Adolf+W+lfli+2004 - Images in Psychiatry Adolf Wlfli,...

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1574 Am J Psychiatry 161:9, September 2004 Images in Psychiatry Adolf Wölfli, 1864–1930 A dolf Wölfli was born in Bowil, Switzerland, in 1864. Aban- doned by his alcoholic father and orphaned in his ninth year by the death of his unstable mother, he was shunted about from one rural foster family to another, often physically and emotionally abused, until at 16 he became an itinerant farm worker. Always shy and withdrawn, he was occasionally arrested for minor delin- quencies until, after his second arrest in 1895 for sexual assault on a very young girl, he was declared to be insane and was hospital- ized at the Waldau Hospital near Bern, where he remained until his death in 1930. Profoundly psychotic, often violent, he was di- agnosed as schizophrenic and was held in solitary confinement for several years. In 1904, when his acute psychosis had to some degree subsided, he began spontaneously and for the first time to draw, initially in pencil, later in colored pencils. His drawings
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This note was uploaded on 11/29/2010 for the course PSYCH SY BEH 102 taught by Professor Raymondw.novaco during the Spring '10 term at UC Irvine.

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