Towards a History of Depression and the Neoliberal Man

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 09:45
Location: Hörsaal 6B P (Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG))
Oral Presentation
Claudio MAINO, Universite de Paris 5 (Descartes), France
After the return to democracy a WHO study revealed that the prevalence of depression among primary care patients in Chile, was the second highest in the world. This led to several epidemiological evaluations and they showed that this disease ranked second among the top 15 Disability-Adjusted Life Year (DALY) among women, accounts for over 70% of sick leaves and located Chile, between OECD countries, as the second region with the highest increase in its suicide rate, surpassed only by South Korea. This data contrasts with the unquestionable success in the implementation of the neoliberal model, where it appears that Chile has the highest GDP per capita in South America with $18,419, being registered as one of the top ten economies in the liberalized world according to the "Heritage Foundation". How is that being the material and economic development best than ever, Chileans declare themselves as less happy, commit more suicide and are more depressed? I propose here, from a comparative perspective, some notes of the social history of depression in Chile in the light of what was known as the laboratory of the neoliberal model that differs from what Kitanaka, Ehrenberg and others have exposed about Japan, Europe and the United States with regard to this disease. The relationship between pathological expressions and economic transformation of a country like Chile, can bring up a truth contrast about this crossroads in northern countries, particularly in Europe.