contribution to the fields of educational psychology, cognitive science, and science education learning was on the development and research on “advance organizers” since 1960.

He studied at the University of Pennsylvania where he graduated with honors in 1939, receiving a bachelor’s degree majoring in psychology. Ausubel later graduated from medical school in 1943 at Middlesex University where he went on to complete a rotating internship at Gouverneur Hospital, located in the lower east side of Manhattan, New York. Following his military service with the US Public Health Service, Ausubel earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in developmental psychology from Columbia University in 1950. He continued to hold a series of professorships at several schools of education.

In 1973, Ausubel retired from academic life and devoted himself to his psychiatric practice. During his psychiatric practice, Ausubel published many books as well as articles in psychiatric and psychological journals. In 1976, he received the Thorndike Award from the American Psychological Association for “Distinguished Psychological Contributions to Education”.

Lawrence Kohlberg

Lawrence Kohlberg (25 October 1927 to 09 January 1987) was an American psychologist best known for his theory of stages of moral development.

He served as a professor in the Psychology Department at the University of Chicago and at the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University. Even though it was considered unusual in his era, he decided to study the topic of moral judgment, extending Jean Piaget’s account of children’s moral development from twenty-five years earlier. In fact, it took Kohlberg five years before he was able to publish an article based on his views. Kohlberg’s work reflected and extended not only Piaget’s findings but also the theories of philosophers George Herbert Mead and James Mark Baldwin. At the same time he was creating a new field within psychology: “moral development”.

In an empirical study using six criteria, such as citations and recognition, Kohlberg was found to be the 30th most eminent psychologist of the 20th century.

Birgit Prinz

Birgit Prinz (born 25 October 1977) is a German retired footballer, two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup champion and three-time FIFA World Player of the Year.

In addition to the German national team, Prinz played for 1. FFC Frankfurt in the Frauen-Bundesliga as well as the Carolina Courage in the Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA), the first professional women’s league in the United States. Prinz remains one of the game’s most prolific strikers and is the second FIFA Women’s World Cup all-time leading scorer with 14 goals (second only to Marta from Brazil). On 12 August 2011, she announced the end of her active career.

She currently works as a sport psychologist for the men’s and women’s teams of 1. Bundesliga club TSG 1899 Hoffenheim.

Philippe Pinel

Philippe Pinel (20 April 1745 to 25 October 1826) was a French physician, precursor of psychiatry and incidentally a zoologist. He was instrumental in the development of a more humane psychological approach to the custody and care of psychiatric patients, referred to today as moral therapy. He worked for the abolition of the shackling of mental patients by chains and, more generally, for the humanisation of their treatment. He also made notable contributions to the classification of mental disorders and has been described by some as “the father of modern psychiatry”.

After the French Revolution, Dr. Pinel changed the way we look at the crazy (or “aliénés”, “alienated” in English) by claiming that they can be understood and cured. An 1809 description of a case that Pinel recorded in the second edition of his textbook on insanity is regarded by some as the earliest evidence for the existence of the form of mental disorder later known as dementia praecox or schizophrenia, although Emil Kraepelin is generally accredited with its first conceptualisation.

“Father of modern psychiatry”, he was credited with the first classification of mental illnesses. He had a great influence on psychiatry and the treatment of the alienated in Europe and the United States.

On This Day … 22 October

People (Births)

  • 1920 – Timothy Leary, American psychologist and author (d. 1996).

People (Deaths)

  • 1952 – Ernst Rüdin, Swiss psychiatrist, geneticist, and eugenicist (b. 1874).
  • 1979 – Mieko Kamiya, Japanese psychiatrist and author (b. 1914).

Timothy Leary

Timothy Francis Leary (22 October 1920 to 31 May 1996) was an American psychologist and writer known for his strong advocacy of psychedelic drugs. Evaluations of Leary are polarised, ranging from bold oracle to publicity hound. He was “a hero of American consciousness”, according to Allen Ginsberg, and Tom Robbins called him a “brave neuronaut.”

As a clinical psychologist at Harvard University, Leary worked on the Harvard Psilocybin Project from 1960 to 1962. He tested the therapeutic effects of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and psilocybin, which were still legal in the United States at the time, in the Concord Prison Experiment and the Marsh Chapel Experiment. The scientific legitimacy and ethics of his research were questioned by other Harvard faculty because he took psychedelics along with research subjects and pressured students to join in. However, the claims that Leary pressured unwilling students are refuted by at least one of Leary’s students, Robert Thurman. Leary and his colleague, Richard Alpert (who later became known as Ram Dass), were fired from Harvard University in May 1963. Many people of the time only came to know of psychedelics after the Harvard scandal.

Leary believed that LSD showed potential for therapeutic use in psychiatry. He used LSD himself and developed a philosophy of mind expansion and personal truth through LSD. After leaving Harvard, he continued to publicly promote the use of psychedelic drugs and became a well-known figure of the counterculture of the 1960s. He popularized catchphrases that promoted his philosophy, such as “turn on, tune in, drop out”, “set and setting”, and “think for yourself and question authority”. He also wrote and spoke frequently about transhumanist concepts of space migration, intelligence increase, and life extension (SMI²LE). Leary developed the eight-circuit model of consciousness in his book Exo-Psychology (1977) and gave lectures, occasionally billing himself as a “performing philosopher.”

During the 1960s and 1970s, he was arrested 36 times worldwide. President Richard Nixon once described Leary as “the most dangerous man in America”.

Ernst Rudin

Ernst Rüdin (19 April 1874 to 22 October 1952) was a Swiss-born German psychiatrist, geneticist, eugenicist and Nazi. Rising to prominence under Emil Kraepelin and assuming his directorship at what is now called the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich. While he has been credited as a pioneer of psychiatric inheritance studies, he also argued for, designed, justified and funded the mass sterilisation and clinical killing of adults and children.

Mieko Kamiya

Mieko Kamiya (神谷 美恵子, Kamiya Mieko, 12 January 1914 to 22 October 1979) was a Japanese psychiatrist who treated leprosy patients at Nagashima Aiseien Sanatorium.

She was known for translating books on philosophy. She worked as a medical doctor in the Department of Psychiatry at Tokyo University following World War II. She was said to have greatly helped the Ministry of Education and the General Headquarters, where the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers stayed, in her role as an English-speaking secretary, and served as an adviser to Empress Michiko. She wrote many books as a highly educated, multi-lingual person; one of her books, titled On the Meaning of Life (Ikigai Ni Tsuite in Japanese), based on her experiences with leprosy patients, attracted many readers.

On This Day … 12 October

Events

People (Births)

  • 1925 – Denis Lazure, Canadian psychiatrist and politician (d. 2008).
  • 1929 – Robert Coles, American psychologist, author, and academic.

People (Deaths)

  • 1948 – Susan Sutherland Isaacs, English psychologist and psychoanalyst (b. 1885).

Eastern State Hospital (Virginia)

Eastern State Hospital is a psychiatric hospital in Williamsburg, Virginia. Built in 1773, it was the first public facility in the present-day United States constructed solely for the care and treatment of the mentally ill. The original building had burned but was reconstructed in 1985.

Denis Lazure

Denis Lazure (12 October 1925 to 23 February 2008) was a Canadian psychiatrist and politician. Lazure was a Member of the National Assembly of Quebec (MNA) from 1976 to 1984 and from 1989 to 1996. He is the father of actress Gabrielle Lazure.

Lazure attended Université de Montréal and was a doctorate in medicine. He also attended the University of Pennsylvania in psychiatry as well as the University of Toronto in which he was bachelor in hospital administration.

Lazure was the founder of the infant psychiatry department of Saint-Justine Hospital in 1957. He was also the director of this hospital as well as those of Riviere-des-Prairies and Louis-Hippolyte Lafontaine all in the Montreal region. He would later be the director in 1974 of the first psychiatric hospital in Haiti. He was also a teacher at Université de Montréal and was the President of the Canadian Association of Psychiatrists.

Robert Coles

Robert Coles (born 12 October 1929) is an American author, child psychiatrist, and professor emeritus at Harvard University.

Born Martin Robert Coles in Boston, Massachusetts on 12 October 1929, to Philip Coles, an immigrant from Leeds, England, United Kingdom, and Sandra Young Coles, originally from Sioux City, Iowa. Robert Coles attended Boston Latin School where he played tennis, ran track, and edited the school literary magazine. He entered Harvard College in 1946, where he studied English literature and helped to edit the undergraduate literary magazine, The Harvard Advocate. He graduated magna cum laude and earned Phi Beta Kappa honours in 1950.

Coles originally intended to become a teacher or professor, but as part of his senior honours thesis, he interviewed the poet and physician William Carlos Williams, who promptly persuaded him to go into medicine. He studied medicine at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, graduating in 1954. After residency training at the University of Chicago in Chicago, Illinois (the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine), Coles moved on to psychiatric residencies at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts (the two hospitals are affiliates of Harvard University and the Harvard University Medical School in Cambridge, Massachusetts).

Knowing that he was to be called into the US Armed Forces under the Doctor Draft, Coles joined the Air Force in 1958 and was assigned the rank of captain. His field of specialisation was psychiatry, his intention eventually to sub-specialise in child psychiatry. He served as chief of neuropsychiatric services at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi, and was honourably discharged in 1960. He returned to Boston and finished his child psychiatry training at the Children’s Hospital. In July 1960, he was married to Jane Hollowell, and the couple moved to New Orleans.

Susan Sutherland Isaacs

Susan Sutherland Isaacs, CBE (née Fairhurst; 24 May 1885 to 12 October 1948; also known as Ursula Wise) was a Lancashire-born educational psychologist and psychoanalyst. She published studies on the intellectual and social development of children and promoted the nursery school movement. For Isaacs, the best way for children to learn was by developing their independence. She believed that the most effective way to achieve this was through play, and that the role of adults and early educators was to guide children’s play.

In 1907, Isaacs enrolled to train as a teacher of young children (5 to 7-year-olds) at the University of Manchester. Isaacs then transferred to a degree course and graduated in 1912 with a first class degree in Philosophy. She was awarded a scholarship at the Psychological Laboratory in Newnham College, Cambridge and gained a master’s degree in 1913.

Isaacs also trained and practised as a psychoanalyst after analysis by the psychoanalyst John Carl Flugel (1884-1955). She became an associate member of the newly formed British Psychoanalytical Society in 1921, becoming a full member in 1923. She began her own practice that same year. She later underwent brief analysis with Otto Rank and in 1927 she submitted herself to further analysis with Joan Riviere, to get personal experience and understanding of Melanie Klein’s new ideas on infancy. Isaacs also helped popularise the works of Klein, as well as the theories of Jean Piaget and Sigmund Freud. She was initially enthusiastic for Jean Piaget’s theories on the intellectual development of young children, though she later criticised his schemas for stages of cognitive development, which were not based on the observation of the child in their natural environment, unlike her own observations at Malting House School.

Between 1924 and 1927, she was the head of Malting House School in Cambridge, which is an experimental school founded by Geoffrey Pyke. The school fostered the individual development of children. Children were given greater freedom and were supported rather than punished. The teachers were seen as observers of the children who were seen as research workers. Her work had a great influence on early education and made play a central part of a child’s education. Isaacs strongly believed that play was the child’s work.

Between 1929 and 1940, she was an ‘agony aunt’ under the pseudonym of Ursula Wise, replying to readers’ problems in several child care journals, notably The Nursery World and Home and School.

In 1933, she became the first Head of the Child Development Department at the Institute of Education, University of London, where she established an advanced course in child development for teachers of young children. Her department had a great influence on the teaching profession and encouraged the profession to consider psychodynamic theory with developmental psychology.

On This Day … 08 October

People (Births)

  • 1888 – Ernst Kretschmer, German psychiatrist and author (d. 1964).

Ernst Kretschmer

Ernst Kretschmer (08 October 1888 to 08 February 1964) was a German psychiatrist who researched the human constitution and established a typology.

Life

Kretschmer was born in Wüstenrot near Heilbronn. He attended Cannstatt Gymnasium, one of the oldest Latin schools in Stuttgart area. From 1906 to 1912 he studied theology, medicine, and philosophy at the universities of Tübingen, Munich and Hamburg. From 1913 he was assistant of Robert Gaupp in Tübingen, where he received his habilitation in 1918. He continued as assistant medical director until 1926.

In 1926 he became the director of the psychiatric clinic at Marburg University.

Kretschmer was a founding member of the International General Medical Society for Psychotherapy (AÄGP) which was founded on 12 January 1927. He was the president of AÄGP from 1929. In 1933 he resigned from the AÄGP for political reasons.

From 1946 until 1959, Kretschmer was the director of the psychiatric clinic of the University of Tübingen. He died, aged 75, in Tübingen.

Cooperating with the Nazis

After he resigned from the AÄGP, he started to support the SS and signed the “Vow of allegiance of the professors of the German universities and high-schools to Adolf Hitler and the National Socialistic state.” (German: “Bekenntnis der Professoren an den deutschen Universitäten und Hochschulen zu Adolf Hitler und dem nationalsozialistischen Staat”).

Scientific Contribution

Persistent Vegetative State and Sensitive Paranoia Research

Kretschmer was the first to describe the persistent vegetative state which has also been called Kretschmer’s syndrome. Another medical term coined after him is Kretschmer’s sensitive paranoia. This classification has the merit of singling out “a type of paranoia that was unknown” prior to Kretschmer, and which “does not resemble the stereotypical image […] of sthenic paranoia”. Furthermore, between 1915 and 1921 he developed a differential diagnosis between schizophrenia and manic depression.

Types of Physique

Kretschmer is also known for developing a classification system that can be seen as one of the earliest exponents of a constitutional (the total plan or philosophy on which something is constructed) approach. His classification system was based on four main body types:

  • Asthenic (thin, small, weak).
  • Athletic (muscular, large-boned).
  • Pyknic (stocky, fat).
  • Dysplastic (unproportionate body).

The concept of two great psychopathological types of manic-depressive or ‘circular’ insanity and dementia praecox (i. e. schizophrenia) was developed by Emil Kraepelin.

Each of these body types was associated by Kretschmer with certain personality traits and, in a more extreme form, mental disorders. He wrote that there is only a weak relation between Schizophrenics and pyknic body type on the one hand, and between Circulars (with the tendency to circular type of manic-depressive psychosis) and asthenics, athletics, and dysplastics on the other.[4] Among the schizophrenics also the asthenico–athletic types are very prevalent.[4] Kretschmer believed that pyknic persons were friendly, interpersonally dependent, and gregarious. In a more extreme version of these traits, this would mean for example that the obese are predisposed toward manic-depressive illness. Thin types were associated with introversion and timidity. This was seen as a milder form of the negative symptoms exhibited by withdrawn schizophrenics. However, the idea of the association of body types with personality traits is no longer influential in personality psychology.

The Temperaments

Kretschmer divided the temperaments into the two “constitutional groups”: schizothymic, which contain a “psychaesthetic proportion” between sensitive and cold poles, and cyclothymes which contain a “diathetic” proportion between raised (happy) and sad. The modern term for light version of ‘circular’ insanity is cyclothymia. Psychic tempo of schizothymic people is between unstable and tenacious and they have alternation mode of feeling and thought, and cyclothymes psychic tempo is between mobile and comfortable. Schizothymic’s psychomotility is often inadequate to stimulus: inhibited, restrained, lamed, stiff, etc., and psychomotility of cyclothymes is adequate to stimulus and natural. Cyclothymes are often pyknics, schizothymes – athletic, asthenic, dysplastic, and their mixtures.

The Schizoids consist of the hyperaesthetic (sensitive) and anaethetic (cold) characters.

On This Day … 07 October

People (Deaths)

  • 1926 – Emil Kraepelin, German psychiatrist and academic (b. 1856).

Emil Kraepelin

Emil Wilhelm Georg Magnus Kraepelin (15 February 1856 to 07 October 1926) was a German psychiatrist.

H.J. Eysenck’s Encyclopaedia of Psychology identifies him as the founder of modern scientific psychiatry, psychopharmacology and psychiatric genetics.

Kraepelin believed the chief origin of psychiatric disease to be biological and genetic malfunction. His theories dominated psychiatry at the start of the 20th century and, despite the later psychodynamic influence of Sigmund Freud and his disciples, enjoyed a revival at century’s end. While he proclaimed his own high clinical standards of gathering information “by means of expert analysis of individual cases”, he also drew on reported observations of officials not trained in psychiatry.

His textbooks do not contain detailed case histories of individuals but mosaic-like compilations of typical statements and behaviours from patients with a specific diagnosis. He has been described as “a scientific manager” and “a political operator”, who developed “a large-scale, clinically oriented, epidemiological research programme”.

On This Day … 04 October

People (Births)

  • 1929 – John E. Mack, American psychiatrist and author (d. 2004).

John E. Mack

John Edward Mack (04 October 1929 to 27 September 2004) was an American psychiatrist, writer, and professor and the head of the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. In 1977, Mack won the Pulitzer Prize for his book A Prince of Our Disorder on T.E. Lawrence.

As the head of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Mack’s clinical expertise was in child psychology, adolescent psychology, and the psychology of religion. He was also known as a leading researcher on the psychology of teenage suicide and drug addiction, and he later became a researcher in the psychology of alien abduction experiences.

What is a Psychiatric Advance Directive?

Introduction

A psychiatric advance directive (PAD), also known as a mental health advance directive, is a written document that describes what a person wants to happen if at some time in the future they are judged to be suffering from a mental disorder in such a way that they are deemed unable to decide for themselves or to communicate effectively.

It can inform others about what treatment they want or do not want from psychiatrists or other mental health professionals, and it can identify a person to whom they have given the authority to make decisions on their behalf. A mental health advance directive is one kind of advance health care directive.

Refer to Voluntary Commitment and Involuntary Commitment.

Legal Foundations

Psychiatric advance directives are legal documents used by persons currently enjoying legal capacity to declare their preferences and instructions for future mental health treatment, or to appoint a surrogate decision maker through Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPA), in advance of being targeted by coercive mental health laws, during which they may be stripped of legal capacity to make decisions.

In the United States, although 25 states have now passed legislation in the past decade establishing authority for PADs, there is relatively little public information available to address growing interest in these legal documents. In addition in states without explicit PAD statutes, very similar mental health advance care planning can and does take place under generic HCPA statutes – expanding the audience for PADs to all 50 states (refer to National Resource Centre on Psychiatric Advance Directives).

In addition, states are beginning to recognise legal obligations under the federal Patient Self-Determination Act of 1991, which includes informing all hospital patients that they have a right to prepare advance directives and – with certain caveats – that clinicians are obliged to follow these directives.

Finally, the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organisations (JCAHO) requires behavioural health facilities to ask patients if they have PADs. The Centres for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced that patients have the right to formulate advance directives and to have hospital staff and practitioners who provide coercive interventions in the hospital comply with these directives. Hospitals out of compliance risk loss of Medicare and Medicaid revenue.

Proponents of these directives believe thy of followed by treatment providers, crisis planning using PADs will help involuntary detainees retain control over their decision making – especially during times when they are labelled incompetent. Additionally, advocates argue that health care agents will be instrumental in providing inpatient clinicians with information that can be central to patients’ treatment, including history of side effects and relevant medical conditions.

Clinical Benefits

Recent data from a NIH-funded study conducted by researchers at Duke University has shown that creating a PAD with a trained facilitator increases therapeutic alliance with clinicians, enhances involuntary patients’ treatment satisfaction and perceived autonomy, and improves treatment decision-making capacity among people labelled with severe mental illness.

Moreover, PADs provide a transportable document – increasingly accessible through electronic directories – to convey information about a detainee’s treatment history, including medical disorders, emergency contact information, and medication side effects. Clinicians often have limited information about citizens detained and labelled as psychiatric patients who present or are coercively presented and labelled as in crisis. Nonetheless, these are the typical settings in which clinicians are called upon to make critical patient-management and treatment decisions, using whatever limited data may be available. With PADs, clinicians could gain immediate access to relevant information about individual cases and thus improve the quality of clinical decision-making – appropriately managing risk to patients and others’ safety while also enhancing patients’ long-term autonomy.

For these reasons, PADs are seen as an innovative and effective way of enhancing values of autonomy and social welfare for detainees labelled with mental illness. Since PADs are among the first laws that are specifically intended to promote autonomy among people detained under mental health laws, wider use of PADs would empower a traditionally disenfranchised group when targeted for coercive psychiatry.

Barriers

National surveys in the United States indicate that although approximately 70% of people targeted by coercive psychiatry laws would want a PAD if offered assistance in completing one, less than 10% have actually completed a PAD.

Some people detained and forcibly drugged under coercive psychiatry laws report difficulty in understanding advance directives, scepticism about their benefit, and lack of contact with a trusted individual who could serve as proxy decision maker. The sheer complexity of filling out these legal forms, obtaining witnesses, having the documents notarised, and filing the documents in a medical record or registry may pose a formidable barrier.

Recent studies of practitioners of coercive psychiatry’s attitudes about PADs suggest that they are generally supportive of these legal instruments, but have significant concerns about some features of PADs and the feasibility of implementing them in usual coercive intervention settings. Clinicians are concerned about lack of access to PAD documents in a commitment, lack of staff training on PADs, lack of communication between staff across different components of mental health systems, and lack of time to review the advance directive documents.

In a survey conducted of 600 psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers showed that the vast majority thought advance care planning for crises would help improve patients’ overall mental health care. Further, the more clinicians knew about PAD laws, the more favourable were their attitudes toward these practices. For instance, while most psychiatrists, social workers, and psychologists surveyed believed PADs would be helpful to people detained and targeted for forced drugging and electroshock when labelled with severe mental illnesses, clinicians with more legal knowledge about PAD laws were more likely to endorse PADs as a beneficial part of patients’ treatment planning.

However, many clinicians reported NOT knowing enough about how PADs work and specifically indicated they lacked resources to readily help patients fill out PADs. Thus, if clinicians knew more about advance directives and had ready assistance for creating PADs, they said they would be much more likely to help their clients develop crisis plans.

Resources

It thus has become clear that the potential significance of PADs is becoming widely recognized among those targeted for coercive psychiatry, survivors of coercive psychiatry, influential policy makers, clinicians, family members, and patient advocacy groups but that significantly more concerted efforts at dissemination were needed. The community of stakeholders interested in PADs and the broader concept of self-directed care are in need of online resource and gathering place for exchange of views and information.

As a result, in the United States, a collaboration between the Bazelon Centre for Mental Health Law and Duke University has led to creation of the MacArthur Foundation-funded National Resource Center on Psychiatric Advance Directives, the only web portal exclusively devoted to developing a learning community to help people targeted for coercive psychiatry, their families, and clinicians prepare for, and ultimately prevent, coercive psychiatry interventions. The NRC-PAD includes basic information, frequently asked questions, educational webcasts, web blog, most recent research, legal analyses, and state-by-state information on PADs and patient-centred crisis planning. The NRC-PAD website thus includes easy step-by-step information to help those targeted for forced drugging, family, and clinicians complete PADs that mirror the provisions in the PAD statutes.

On This Day … 29 September

People (Births)

  • 1934 – Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Hungarian-American psychologist and academic.

People (Deaths)

  • 2007 – Yıldırım Aktuna, Turkish psychiatrist and politician, Turkish Minister of Health (b. 1930).

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (Hungarian: Csíkszentmihályi Mihály, born 29 September 1934) is a Hungarian-American psychologist.

He recognised and named the psychological concept of flow, a highly focused mental state conducive to productivity. He is the Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Management at Claremont Graduate University. He is the former head of the department of psychology at the University of Chicago and of the department of sociology and anthropology at Lake Forest College.

Yıldırım Aktuna

Yıldırım Aktuna (1930 to 29 September 2007) was a Turkish psychiatrist, politician, district mayor and government minister in a number of cabinets.

Military Career

His first post was chief physician officer of the 26th Brigade at the 66th Army Division. After completing a one-year English language course at the Army Language School in Ankara, Aktuna was sent to the United States, where he attended advanced education in general medicine at the Brooke Army Medical Center in Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio between 1958-1959.

Having returned home, Aktuna specialised in neuropsychiatry at the Gülhane Military Medical Academy in Ankara, finishing in 1962. He then served in the army as medical officer at various places in Turkey. Between 1967-1989, he was lecturer at the Kabul Military Hospital in Afghanistan. In 1970, he retired from the Turkish Army in the rank of a lieutenant colonel.

Civil Service

Switched over to civil service, he firstly was appointed Assistant Chief Physician at the Psychology Clinic of Şişli Children’s Hospital in Istanbul. He later became the chief of that clinic.

Between 1972-1973, Aktuna sojourned in Austria to pursue advanced studies in neurology and electroencephalography (EEG) at the Neurological Clinic of the University of Vienna.

In 1979, Yıldırım Aktuna was appointed Chief Physician of the Bakırköy Psychiatric Hospital in Istanbul, the largest of its art in the country. He modernised the hospital, and devoted himself to raise consciousness for public mental health and to develop contemporary policies on this subject. He established in 1983 an alcohol and drug rehabilitation centre within this hospital, the first facility in Turkey to conduct medical and psychotherapeutic treatment and research for dependency on psychoactive substances as well. For these activities, he was honoured several times by various organisations.

On This Day … 27 September

People (Births)

  • 1913 – Albert Ellis, American psychologist and author (d. 2007).

People (Deaths)

  • 2004 – John E. Mack, American psychiatrist and author (b. 1929).

Albert Ellis

Albert Ellis (27 September 1913 to 24 July 2007) was an American psychologist and psychotherapist who founded Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT). He held MA and PhD degrees in clinical psychology from Columbia University, and was certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP). He also founded, and was the President of, the New York City-based Albert Ellis Institute. He is generally considered to be one of the originators of the cognitive revolutionary paradigm shift in psychotherapy and an early proponent and developer of cognitive-behavioural therapies.

Based on a 1982 professional survey of US and Canadian psychologists, he was considered the second most influential psychotherapist in history (Carl Rogers ranked first in the survey; Sigmund Freud was ranked third). Psychology Today noted that, “No individual—not even Freud himself—has had a greater impact on modern psychotherapy.”

John E. Mack

John Edward Mack (04 October 1929 to 27 September 2004) was an American psychiatrist, writer, and professor and the head of the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. In 1977, Mack won the Pulitzer Prize for his book A Prince of Our Disorder on T.E. Lawrence.

As the head of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Mack’s clinical expertise was in child psychology, adolescent psychology, and the psychology of religion. He was also known as a leading researcher on the psychology of teenage suicide and drug addiction, and he later became a researcher in the psychology of alien abduction experiences.

On This Day … 25 September

People (Births)

  • 1962 – Kalthoum Sarrai, Tunisian-French psychologist and journalist (d. 2010).

People (Deaths)

  • 1958 – John B. Watson, American psychologist and academic (b. 1878).
  • 2005 – Urie Bronfenbrenner, Russian-American psychologist and ecologist (b. 1917).
  • 2005 – M. Scott Peck, American psychiatrist and author (b. 1936).
  • 2013 – Bennet Wong, Canadian psychiatrist and academic, co-founded Haven Institute (b. 1930).

Kalthoum Sarrai

Kalthoum Sarrai كلثوم السراي in Arabic (25 September 1962 to 19 January 2010), best known as Cathy Sarrai, was a Tunisian-born French television presenter, anchorwoman and television personality. She was known to many French and Belgian television viewers for her role in the French version of Super Nanny, which began airing on M6 on 01 February 2005.

Sarrai was born in Tunis, Tunisia, on 25 September 1962, as one of seven children. She moved to France in 1979, where she studied child psychology before pursuing a successful career as a television presenter. Sarrai also authored three books, including an autobiography.

She began appearing on the French version of Super Nanny in 2005. The show, in which she taught parents basic child care and parenting techniques, attracted 3.7 million viewers in Belgium and France, making her a familiar personality on M6.

Kalthoum Sarrai died in Paris on Tuesday 19 January 2010, of cancer at the age of 47. She was buried in Tunis.

John B. Watson

John Broadus Watson (09 January 1878 to 25 September 1958) was an American psychologist who popularised the scientific theory of behaviourism, establishing it as a psychological school. Watson advanced this change in the psychological discipline through his 1913 address at Columbia University, titled Psychology as the Behaviourist Views It. Through his behaviourist approach, Watson conducted research on animal behaviour, child rearing, and advertising, as well as conducting the controversial “Little Albert” experiment and the Kerplunk experiment. He was also the editor of Psychological Review from 1910 to 1915. A Review of General Psychology survey, published in 2002, ranked Watson as the 17th most cited psychologist of the 20th century.

Urie Bronfenbrenner

Urie Bronfenbrenner (29 April 1917 to 25 September 2005) was a Russian-born American psychologist who is most known for his ecological systems theory.

His work with the United States government helped in the formation of the Head Start programme in 1965. Bronfenbrenner’s ability research was key in changing the perspective of developmental psychology by calling attention to the large number of environmental and societal influences on child development.

M. Scott Peck

Morgan Scott Peck (22 May 1936 to 25 September 2005) was an American psychiatrist and best-selling author who wrote the book The Road Less Travelled, published in 1978.

Peck served in administrative posts in the government during his career as a psychiatrist. He also served in the US Army and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. His army assignments included stints as chief of psychology at the Army Medical Centre in Okinawa, Japan, and assistant chief of psychiatry and neurology in the office of the surgeon general in Washington, DC. He was the medical director of the New Milford Hospital Mental Health Clinic and a psychiatrist in private practice in New Milford, Connecticut. His first and best-known book, The Road Less Travelled, sold more than 10 million copies.

Peck’s works combined his experiences from his private psychiatric practice with a distinctly religious point of view. In his second book, People of the Lie, he wrote, “After many years of vague identification with Buddhist and Islamic mysticism, I ultimately made a firm Christian commitment – signified by my non-denominational baptism on the ninth of March 1980…” (Peck, 1983/1988, p.11). One of his views was that people who are evil attack others rather than face their own failures.

Bennet Wong

Bennet Randall Wong (16 July 1930 to 25 September 2013), was a Canadian psychiatrist, author and lecturer who co-founded the Haven Institute, a residential experiential learning centre on the west coast of Canada, with Jock McKeen. His writings focused on mental illness, group psychotherapy, humanistic psychology and personal growth.

Individual Career

Wong was clinical director at the Winfield State Hospital in Winfield, Kansas, from 1957-1959. He then practised adolescent psychiatry in Vancouver, B.C., from 1961 until 1975. Wong was an early adopter of the encounter group process. During the late 1960s, he offered media comments on youth, including hosting a national television forum on youth on CBC-TV. He discussed many issues with Canada’s former Minister of Health and Welfare, Judy Lamarsh, and television journalist (and later Canadian senator) Laurier Lapierre. Throughout his career, he has been an advocate of humanistic approaches to dealing with children, adolescents and families. He incorporated the mind-body approaches of Wilhelm Reich into his work, as well as the perspectives of existential therapy. Wong was a member of the Board of Directors of Moffat Communications Ltd. for twenty-five years (1973-1999). He has been noted in Who’s Who in Canada. Wong was appointed as Visiting Professor of Humanistic Psychology at Hua Wei University in Shen Zhen, China, in 2007.

Partnership with Jock McKeen

After working in individual practices in Vancouver, B.C. (McKeen in acupuncture and Wong in adolescent psychiatry), they left private practice in 1975 to conduct residential growth groups at the Cold Mountain Institute on Cortes Island, British Columbia. After the demise of the Cold Mountain Institute in 1980, Wong and McKeen helped to establish the Cortes Centre for Human Development, and conducted seminars organized by this non-profit society until 1983, when they co-founded The Haven Institute. Wong and McKeen challenge the traditional medical model, encouraging physicians to be less objectifying, to develop more self-awareness and adopt a more holistic approach to patient care. Wong and McKeen have taught this integrative approach in Canada, US, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand as well as countries in Europe, South America, Africa and the Middle East.

Establishment of the Haven Institute

Wong and McKeen founded The Haven Institute in 1983, a residential experiential learning school on Gabriola Island, B.C., and were active in its development until 2004, when ownership was passed to The Haven Foundation. Both men were appointed Emeritus Faculty of The Haven Institute. They were both given honorary doctorates by Vancouver Island University for their work in establishing the Haven Institute.