A commonly-held model of the doctor-patient relationship casts it as a subject/object relationship: broadly the patient is a 'text', and the doctor the reader or interpreter of that text.
However, recent critical models preset notions of text and reader as complex and unstable, and the relationship of doctor and patient as similarly complicated.
Explorations of psychiatry and 'madness' by critics such as Michel Foucault present a further background of complex ideological change. In The Patient as Text, Petter Aaslestad explores selections from over a century of psychiatric notes from Gaustad Hospital, Norway against this critical background, exploring the impact of ideological and medical changes surrounding the psychiatric clinical relationship and psychiatric professionals as constructors of narratives. This book will be of interest to researchers in the medical humanities, psychiatric practitioners, and those with an interest in medical history and critical theory.