After the Second World War, Finnish psychiatrists felt that soldiers had readapted to civilian society very well. The reason was not that Finnish soldiers were exceptionally strong, but that war psychiatrists put the blame for long-term psychological problems on the soldiers themselves. Thus explains researcher Ville Kivimäki, who is involved in the research project “The War That Follows Peace” funded by the Academy of Finland.
Soldiers very rarely sought compensation for psychological war injuries. According to Kivimäki, this does not indicate the non-existence of the problem: “Refusing to talk about traumatic war experiences is related to a deep-seated culture of shame and very limited resources for veterans to express their traumas. War psychiatry had a profound impact on the creation of this culture. Even though the restrictive and stigmatising aspects of war psychiatry might seem repulsive, it did establish a certain type of reality, defined possibilities for the existence of soldiers and veterans, and created tension between traumatic war experiences and the culturally acceptable forms of expressing them.”
According to Kivimäki, war psychiatrists were not just quacks, but primarily emphasised that soldiers presenting with psychological problems be quickly brought back from the front lines for treatment. Disabled patients were not forcibly returned to the front lines, at least according to official directives. They were given assignments in which they could best serve their country.Psychiatrists sought to treat their patients first with rest and encouraging words.
If this was not enough, and the symptoms seemed to indicate mental weakness in the patient, shock treatment, using cardiazol, electrical current and insulin, would be administered.
In special units, patients were put to work, but they were also treated with abuse and severity. The patients, who were often thought to be faking their symptoms, were ostensibly forced to “flee back to health”.
The objective of Finnish war psychiatry was a male citizen psychologically capable of going to war. The practice of war psychiatry was based on this. The goal was to objectify ambiguous individual psychological symptoms into a medical diagnostic language and establish a psychiatric organisation and therapy to fulfil the national mandate of war psychiatry.
Kivimäki’s research is based on psychiatric articles published on the diagnosis and treatment of soldiers’ psychological injuries during the period 1930–1954.
Niko Rinta | alfa
Sibling differences: Later-borns choose less prestigious programs at university
14.11.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung
Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ
09.11.2017 | Vanderbilt University
On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.
We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...
What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...
For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.
Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...
At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.
No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...
Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.
Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...
08.01.2018 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
19.01.2018 | Materials Sciences
19.01.2018 | Health and Medicine
19.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy