Edward J. Huth, MD, Editor Emeritus
Huth EJ. Reviews and Notes: Psychiatry: Psychiatric Dictionary. Ann Intern Med. 1996;125:944. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-125-11-199612010-00030
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1996;125(11):944.
7th edition. RJ Campbell. New York: Oxford Univ Pr; 1996. $59.95. ISBN 0-19-510259-2. Order phone 800-451-7556.
This is not a dictionary in the usual sense. Most dictionaries simply define words and phrases at their entry points. Some also explain etymologic origins and indicate pronunciation. Campbell's dictionary can more accurately be described as a one-volume terminologic encyclopedia. Some definitions hold to the brevity expected in a dictionary, but others are, in effect, short articles that include much more than simple definition. For example, the entry for “instinct, death” runs to a column and a half; that for “ion channel” occupies two and a half columns. The book's preface discusses both the advantages and disadvantages of this encyclopedic approach. The main advantage appears to me to be in enabling nonpsychiatrists to benefit from a better understanding of the contextual settings of unfamiliar concepts.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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