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“On Being Sane in Insane Places” Essay

It was very interesting to read about Rosenhan’s study and how psychiatrists, who go through big coursework and training, could wrongly classify a patient. It surprised me how some psychiatrists couldn’t say they don’t know what’s wrong with patients instead they could possibly diagnose someone as insane.

Though reading this chapter I found the strange things from Rosenhan’s study that was hard to believe. Slater states, “The strange thing was, the other patients seemed to know Rosenhan was normal, even while the doctors did not.” (69). I believe patients can know that better than doctors because they are in that situation already and some doctors don’t analyze their patients carefully to know what’s actually happening with them. For example, if someone studies about one culture doesn’t mean that person knows way better that person who actually lives with that culture. Both chapters I found interesting because it relates to my life very well. I found out Elliot Aronson, Darley and Latane all kind of try to show that people needs to find reason for their actions.

I believe each person as a human have to help everyone no matter what. Darley and Latane’s mention is about how to help someone in an emergency that relates with Catherine Genovse murder. Slater says, “You must interpret the event as one in which help is needed” (95). We read about Catherine’s murder and saw that after she had asked for help, someone yelled, leave that girl alone, instead of helping, and the only thing that happened was that the killer ran away (95). I agree with Darley and Latane’s that we need to know which help is needed and what help is not. The person may have helped with getting the killer away, but Catherine needed the help the most, so she wouldn’t die. I been in so many situations that someone needed my help and I helped as much as I could, but knowing what helped was needed help me a lot.

Leon Festinger talked about how people really pay attention to what is going on in their life and around them. I think some people just pay attention to what they want. Its true most of the people like to listen to people who agree with them and ignore who doesn’t. The chapter also discussed how people can believe in something they can’t prove such as God working through a person. I think even for believing a god it has many prove to make a person to believe it. I believe for believing on something need to have something as prove.

This section is a really great one however I didn’t prefer how the experiments were described. I additionally didn’t’ prefer the experiments and there result. Harlow was a fascinating man and I preferred how the author discusses the experimenter and how they grew up on the grounds that it permits me to understand their conclusions about their examinations and why they are imperative to them. I thought it was interesting that the monkeys adored the cover yet when they were displayed a face they might be scared and yell or cry about it. What I establish fascinating was that when they were babies they existed like a typical life however when they got older they went insane. A percentage of the monkeys were introducing a mental imbalance, gnawing them, and one of the monkeys bit off his hands. This discovering was entertaining since Harlow was supporting the surrogate moms and this wound up going terrible for him.

I wish the author might stick more to the investigations and less to her editorializing. I can’t agree with what Zola-Morgan does say “our human lives are intrinsically more valuable; monkey studies yield information that helps those lives” (153). Of course humans are more valuable than the monkeys, but still monkeys are animals and I think it’s so cruel to hurts them only because to do the experiment. If that kind of research saved the life of loved then I will be okay with that. I still feel awful with doing that type of experiment on poor animals that didn’t do nothing wrong.  This is another important finding because it just shows that psychiatrists may not have any idea about what they are doing, but no one questions them because of their authority. Of course after whom goes through big coursework and training, don’t expect someone to tell them they are wrong but from Rosenhan’s study they may be wrong too.


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