by Nellie Bly
At the age of 23, pioneering reporter Nellie Bly faked dementia in order to expose abuses of patients in Blackwell's Island Insane Asylum in New York City. Such investigative journalism was unusual in 1887 -- almost as rare as women reporters. Bly's subsequent articles created a sensation, exposing the rampant psychological and physical mistreatment of inmates, many of whom were not mentally ill but simply recent immigrants and other impoverished individuals without social support. Her accounts led directly to significant increases in funding and improvements in asylum management.
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Date of Publication: 31/10/2019