Synopses & Reviews
The idea that multiple personalities can exist within the same body has long captured the Western imagination. From Three Faces of Eve to Sybil, from Pyscho to Raising Caine, from 60 Minutes to Oprah to One Life to Live, we are captivated by the fate of multiples who, divided against themselves, wreak havoc in the lives of others.
Why do we find multiple personality disorder (MPD) so fascinating? Perhaps because each of us is aware of a dividedness within ourselves: we often feel as if we are one person on the job, another with our families, another with our friends and lovers. We may fantasize that these inner discrepancies will someday break free, that within us lie other personalities--genius, lover, criminal--that will take us over and render us strangers to our very selves.
What happens when such a transformation literally occurs, when an alter personality surfaces and commits some heinous deed? What do we do when a Billy Milligan is arrested for a series of rapes and robberies, of which the original personality, Billy, is utterly oblivious? What happens when a Juanita Maxwell, taken over by her alter personality, Wanda, becomes enraged and commits a murder which would horrify Juanita? Who really committed these deeds? Are alter personalities people? Are they centers of consciousness which are akin to people? Mere parts of a deeply divided person? Who should held accountable for the crimes? Which is more appropriate--punishment or treatment?
In Jekyll on Trial, Elyn R. Saks carefully delineates how MPD forces us to re-examine our central concepts of personhood, responsibility, and punishment. Drawing on law, psychiatry, and philosophy, Saks explores the nature of alter personalities, and shows how different conceptualizations bear on criminal responsibility. A wide-ranging and deeply informed book, Jekyll on Trial is must reading for anyone interested in law, criminal justice, psychiatry, or human behavior.
"A thoughtful and thought-provoking exploration of how our criminal justice system should handle an increasingly common mental illness known as multiple personality disorder."-Georgetown Law Journal,
"A provocative study of a controversial topic. . . . Saks' analyses are always clear and incisive, comprehensible even when their premises and reasoning are unfamiliar and their conclusions surprising." -Psychiatric Services,
"Saks focuses exclusively on multiple personality, a controversial and only recently recognized mental disorder. The philosophical underpinnings that frame the legal questions of culpability, punishment, and competence to stand trial are examined and provide the background for the author's proposals for applicable legal rules. Highly recommended." -Library Journal,
Since Freud's first mention of object relations in his seminal paper Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, analysts have been arguing about its role in the psychological development and mental life of individuals. Essential Papers on Object Relations gathers together the critical papers by major figures in the field. Reflecting the changes and conflicts over the past hundred years, the volume includes the work of key scholars as they attempt to define, delineate, and describe object relations theory. It includes work by: Sigmund Freud, Melanie Klein, Arnold H. Modell, W. R. D. Fairbairn, Jacob A. Arlow, Annie Reich, John Bowlby, Margaret S. Mahler, Harry Guntrip, D. W. Winnicott, Joseph Sandler and Anne-Marie Sandler, Otto Kernberg, T. F. Main, Edith Jacobson, and Hans W. Loewald.
The book, which includes explanatory introductions to each part, is an invaluable resource for those seeking a thorough examination of object relations theory and the classical and contemporary work of major analytic thinkers. y.
About the Author
ELYN R. SAKS
is Orrin B. Evans Professor of Law, Psychology, and the Behavioral Sciences at the Law School of the University of Southern California.
STEPHEN H. BEHNKE is Director of the Program for the Practice of Scientific Integrity, and Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.