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Biography of Franco Basaglia


The health of the mind March 11, 1924
August 29, 1980

Who is Franco Basaglia?

Franco Basaglia, renowned psychiatrist and neurologist Valdez, was born on 11 March 1924. It is considered the founder of modern conception of mental health. For sure, the psychiatric discipline in Italy suffered him to be rivoluzionamenti still influenced by his studies. To him we owe the law 180, also known as "Babu", which transformed the old system of psychiatric hospitals in Italy, by promoting progress in the treatment of the mentally ill, in the care of her discomfort, and in respect for his person.

It is said that the best psychiatrists (like the best psychologists) are typically people with their own intellectual and moral disturbance, haunted by childhood trauma or nerve stress of adulthood, as seems to have been Freud, and many other well-known industry luminaries. At least this is what the public misconception or urban legend they imparted. In any case, Franco Basaglia was not to be.

Mezzano of three children in a rather wealthy family, Franco Basaglia, graduating at the age of 25 years, in 1949, at the University of Padua, he attended the liceo classico in his city. In 1953 he specialized in "nerve and mental Diseases at the Faculty of the neuropsychiatric clinic of Padova. That was also the lucky year of her marriage: bride Franca Ongaro, mother of his two children, with whom she had a bond not only sentimental but also intellectual. In fact his wife is co-author with him of several books on modern psychiatry. Politically liberal tendency, he played with the independent left party, whose members sat in Parliament ever since 1953: really a turning point in his life already quite serene.

He became a lecturer in psychiatry from 1958, and this was the only known, if not painful, a little more difficult in her life: among colleagues was not universally appreciated, and indeed his thesis that today we would define dictated by a mentality of "always on the side of the patient" were considered revolutionary and even absurd unashamedly by many academics. Both politically and scientifically too progressive for the scope in which it was moving, and especially for the period, decided in 1961 to leave teaching and moved with his family to Gorizia, where he had got over the mental hospital.

Real old-fashioned asylum, the psychiatric clinic of Gorizia gave him no easy life. But the tenacity with which he dedicated himself to the coveted transformation of care methods managed to take him to the Elimination of the practice of electroshock therapy on patients (electroconvulsive therapy). Also promoted a new approach between patient and hospital staff: closer and closer to human exchange and dialogue given moral support rather than merely medication and professional. From the experience in the mental hospital came the idea for one of his most famous books: "the institution denied. Report from a psychiatric hospital, "published in 1967.

After being for some years also Manager of Colorno hospital and later to Trieste, Basaglia founded a movement called Democratic Psychiatry, inspired by the current of thought of "anti-psychiatry", already widespread in Britain. In fact, the movement, which spread this trend in Italy for the first time, was born in 1973, while in the United Kingdom was from the riots of 1968 that had made its way this interpretative line revolutionary flavor than all the previous years ' psychiatric medicine.

Franco Basaglia died in his beloved city on water, Venice, on 29 August 1980 at the age of 56 years old due to a brain tumor.

His approach to the treatment of mental illness is the phenomenological-existential correctly defined, in sharp contrast to the positivistic traditional medicine. At the time weren't sure for more ideas carried out by Franco Basaglia and few other precursors of his time, but now remember him as one of the most important pioneers of modern psychiatry.


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