Fabio A. Sulpizio
Università del Salento
Abstract: For Philippe Pinel, the concept of melancholy is one of the key methods for understanding not only a specific mental illness but also the new map of mental alienation. However, as Hegel shows in his work, the madness is not only a moment of growth in the history of the mind, but also a pattern of scientific intellect that builds a new science of the mind that is a science of humanity. It is the melancholy, however, with its complex and rich history, which represents the testbed of the nascent psychiatry: the epistemological crisis caused by the inquiry into the nature of melancholy started, which with Pinel, will force both medicine and philosophy to build anew the moral science, only recently born with Pinel and Esquirol. This new foundation will be possible only by meditating on the history of the conception of melancholy and its relation to the antique and modern philosophical and scientific thought.
Keywords: Pinel; Hegel; Melancholy; Madness; Psychiatry.