This is a rather indigestible little book. Too much has been crammed into it. Reviewing it is like trying to summarise the digest of a digest of a digest. In its 160 pages Psychiatry: East and West takes the reader a breathless psychiatric sprint over 16 countries, three international conferences and one international seminar. It also condenses and contrasts the views of more than 200 psychiatrists of various nationalities. The limitations of such a procedure are obvious. The result is not so much a bird's eye view of world psychiatry as a series of glimpses from a sputnik with no time to give more than a bleep-bleep over each country as it races round the earth.
But as with the original sputnik, the idea behind it is of immense importance. To bring together Eastern and Western representatives of any kind in order to explore differences and similarities, to "discover consensus