Contrarian on the couch

Psychiatry’s provocative Gordon Parker explains himself in a new autobiography.

Standing outside Gordon Parker’s house in an up-market Sydney suburb, a shiver of apprehension runs through me. Parker, one of the most prominent figures in Australian psychiatry, is a man with a reputation.

Colleagues reportedly use words like “intimidating”, “self-important”, “intolerant” and “ferocious” to describe him. One journalist famously said his peers regard him with a mix of “fear,