Schizophrenic: An American Zionist in Israel

May 30, 2017 by J-Wire
Read on for article

I was disappointed and distressed that J-Wire should publish Gideon Ben-Zvi’s otherwise excellent article under the above headline.  The use of the word Schizophrenic, both in the headline and in the text of the article, reinforces the misconception that schizophrenia is equivalent to split personality.

Schizophrenia is, in fact, a debilitating and devastating disease which sadly affects a significant portion of the population (some researchers suggest that up to 1% of the population will be affected by schizophrenia in their lifetime).  It is related to psychosis involving delusions, hallucinations, disordered thinking and disordered behaviour. As SANE Australia says, Schizophrenia is an illness that disrupts the functioning of the human mind.  It causes intense episodes of psychosis involving delusions and hallucinations, and long periods of reduced expression, motivation and functioning.  While it is treatable, schizophrenia is presently incurable.

It is a myth to say that schizophrenia is split personality or that it has anything to do with multiple personalities.  Rather, it has to do with significant distress for both sufferers and carers as well as, unfortunately, enormous stigmatism in western society.

While Ben-Zvi’s article is entertaining and illuminating, his choice of schizophrenia to describe a bifurcated situation is most unfortunate.

Yours sincerely,

Norbert Schweizer OAM

Neuroscience Research Australia – Board Member



One Response to “Schizophrenic: An American Zionist in Israel”
  1. Dianne Moses says:

    I am very pleased to see this comment on the inappropriate use of the word “schizophrenia.” It is important that public misconceptions be corrected. The throwaway use of the word “spastic” as an insult, particularly by young people, is similarly hurtful, and shows a lack of understanding of the meaning and implications of this disorder.

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.