“Libertarian philosophy of freedom is characterized by two fundamental beliefs: Self-ownership is a basic right, and initiating violence is a fundamental wrong. In contrast, psychiatric practice is based on the assumptions that self-ownership—epitomized by suicide—is a medical wrong, and that initiating violence against persons called “mental patients” is a medical right. In this book, Szasz examines these assumptions, considering issues such as whether self-medication and self-determined death are exercises of rightful self-ownership or manifestations of serious mental diseases, and whether deprivation of human liberty under psychiatric auspices constitute odious detention or therapeutically justified hospitalization.”
—Law and Social Inquiry
"Thomas Szasz has created an extraordinary body of work, that continues to raise consequential challenges to the the prevailing myths of the culture of psychology."
—Tobias Wolff, PEN/Faulkner Award-winner, Stanford University
"Szasz has produced a prodigious literature of liberty--and, at age 85, he is not finished. In my view, his criticism of libertarian obliviousness to coercive psychiatry is spot-on. One hopes that Faith in Freedom will be an alarm clock for sleeping libertarians."
—Sheldon Richman, The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies
"[Faith in Freedom] is a strikingly original book, written by one of the foremost champions of psychiatric freedom."
About the Author
Thomas Szasz was professor of psychiatry emeritus at the State University of New York Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, New York and adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, Washington, DC. He was a big figure in the anti-psychitary movement, a critic of the moral and scientific foundation of psychiatry, and a critic of medicine in society in the social control aspect. His numerous works include The Age of Madness, Ideology and Insanity: Essays on the Psychiatric Dehumanization of Man, and Coercion as Cure: A Critical History of Psychiatry.