Revista Colombiana de Psiquiatría
Print version ISSN 0034-7450
SAMPSON, ANTHONY. FROM THE SOUL TO THE SUBJECT: ANCIENT EPISTEME AND MODERN SCIENCE IN PSYCHIATRY. rev.colomb.psiquiatr. [online]. 2000, vol.29, n.3, pp. 231-242. ISSN 0034-7450.
In antiquity philosophy was not a mere theoretical endeavour. It was a very practical affair that concerned itself with man's well being, for philosophy was conceived as therapy: psychotherapy. Medicine took care of the health of the body, philosophy of that of the psyche, soul, or mind in modern parlance. This división of labor lasted through all antiquity and pagan times. But the scientific revolution which ushered in modernity shattered the ancient episteme and the divine soul, dependent on the traditional notion of God, was no longer a rationally acceptable entity. The French revolution made society an entirely human construction with no need to recur to otherworldy principies. But the political revolution also gave birth to modern psychiatry. The opus magnum of Pinel can be recognized as the charter of this new foundation for the treatment of the mad: madness affects only a thinking subject, the subject made possible by science.
Keywords : Philosophy; Philosophy; Medical; Science.