Critique of Psychopathological Reason: The Work of G.E. Berrios

  • Filiberto FuentenebroEmail author
  • Luis M. Chiva
Part of the Theory and History in the Human and Social Sciences book series (THHSS)


In the 1980s Berrios suggested that the psychiatric intellectual framework was rooted in conceptual premises that were established more than a century ago and also that psychiatric knowledge should always be historical. This is the semiologic task of understanding the development of psychopathology. Here we analyze Berrios’s work along three stages, namely, his initial works, his semiological research, and finally his doctrinal work. Berrios’s work, with its inherent philosophical depth, challenges the current epistemic situation. Through organizing historically and conceptually, both symptoms and clinical practice, his original approach represents the first attempt to structure ideas from the perspective of totality. And, in his work, history arises with a vital and active role, becoming a powerful tool with which to conceptualize and calibrate mental symptoms.


Epistemology Psychiatry Historiography Phenomenology Descriptive psychopathology 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Medical SchoolComplutense University (UCM)MadridSpain

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