Magical malady? Robert Bartholomew, honorary senior lecturer in the Department of Psychological Medicine, University of Auckland
Ascribing diseases to the evil-doing of enemies is an old human habit that can be traced in a wide range of historical injustices, from the witchcraft trials to the Holocaust. One would think that in this age of science and rationality, we would have moved beyond casting unproven recriminations, at least at state level, but apparently not. Take the so-called Havana Syndrome, a mysterious condition said to be afflicting American diplomatic and military personnel abroad – it’s barely diagnosed but widely assumed to be an act of aggression. What is that symptomatic of? To discuss this, Oksana is joined by Robert Bartholomew, honorary senior lecturer in the Department of Psychological Medicine at the University of Auckland and author of ‘Havana Syndrome: Mass Psychogenic Illness and the Real Story Behind the Embassy Mystery and Mass Hysteria’.