A thorough dig into psychosis literature (everything from the Schneiderian first-rank symptoms of schizophrenia, a set of symptoms recognized and used by physicians worldwide, to acts of madness in King Lear) reveals that one of the biggest challenges of understanding any type of mental illness, and psychosis in particular, is finding the ability to empathize.
The head of a rotting cow carcass lies pensively on the floor of an art museum exhibit, enclosed by a large glass casing. Despite the repulsive maggots and flies buzzing around its head, the cow fascinated Ricky Cordova (Bioengineering ‘18).
“It’s beautiful,” he said. “By making the mental leap to label something differently, [the artist] showed that something so commonplace can be a powerful symbol of the beauty of death … of the metamorphosis of materials after life leaves it.”