A Case Study Of Scizophrenia In A Beautiful Mind

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A Case Study of Schizophrenia in “A Beautiful Mind” Movies in popular culture often attempt to characterize psychological problems, such as the four time academy winning film, “A Beautiful Mind.” Russell Crowe stars as the brilliant mathematician John Nash who succumbs to the deteriorating mental disorder schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a brain disease characterized by impairments in the perception of reality, most commonly manifesting auditory or visual hallucinations, disorganized speech/thinking and paranoid delusions as in the case of John Nash. There are many causal factors that can lead to schizophrenia, including environmental and genetic factors (J.A. Dyce, personal communication, March, 2009). In terms of Axis I disorders, Schizophrenia is the fourth most common with a lifetime prevalence of 1 – 1.5%. It affects males and females equally; however it is onset later in females (25-35) than males (15-25) with many of the effected individuals being of lower socioeconomic status. This film characterizes many of the symptoms and displays treatments which are effective in alleviating schizophrenic symptoms. Using the given evidence in the film and specific criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders text revision (DSM-IV TR), this paper will provide a schizophrenic diagnosis for John Nash. The film, “A Beautiful Mind,” by Ron Howard, begins in 1947 at Princeton University, an institution with superior expectations establishing that, “to triumph, we need results.” (Howard, 2001) This leads to the introduction of John Nash, an exceptional mathematician already well known at Princeton for receiving the prestigious Carnegie Scholarship. John is in search of a truly original idea for his thesis to distinguish himself as a mathematician and develop importance in the world. He neglects to attend classes feeling that “classes dull [his]

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