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Source: American Practitioner and News
Source type: journal
Document type: public address
Document title: “Emotional or Impulsive Insanity”
Author(s): Marshall, Ewing
Date of publication: 15 December 1901
Volume number: 32
Issue number: 12
Pagination: 441-45 (excerpt below includes only page 445)

Marshall, Ewing. “Emotional or Impulsive Insanity.” American Practitioner and News 15 Dec. 1901 v32n12: pp. 441-45.
Ewing Marshall (public addresses); Leon Czolgosz (execution: personal response).
Named persons
Leon Czolgosz; Charles J. Guiteau.
“Read before the Louisville Clinical Society, October 22, 1901” (p. 441).

“By Ewing Marshall, M. D.” (p. 441).


Emotional or Impulsive Insanity [excerpt]

     The medico-legal side of the subject is one that interests me considerably. We know how the medical expert has been ridden to assist in murder cases. Yet I take it that we should not from fear of ridicule or censure hesitate to lend our aid to the State to carry out its laws. I certainly believe in emotional insanity, but am staggered by the question as to the best way to meet it. I hardly think we err on the side of cruelty when we consent to the destruction of fanatics like Guiteau or Czolgosz, but does the same rule hold good where a person in a fit of frenzy, brooding over real or imaginary wrongs, takes life? Shall they be destroyed or permanently confined? But, on the other side of the case, I am convinced that where an individual of more or less mental obliquity shows homicidal tendencies, they should be at once put under control to prevent their doing harm either to themselves or others, rather than wait until they have actually taken life. Again, I think great care should be used before a person who has once shown homicidal tendencies and been confined in an asylum should be turned loose upon the community.



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