Jefferson Journal of Psychiatry


To investigate the relationship between creativity and mental illness, a computer content analysis of a random sampling of Emily Dickinson's (ED) letters and a selected sample of ED's "anxiety" letters were compared with speech samples from female subjects with panic disorder (n = 4) and speech samples from a female control group (n = 8). Although this can only be considered a pilot study, the findings suggest that ED's word profiles are more similar to the panic disorder group than to the control group. Limitations of this study (i.e., small sample sizes) and suggestions for future research are discussed.

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