This is a collection of photos showing the work which was brought together that made the Mad World Exhibition in 2017. You can read about the ideas by following THIS LINK. The exhibition held at its heart a space where questioning of attitudes to mental health, mental illness, madness and identity was encouraged particularly in light of the Psychiatric Survivors Movement which legitimately challenges and drives forward understandings today.
John Sawkins gained an interest in thinking through the issues of mental health when he had a break down at the age of 52. He worked full time as a lecturer and taught for thirty years. Subsequently he made up his mind that he was going to recover from the break down and returned to work full time again in teaching for nine years. Read more
This is an interview with Sonia Soans, part of the Asylum magazine collective which is a platform for democratic psychiatry. Having experience in clinical psychology and teaching in India, she has focused her study on gendered representations of addiction. Having recently finished her PhD in Manchester, she regularly contributes to critical psychiatry as she helps bring together the new editions of Asylum magazine. Read more
As part of the Mad World exhibition which examined missing voices from the story of psychiatry. The word ‘Madness’ is a rich word, and in its labyrinths are held important stories of humanity. It means a lot of different things to different people, and for me it has come to be a word which sometimes symbolises the best qualities in humans. Billy, a man who is part of ‘the old and the bold’ that keep our ambulance service running told me:
“A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free.”
From individuals interred for their homosexuality, to women who wanted divorces; from teenagers who wanted to write for a living, to malnutrition – discover the history and explore if you can logically spot madness.
Edinburgh: 29th May: Mad World Art Exhibition Opening
Come along and to an art exhibition which is to challenge the world to discover the insane. The concept of ‘madness’ has been a part of human society for arguably millennia, many places – times – and peoples have shaped how we perceive ‘mental health’. Now, in the UK and western world, the dominant perspective is one which medicalizes behaviour, and the medical world has become the overriding voice which gets to speak about what meanings are attributed to these phenomena, and what they represent. Read more
How I became involved with the Asylum magazine and what such involvement has meant for me: a journey through madness and back by Dina Poursanidou
My first encounter with the Asylum magazine occurred in the spring of 2010 – when the magazine was relaunched after a 3-year break. I was introduced to Asylum by Helen (Spandler), a friend and colleague from the University of Central Lancashire and member of the Asylum editorial collective, and I have been reading it religiously ever since. In the autumn of 2011 Helen asked me whether I would be interested in being involved in the Asylum editorial collective, stressing that ‘the collective is open to anyone who wants to help produce and develop the magazine, working in a spirit of equality’. I was pleased to be asked and I have been a member of the collective for about a year. Read more
Kirsten made short talk at the 12th of June event. She is a social historian and has been working on Oor Mad History a community history project about the history of activism by mental health service users in Lothian. Service user led and supported by NHS Lothian, we look at ways of using community history and the arts to strengthen the service user voice and movement today and in the future.