Mad or Bad

Mad or Bad[Download] ➵ Mad or Bad By David J. Vaughan – In a violent 19th century desperate attempts by the alienists a new wave of ‘mad doctor’ – brought the insanity plea into Victorian courts Defining psychological conditions in an attempt at acui In a violent th century desperate attempts by the alienists a new wave of ‘mad doctor’ – brought the insanity plea into Victorian courts Defining psychological conditions in an attempt at acuittal they faced ridicule obstruction – even professional ruin – as they strived for acceptance and struggled for change It left ‘mad people’ hanged for offences they could not remember and ‘bad’ people freed on Mad or PDF \ unscrupulous pleas Written in accessible language this book – unlike any before it – retells twenty five cases from the renowned to obscure including an attempt to murder a bemused ueen Victoria; the poisoner Dove and the much feared magician; the king’s former wet nurse who slaughtered six children; the worst serial killer in Britainand A Who’s Who introduces the principal players – life saving medics like Maudsley and Bucknill; intransigent lawyers like Bramwell and Parke While a convenient Glossary of ‘terms and conditions’ – ranging from ‘Insane on Arraignment’ to Her Majesty’s Pleasure ‘Ticket of Leave’ to ‘Burden of Proof’ – helps to explain the outcomes in courtInsanity Conditions presents in glossary format the diagnosed maladies put forward in court Rarely accepted often rejected by those keen on justice in its traditional formA History of Debate explains the titular subject – through graspable language and a window in time How the ones found ‘not guilty on the grounds of insanity’ were curiously handled in Victorian lawA chapter devoted to madness and women from hysteria to murder ‘monthly madness’ to crime Raising opportune uestions about the issue of gender and exposing the truths of a masculine world. A thank you goes to David J Vaughan Pen Sword History and Netgalley for sharing this copy for an unbiased opinion Mad or Bad introduces the reader to several judicial cases where the insanity plea was taken into account All cases are set in the Victorian Britain era The set up is a bit disjointed with a glossary of terms in Part One a list of important people in Part Two a list of conditions deeming insanity in Part Three along with a confusing section on insanity debates a special section on women and madness then FINALLY the case histories which read like a rough draft as if each case is waiting to be fleshed out I do not like the layout of the book There is no reason why all of those little so called chapters are needed The way it currently is it's almost like an advanced outline for a presentation of an interesting book The people can be delved into as they are introduced The women issues could be an entire chapter with its corresponding cases If the insanity conditions are to be discussed then I think it would behoove the author to also inform the reader about the M'Naghten rule That's the basis of the whole book really Without that one would have nothing I'm not sure what to suggest for the history of debate I think it's probably needed as background information but it needs to be reformatted some way and perhaps given meat This book has a ton of potential It needs work before it's published I'm interested in reading the final draft Mad or Bad – A Fantastic Social HistoryDavid J Vaughan has researched and written a fantastic social history on crime and insanity in Victorian Britain something that in the Victorian period captured the imagination of the public at that time Like today in the new newspapers it was the exceptional crime stories that made the headlines and this book looks at a few of those cases and looks deeperWhile I might argue that the 19th century was no violent than previous ones this was the period when newspapers were widely read than ever before and crimes were widely known than before Vaughan examines those cases where a new plea that of insanity was brought before the courtsThis new plea of insanity was an attempt to define psychological conditions of the accused in the hope that they may be acuitted While looking back at this time with a new set of eyes where we can see some of those deemed mad were hung and some of those who were bad were freed but who said justice was easy or simple?Mad or Bad is a book that has been written in an easy accessible language where various terms are explained for the reader so they are not left attempting to understand what happened at the time Vaughan has used a number of case studies explaining the cases in an easy and open way he has studied the documentation from the trials and brings us the information the reader reuiresThis is an excellent book for all those interested in social history and especially the effects of crime and how punishment was dealt with during the Victorian period This is an intriguing book that brings to life a new line in a defendant’s armoury for their defence while uestioning how the British Justice System operated at the timeThis is an excellent book well worth reading for all those interested in the Victorian period and how crime was dealt with at the time I received a copy of this title from the publisher via Netgalley25 starsTen Second SynopsisA foray into the vagaries of the insanity plea in Victorian Britain and the criminals who used it for good or ill Having previously read two tomes about crime in Victorian Britain The Secret Poisoner by Stratmann and The Wicked Boy by Summerscale and having digested the above blurb thoroughly enough I expected that Mad or Bad would be a similarly accessible foray into the vagaries of the insanity plea in capital crimes with case studies that illuminate the atmosphere of the time and give an insight into the human elements of each case Mad or Bad is a lot drier than thatAlthough the case studies aim for an accessible tone the complexities of the laws surrounding the insanity plea and the brevity of description of each case meant that by the end of the book I just felt confused and ready to put the whole topic to bed It seemed to me that in trying to highlight the seemingly random nature and chaotic legal background of the insanity plea the author has been drawn into the chaos resulting in a collection of case studies that seem disconnected and lacking in context Having said that there are some extremely interesting points raised about the use of the insanity plea particularly with regards to women committing crimes I was hoping for a narrative tone to the case studies rather than dry information but regardless there are certainly some studies that boggle the mind in terms of evidence that was acceptable at the time and evidence that was overlooked or counted as irrelevant to the proceedingsThe biggest problem I had with this book was in its organisation and format Bear in mind that I was reading an uncorrected proof and certain of my criticisms may have been ironed out before publication or in subseuent editions but I would have preferred to have seen the case studies grouped under relevant headings rather than placed one after the other As a couple of the case studies reference previous or subseuent studies mentioned it would have been helpful to have a mental framework in the form of similar studies collected together on which to hang pun unintended the information I suspect I would have got out of this book had I been able to at a glance look over and compare all the cases in which the prisoners received a reprieve for instance As ever pictures would also have been helpfulOn the whole if you are looking for a book about crime in Victorian Britain I would probably plump for either the Stratmann or Summerscale tomes that I mentioned at the beginning of this post before going to this one but if you are specifically looking for some background to the treatment of the insane you should find what you're looking for here even if it takes a little while to find it ARC from NetgalleyThis book has interesting subject matter but lacks meat It delves into the period of crime and insanity in Victorian Britain when there was a battle to understand mental illness and crime The book uses case studies to show an unfair system and institutional misogyny influenced justice at the time But most of this book reads like lists and Wikipedia entries I suppose it's a good 101 crash course but I wanted It is probably a foreboding start to a book when the 1st listed chapter is simply a glossary and a list of the important people involved with insanity pleas in Victorian times I will admit to having read an uncorrected proof from NetGalley so I am hopeful that either the editors will have made the grouping of these cases easier to read or some method of categorization has made sense out of the seemingly random flow of the book The second chapter is not much better in layout as it is another list of the different “insanities” that people pleaded It seems that instead of working these bits into a narrative format or a version with footnotes Author David J Vaughan has simply placed a series of lists for the readers to push through until they get to part of the book they can relate to which should be the fifth part of the book the cases themselves As evidence by the sheer amount of procedural shows on the air and with 456 episodes of “Law and Order” alone people love a good mystery and court drama The introduction of the insanity plea is an almost guaranteed way to create a media circus in the modern world Because it is a mental break instead of a clear visible physical effect it has always been subject to stricter uestioning than simply bad people The whole point of a title like “Mad or Bad” is to have the audience ask the uestion was there something actually wrong with these people or were they simply bad people? I'm not sure that I was able to get a solid answer to this as the mess that these court cases could be seems to have creeped into the book itself Though footnotes are used later on in the case files the constant flipping back and forth between sections to identify people and topics eventually proved annoying than anything Hopefully in the future eBook version there will be a way to simply click a link to jump between pages instead of the search option I had to use This is obviously well researched and Vaughan has put a great deal of effort into it Unfortunately for me I found it to be a difficult read and not to my taste There are a number of other authors who have tackled this subject and have made it accessible to their readers If the editors and publishers are able to iron out the wrinkles in this book it has great promise but right now I wouldn’t recommend it This eBook was provided by NetGalley and Pen Sword Books for honest feedback I felt like this book was going to give me a lot than it did The description sounds great In a violent 19th century a new wave of ‘mad doctor’ – brought the insanity plea into Victorian courts Defining psychological conditions in an attempt at acuittal It left ‘mad people’ hanged for offences they could not remember and ‘bad’ people freed on unscrupulous pleas Sounds fascinating and I'd still love to read that book because unfortunately I still haven'tIt started off as a glossary of people who were going to come up later in the book judges barristers legal idea definitions etc then proceeded to become a series of short vignette's revolving around various court cases in Victorian England that formed the law surrounding criminal insanity I wouldn't have minded the brevity of the individual cases if there had been effort to actually explain how they each fit into the puzzle of these fascinating laws It felt like the authoreditors had made a decision that was and they needed a ton of court cases stuffed into the book with little to no explanation on why they were relevant My confusion wasn't helped by the constant mentions of people who had been listed in the glossary that I was apparently supposed to memorize before reading the rest of the book Constantly having to refer back to those lists was irritating and I eventually stopped altogether especially with how annoying that is to do with an ereader I would have much preferred if they had chosen a few specific cases and focused on really explaining those and the politicalsocial ramifications behind them In the end I just didn't feel like I got much out of this book beyond a whirl wind tour of a bunch of cases that just blended together by the end I wish it had been a in depth look at the legal ramifications and politics behind these cases but it ended up being uite surface level without much depth at all Copy courtesy of Pen Sword via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review This book was reviewed for the San Francisco Book ReviewVaughn’s Mad or Bad looks at the rise of the insanity plea in regards to crime thanks to efforts of the alienists precursor to psychologists specifically in regards to Victorian Britain There are five parts discussing notables of the time the ualifications of 'insanity’ important terms a brief look at insanity in regards to women and lastly a series of case studies There is a sheaf of pictures round abouts the middle of the book with photos and sketches pertaining to the casesPart Five Case Studies is the longest and looks at twenty five cases both men and women young and old alike detailing their crimes whether they were ultimately judged insane and the final verdict While many of these disorders most especially those conditions believed uniue to the fairer sex seem ludicrous by today's standards nevertheless many of these cases shaped how we think of criminal insanity today It was and still is an evolving process As a person interested in both history and criminalistics I found this book uite fascinating Most of the cases dealt with murder most foul Some such as Edwin Bates who attempted extortion on Prince Albert bordered on the truly absurd Many would likely have different verdicts today I think for one of the case of Mary Brixey who murdered her employer's infant son The cases within are laid out to the point with no sensationalising of the facts They all have uotes pulled from newspapers and court records of the time Despite the relative brevity many of the cases are still uite chilling It always is in cases where people think they've done nothing wrong in killing another📚📚📚📚 Crime and Insanity in Victorian Britain In the 1800’s there was a lot of debate and controversy surrounding the use of an insanity plea in criminal cases In this books the author starts by presenting and overview of the points of controversy and introduces the reader to the major players in the medical and legal communities during this time The bulk of the book is case studies of individuals whose crimes brought into play the issue of insanity Finally the author includes an overview of the various changes in the law and their impact on the criminal cases of those using the insanity plea I found the stories in this books fascinating The thinking within the legal and medical communities during this time period was going through a lot of changes and the two sides often clashed in trying to achieve their goals Public pressure also seemed to play a significant role in the outcome of some of the cases presented In some cases the outcome seems obvious until the nuance of the law is applied Some attempts to improve the situation ended up only making things worse I think anyone with an interest in legal history or the history of psychology will find this book really interesting as it gives insight to how the legal system got to where it is today Oh how this book reminds me of my Criminal Law class days With terms like diminished responsibilitily automatism irresistable impulse mens rea etc they sure brings back those good old days' memoriesThis book about crimes in Victorian era depicts a Zeitgeist of an era in which when  a crime was committed was the accused mad or bad; and what should be the course of action for those deemed insane? This gave rise to the ongoing medico legal debates where the law saw the insanity plead as an easy escape from responsibility whereas the alienists medic saw it as exoneration due to madness which calls for treatment rather than punishment A so so read as it is uite dry and monotonous It reads like a textbook;  there are glossary of terms citations from cases and some 25 case studies brief information with key points which helped shape today's insanity law The stories in this book are fascinating Thinking within the legal and medical community at that time has been through multiple changes and entangles the parties clashing in trying to reach their goals Public pressure also seems to play a significant role in the outcome of some of the cases presented In some the result seems obvious until the Law is enforced and some attempts to improve the situation have led to situation deteriorationAnyone interested in legal history or the history of psychology will find Mad or Bad Crime and Insanity in Victorian Britain really interesting because it gives an idea of how the legal system especially in the UK has been formed to this day

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  • Paperback
  • 208 pages
  • Mad or Bad
  • David J. Vaughan
  • English
  • 09 March 2016
  • 9781473864139