“Don’t Use John Nash To Promote The Use Of Antipsychotic Drugs”

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In The Guardian, Clare Allan recalls the objections of the recently deceased John Nash to the way the movie A Beautiful Mind suggested that antipsychotic medications helped him. He stopped taking any psychiatric medications for good in 1970, she writes, and often expressed how important it was for him to find his own balance between conventional and unconventional thinking.

Allan writes, “In a biographical essay, written at the time of his Nobel win, Nash described sanity as a form of conformity, and one about which he maintained a degree of ambivalence. ‘So, at the present time, I seem to be thinking rationally in the style that is characteristic of scientists,’ he wrote. ‘However, this is not entirely a matter of joy, as if someone [had] returned from physical disability to good physical health. One aspect of this is that rationality of thought imposes a limit on a person’s concept of his relation to the cosmos.’”

Don’t use John Nash to promote the use of anti-psychotic drugs (The Guardian, June 2, 2015)

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Not only that with the environments through which you “encounter” them as part of the equation. Saying to your face or for you to hear that you don’t know what you are doing when you suggest you would rather leave your hospital behind or try some other therapy routine is exactly calling you stupid in terms of their jargon. And it isn’t just a substitute way of declaring you “not competent to stand trial” either. They mean that you are some sort of biological goof-up and so take the drugs, take the drugs, take the drugs, and when your insurance runs out you can go. John Nash is really hitting us with a nice favor, in diverting the focus to something so grand and proud to connect your spirit and potential life meaning to, isn’t he? NIce to see that kind of follow through with him, still.

  2. I think the way the movie depicted schizophrenia also promoted treatment through medication. If I recall, Nash’s hallucinations were actually never visual. Removing that element alone would have entirely changed the movie I’m sure, making it less appealing. It’s a good thing the mentally ill are always around to “volunteer” credibility for the sake of entertainment.