“Illness is the night-side of life, a more onerous citizenship. Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and in the kingdom of the sick” , with these words, Susan Sontag offers her description of the concept of “illness”. As a matter of fact, psychiatric illnesses and symptomatology have always been investigated through medical, scientific and/or literary approaches, thus showing their relevance at a social level. This paper ventures that the contemporary TV series The Alienist has fostered multifaceted and ambiguous re-interpretations of the concept of “mental disease” by re-defining the role of those people who, over the XIXth century, cured patients suffering from mental illnesses.
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