Journal article

Engendering a Therapeutic Ethos: Modernity, Masculinity and Nervousness

Katie Wright

JOURNAL OF HISTORICAL SOCIOLOGY | WILEY-BLACKWELL PUBLISHING, INC | Published : 2009

Abstract

This article considers discourses of "nervousness" as an important historical dimension of the "therapeutic turn". By tracing an emerging therapeutic sensibility through Australian medical literature and the popular print media of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, it provides an Antipodean perspective on the discursive and cultural terrain receptive to Freudian ideas and psychology, which were central to the ascendancy of a psychotherapeutic ethos. Through a particular focus on concerns about "nervous men", the article explores how perceived problems of "nervousness" destabilized masculine ideals and helped engender a greater concern with personal distress, factors significa..

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