Is insanity a myth? Does it exist merely to keep psychiatrists in business? Or maybe it is just an easy way to categorize 'socially unacceptable' behavior. Contentions like these have made Dr Szasz one of psychiatry's most celebrated and controversial thinkers. In "Insanity: The Idea and Its Consequences", Szasz challenges the way both science and society define insanity; in the process, he helps us better understand this often misunderstood 'condition'. Szasz attacks the universally accepted psychiatric doctrines that blur the distinction between literal and metaphoric diseases. Instead, he presents a more fully rounded account of the insanity concept and shows how it relates to and differs from three closely allied ideas - bodily illness, social deviance and the sick role.