B. Jain Publishers (P) Ltd.
ISBN: 978-81-319-0000-0 Reviewed as a PDF, therefore no information on the printed book itself.
Reviewer: Dr. Joe Rozencwajg, NMD. Natura Medica Ltd, 44 Karina Road, New Plymouth, 4312, Taranaki, New Zealand. www.naturamedica.co.nz.
It is sometimes, no, often, difficult to understand the meaning of a rubric, especially when not being a native English speaker and not having been raised to navigate the subtilities of 19th and early 20th Century Anglo-Saxon language.
I was then thrilled to hear about a book that would be a sort of dictionary of rubrics, explaining their original meaning, therefore clarifying their potential use or misuse.
This book is hopefully the first of a series: it covers only 409 mental rubrics extracted from Kent’s repertory and the Synthesis Repertory: excellent, but we need the other ones too, like for example the famous “Orgasm of Blood” that has mystified me for many years.
Each rubric is explained in four short parts: the meaning of the rubric apparently according to the creator of said rubric; an example of what a patient would say that would lead to using that rubric; what someone else (family, friend, witness) would describe or report and what the practitioner could observe during the case taking; this being followed by a sample of important remedies, but not the list of all the remedies proved or used for this rubric, despite being extracted from a vast repertory like Synthesis.
Most of the meanings are quite clear, but often limited to one single definition. Here are a few examples of what seems to me an oversimplification or a wrong interpretation:
- Brutality: meaning great cruelty… you can behave brutally, roughly without being cruel, which is defined further down as meaning “behaviour without any moral values”
- Cursing: meaning “words of annoyance”; to me cursing is “putting a curse on somebody” or “insulting in the deepest and strongest manner”, not just being rude or impolite
- Godless! That one irritates me… as if atheism is a pathology that should be treated? What is that rubric doing in a 21st Century textbook?
- Libertinism: “living his own way”; doesn’t this term have more to do with sexual encounters? it seems to be confused here with “liberalism”
- Magnetised: it is also used by people who delight in being hypnotised or having energy therapies like Reiki
What I mean to say is that although most of the rubrics are explained in a correct albeit relatively archaic way (sometimes), they are straightforward and often too simplistic, not considering the many different ways a word or a concept can be expressed. This limits the use of the rubrics to single meanings, leading to the possibility of missing excellent rubrics and remedies.
It is called a “reverse” repertory; it is a dictionary, and explanation of the meanings of words. I was expecting a collection of rubrics referring to a clinical description; for example, the patient describes that it is important to have order and that every detail is meticulously taken care of: fastidious, trifles seem important, conscientious about trifles, etc… all those could be used for this type of behaviour but are not described or cross-referenced so that we could combine the ones most relevant into one single rubric appropriate to the patient.
It is still useful though, especially when using the electronic repertories with cross-references that sometimes lead to rubrics whose meaning is pretty obscure.
Probably my expectations were too high, because indeed, I sometimes struggle with an antiquated repertorial languag