Book reviews

In his ‘Contagious Soul Sickness, Past and Present’ (1931) Dutch GP Evart van Dieren (1861-1940) fights against the rampant popularity of dancing, sun bathing, sports and nudity. Van Dieren’s book is one of the curious examples students picked to write a review about in this year’s honours programme of the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience (FPN). Together with the University Library, FPN aims to stimulate excellence by having students write a professional book review about a crazy, significant or strange work from Maastricht University’s Special Collections.

Browsing the books

In four sessions honours programme FPN co-ordinator drs. Rob de Vries and assistant professor drs. Manuela Heins from the University College Maastricht (UCM) guide their students through the writing process. In the Parlour students are able to browse selected works based on a closed stacks tour and catalogue instructions provided by the library. Some of the most interesting book reviews will be part of a Special Collections blog the library is going to start later this year. In the meantime come and read Van Dieren’s book about dancing mania and sports epidemics or his attacks on Freud, who he called a pornographer, a psychopath, a sadist and a promoter of perverse lechery. Van Dieren, an eccentric intellectual in the margins of history.

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