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Investigating the Barons: narrative and nomenclature in Munchausen syndrome
Abstract

Recounting stories of the 18th-century Baron von Münchhausen, the unauthorized appropriation of his name into literature, and Richard Asher's subsequent medical use of the name Munchausen 150 years later, this article examines the narratives that are told about and through Munchausen syndrome that create meaning within medicine. By analyzing a half-century debate over the name of the illness, this article discusses how the medical literature invests meaning in names and how names create meaning through narrative with effects on the practice of medicine.