Bedlam Bethlem Royal Hospital, aka Bedlam


Read the account of Bedlam found in the following resource, and then answer the questions below.

Henry Mackenzie, The Man of Feeling, Chapter XX

  1. How does this account of a Bedlam visit differ from the visit made in “The London Spy”?
  2. Judging from the conductor, what conclusions can you make about the quality of care the residents at Bedlam receive?
  3. What is significant about the truth behind the notion that “the passions of men are temporary madhouses”?
  4. What is you impression of the story of the young lady (and her tearful connection with Harley)?
  5. To what extent do you think society is to blame for the decline of the residents and the chaos of Bedlam?
  6. What else did you find surprising, insightful, or tragic about Mackenzie’s account of Bedlam?
  7. If this was the 18th century and you had the chance to visit Bedlam, would you? Why or why not?

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