Bethlem

from by Antiverse

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    Art by Erica Williams, printed on durable, comfy AlStyle 100% cotton shirts by Warlord Clothing. Includes free download of "Cosmic Horror" album!

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about

"Science has not yet taught us if madness is or is not the sublimity of the intelligence."
-Edgar Allen Poe

Psychiatry has come a long way, but dig back a little further and you'll find that the treatment of mental illness bears little resemblance to anything remotely resembling effective therapy. This song is named after Europe's oldest psychiatric hospital, with a long rich history of dubious treatments for the mentally ill. In the past, patients were routinely chained up in filthy conditions, thrown into icy baths, and put on display for the public to abuse and heckle - a spectacle of suffering. Such institutionalization and isolation could be found here in North America even more recently. A similar institution was the Native American boarding school, designed to help Native American children "assimilate" into the dominant culture at the expense of their own tribal identities. Many of these institutions now sit abandoned around the world, and will stand as reminders of the long forgotten souls incarcerated within.

lyrics

Into an icy bath
His screams ignored
Shackled to a bed
Left in darkness

Medieval torture
Justified
A patient's madness
Amplified

The barren courtyard
A fleeting reprieve
Experimentation
Worsens disease

Medieval torture
Justified
A patient's madness
Amplified

Unabating torture
Over centuries

They are trapped in a living purgatory
Inside this gothic prison
The long forgotten
Haunt these halls

The long forgotten
Haunt these halls
The restless souls
Eternal prisoners

Decaying structures
Monuments
To the cruelty
Of shifting “modern” opinion

credits

from Cosmic Horror, released April 8, 2014
lyrics: de Vries / music: Skildum

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