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Newspaper Page Text
THERE IS HOPE FOR EVERY "CRAZY"' MAN OR
WOMAN THIS MAN PROVES IT
When an insane man enters the
shadows of an asylum and the door
of his cell clangs shut, is all hope
"No!" says Clifford W. Beers, and
proves it by his own experience.
Beers, a Yale graduate, was crazy
absolutely stark, raving crazy.
There can be no question about it.
For nearly three years he was an in
mate of hospitals for the insane. A
large part of that time he seemed as
hopeless as any maniac who ever
wore a straight jacket in the padded
cell of a "violent" ward. For many
months his mind was so shattered
that his mere physical life was
Now Beers is a scientist of national
repute, the author of admitted mas
terpieces of narrative, analysis and
logic, a man whose mental power
and poise compel respect a healthy,
sane, useful member of society.
Beers came strikingly into public
notice at the recent congress on
school hygiene at Buffalo, where he
appeared as secretary of the national
committee on mental hygiene an
organization which he founded and
of which he is the moving spirit.
A large part of the Improved treat
ment of insanity of late years is the
result of Beers' effort, and particu
larly of his book p'robably the most
remarkable work on insanity ever
"A Mind That Found Itself" is the
autobiography of an insane man. It
jwas written after his recovery, when
every detail of ms appaung exp&-
rience was fresh in his mind. It re
flated, for the first time in history, the
inner life of a darkened soul, telling
of the storms that swept tfirough.it
and of the Self ithat shook, and failed,.
but remained conscious through all.
' THAT is the lesson, 'in this tre
mendous story he t6Jls with such;
fidelity, and power the insane per
son is NOT a brute; his numan SELF
survives; he KNOWS what is going
on around him; he JUDGES those
who deal with him, arid "he is melted
by kindness or' enraged by injustice.
The judgment; to be sure, Is warp
ed. There were times when Beers'
own melancholia made 'all mankind
seem his enemies'and -when he had
"delusions of grandeur" that made
all things appear possible. He was
sunk in apathy or roused to incessant
speech. He committed-countless ab
surdities and even acts of violence
because at the tinle they seemed rea
sonable to him.
But all the time he knew, what'ne
was doing. And kindness,' patience,
good air and nourishing food made
him better, and brutality 'and hard
ship mad&him worse, and.he knew it.
He is devoting his life"" now to
teaching doctors and asylum pfficiate
what he learned, and helping other
patients with sick minds to -get well
by an -easier process than he did.