Next to Normal, Postmodern Madness, and Jaspersian Psychopathology

Bahee Hadaegh, Mozhgan Shirazi


A great number of analyses have already been devoted to the study of the concept of madness but none has ever used Karl Jaspers' psychopathological notion of insanity as a touchstone to examine prominent literary works. The present investigation aims to portray the manifestation of madness in Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt's Next to Normal. Applying the eclectic perspective of Karl Jaspers which bridges the gap between empirical and interpretive psychiatry, this research will examine the enigmatic nature of mental illness in postmodern era. Jaspers' book, General Psychopathology includes a tentative classification of mental disorders which will be used to look at this particular work of art from his perspective, offering a standpoint which is equally person-centered and science-based.


Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt; General Psychopathology; Karl Jaspers; Madness; Next to Normal; Psychopathology

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