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POSTPONED AND TO BE RESCHEDULED-DATE TBD: The History of Medicine Frederic L. Holmes Lecture: The ‘LSD Block’ and the Therapeutic Alliance: The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of Psychedelic Medicine in the U.K.

This talk will be rescheduled for Fall 2020. Date TBD.

In 1952, thirty-five year old British psychiatrist Ronald Sandison traveled to Basel, Switzerland to meet Albert Hoffman, the man responsible for synthesizing LSD for Sandoz pharmaceuticals.  It was a meeting, Sandison later recalled, that changed the direction of his professional life.  “A world of extensive research, unknown to me until then, was about to open,” he wrote. Armed with 100 ampules of the drug, he initiated LSD therapy for the first time in the UK.  Apparently, he was on to something. Over seventy psychiatrists utilized LSD treatment on some 4,500 patients in the U.K. beginning in the 1950s, believing that LSD enabled a new way of understanding the pathogenesis of schizophrenia and other mental diseases. Their practices, theories, and publications had a major impact on psychiatric theories across the globe.



  • Purdue University

    Wendy Kline, PhD Purdue University
    Dema G. Seelye Professor of History


Host Organization




Lectures and Seminars
Mar 202030Monday
Sterling Hall of Medicine, L-Wing221, The Beaumont Room, 2, L333 Cedar StreetNew Haven, CT