Are You a Paranoiac? Or the Latest Nickname for Cranks
Nomenclature, Mental Illness, Degeneration
Recognising that the 'available terms of opprobrium, crank, madman, lunatic, etc., have been used so often', Henry S Williams, a 'medical superintendent of the Randall's Island Hospitals', has 'furnished us with a new word which will soon pass into the current coin of civilised intercourse. His new word is paranoia, paranoia being a modern form of insanity'. This new kind of mental illness 'bears fruit in delusions of persecution, or hallucinations, or delusions of grandeur. The paranoiac suffers from a steady degeneration of the brain through hallucinations and delusions towards the delusion of grandeur. But once paranoia sets its seal upon a victim, its sway is absolute'.
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