Amputated Souls explores the subject of the assault upon human rights and human freedom by psychiatrists and the clinical methods they use. The book traces the history of lobotomy and ECT from their invention in southern Europe in the 1930s, under fascist and authoritarian regimes, to the present day. The alarming growth in the use of antipsychotic drugs, which often have devastating side effects, is also surveyed.
This book combines personal accounts of the author’s encounters with psychiatrists and mental illness with a thoroughgoing history of the use of various treatments (such as lobotomy and electroconvulsive therapy) by mental health professionals. There is also a chapter dedicated to the portrayal of the psychiatric profession in fiction, autobiography and film, which aims to illustrate how psychiatry has penetrated popular culture and just how deeply its transgressions have affected those subjected to its methods.