History of Psychopharmacology
The field of psychopharmacology may be regarded as the point of confluence of theories, lines of inquiry, and methodologies pertaining to pharmacology, psychology, and psychiatry. Other disciplines, including ethology, genetics, and anthropology, also contributed to the growth of psychopharmacology. The diversity of the roots of psychopharmacology goes a long way toward explaining the different definitions given to this term and why it means different things to different practitioners in the field. The goal of this essay is to briefly review the family tree of psychopharmacology and with it the development of the discipline.
The Origins of the Term Psychopharmacology
There is little doubt that psychopharmacology came of age in the 1950s with the ascent of behavioral pharmacology and the appearance of the first antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs. The first textbook of psychopharmacology (Wolfgang de Boor’s Pharmakopsycologie und Psychopathologie) was published in 1956....