Previewing 'Hysteria'

Question of the week: Hysteria was considered a diagnosed medical condition during which century?

Answer below in the comment section for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the April 10th KCET Cinema Series screening of "Hysteria." [Contest ends Monday, 4/9/2012, at 5PM].
After the screening stick around for the Q&A with director Tanya Wexler.


"Hysteria" is an unconventional story taking place in a very conventional time. Hugh Dancy stars as a real-life historical figure Dr. Mortimer Granville, the inventor of the prototype stimulation device. Dr.Granville is a young doctor when he lands a job at the private practice of Dr. Robert Dalrymple. Dr.Dalrymple is busy with treating women from hysteria with the intimate massage and requires help. While visiting his friend, who has an interest in electronics field, Dr.Granville comes up with an idea for an electronic tool that substitutes the manual massage.

A romantic comedy, the film is an exploration of women's emancipation and search for their place in the stiff Victorian society.


Felicity Jones as Emily Dalrymple
Maggie Gyllenhaal as Charlotte Dalrymple
Hugh Dancy as Dr. Mortimer Granville
Rupert Everett as Lord Edmund St. John-Smythe
Jonathan Pryce as Dr. Robert Dalrymple

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The 19th century!
This film looks brilliant...


During the 19th century, hysteria was a common diagnosis for women patients, made of course by physicians who were men. This was considered a legitimate medical diagnosis that explained a plethora of symptoms, sort of a 'catch all' diagnosis. Also, it was related to the psychiatric diagnosis of 'conversion hysteria' that was commonly diagnosed in women patients during the early beginnings of psychoanalysis. This film sounds like it accurately portrays what was rapidly unfolding in Western culture with regards to women's sexuality. On a separate note, Maggie Gyllenhaal will be amazing in this film!