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The Willowbrook Wars: Bringing the Mentally Disabled into the Community Paperback – April 7, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0202307572 ISBN-10: 0202307573

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The Willowbrook Wars: Bringing the Mentally Disabled into the Community + Disabled Rights: American Disability Policy and the Fight for Equality
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 417 pages
  • Publisher: Aldine Transaction (April 7, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0202307573
  • ISBN-13: 978-0202307572
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.5 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,288,067 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“The Rothmans deserve commendation… for taking some chances and for illustrating some of the realities that underlie contemporary public policy.”

—Edward Berkowitz, The Journal of American History

About the Author

Sheila M. Rothman is professor of public health in the Division of Sociomedical Sciences at Columbia University. Her books include Woman's Proper Place: A History of Changing Ideals and Practices, 1870 to the Present, and Living in the Shadow of Death: Tuberculosis and the Experience of Illness in American History.



David J. Rothman is Bernard Schoenberg Professor of Social Medicine, professor of history, and director of the Center for the Study of Science and Medicine at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University.  He is the author of numerous works, including The Willowbrook Wars, The Discovery of the Asylum, and The Pursuit of Perfection: The Promise and Perils of Medical Enhancement.


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Customer Reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By sirwilliam on March 23, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Willowbrook Wars is a stirring, compelling, detailed, and well written account of the tireless struggle for the rights and deinstitutionalization of the mentally handicapped. My only criticism is that at times it seemed too detailed. Otherwise, it is very interesting and well-written.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By William Cooke on December 10, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
You would think that helping those with special developmental needs is a no-brainer. Often though, it takes intuition, persistence and a passionate resolve to cut through institutional red tape and push through the social barriers that stand in the way of bringing resources to those in need.

"The Willowbrook Wars" is an extraordinary, historical account of people in the vanguard of reform. It is their story and it is compelling.

Throughout "The Willowbrook Wars," we are reminded that everyone has a right to respect and inclusion in his or her own community. This belief is as important today as it was thirty years ago. Today, costs of care are rising and fiscal resources are being diverted from social healthcare programs, so there is a natural, bureaucratic tendency to do the `cost effective' thing. But `entitlement' is not a dirty word; it's a hard-won right.

"The Willowbrook Wars" shares the struggles and joys of people with
intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families and advocates. For anyone in the field, this is a must-read.
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3 of 17 people found the following review helpful By MacDuff on February 21, 2006
Format: Paperback
Maybe some people would like to know some of the specifics of Willowbrook? If so, this book might provide some insight into the movement called deinstitutionalization.
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14 of 59 people found the following review helpful By Mobius Day on December 22, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is a horribly cliched and trite book.

Liberal activist do-good trial lawyers save the world. Mentally retarded living in their own feces, chained to the walls. Hell on earth!

Who comes in on the white horse to save the day? Why the class-action liberal trial lawyer of course!

Yeah for the liberal trial lawyers. Yeah for the crusading journalist who exposed this horror. Boo for the mean evil bureaucrats! Boo for the currupt and inept politicans!

This is an endless stories told by many liberals 60's do-gooders themselves. Ahhh, if only the world was like it was back then. If only the courts were so friendly to righting the wrongs as they were then. If only Bush wasn't in office.... Wait, I digress.

And the Rothmans are liberal do-gooders. David sits on the board of George Soros's foundation (does it get any more liberal and biased these days?!?) and once was on the Board of the ACLU. Sheila is one of the travel-loving Human Rights type (human rights activist just another phrase for someone who loves to travel to exotic places and get other people to pick up the tab). She works on projecs with phrases like the "Socially Disadvanted" and worries about "the poor" from her Ivory Tower perch at Columbia.

Look, this is a badly written, highly cliched, highly biased book.

If you want to read something good on a topic like this, at least spend your money on something well writeen:

Simple Justice by Richard Kluger

Buffalo Creek Disaster by Gerald Stern

A Civil Action by Jonathan Harr

Gideon's Trumpet by Anthony Lewis

The Other Side of the River by Alex Kotlowitz

The Lost Children of Wilder by Nina Bernstein

Just read anything but this.
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