Reconceive shamanism related theory of schizophrenia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In this review we try to summarize the concepts, hypotheses and facts about schizophrenia and shamanism. Because during this dispute the evolutionary approach has been cited lately we briefly discuss this point of view as well. To make a proper comparison first we discuss the main characteristic of the two concepts. After a hundred years of medical research, schizophrenia is a diagnostic term useful in clinical practice but ambiguously defined scientifically. In ethnology the term shamanism also cover a wide phenomenological spectrum, so we exclude the differences to stipulate the essence of shamanism in order to make the comparison with schizophrenia possible. Than we discuss the pros and cons data on phenomenological similarity, course and prognosis, epidemiology and available psychological items. We finally reach the same conclusion as the recent ethnological literature that in connection with shamanism schizophrenia should be avoided. However we consider the possible compromising explanations as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-13
Number of pages10
JournalPsychiatria Hungarica : A Magyar Pszichiátriai Társaság tudományos folyóirata
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2014


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this