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The City of Thieves: A Digest and Perversion of R. D. Laing

What follows after the prelude is a digest of the work of R. D Laing, ‘The Politics Of Experience’.  Laing made valuable contributions to critical thinking in fearless appraisals of institutions that have become sacred cows.  The untouchableness of the medical institution approaches the untouchableness of the family, and precisely because of these untouchable status major problems arise within them and from people acting out roles of them. Read more

28th June 2017: Asylum Magazine 30th Anniversary Conference Party

Please come and help us celebrate the 30th anniversary conference of ‘Asylum Magazine for Democratic Psychiatry’ in the community and promote the ideas which it has represented over the many years it has been running. Asylum magazine is 30 years old now and year after year it has been a platform for people who have had something critical to say about psychiatry.  Read more

Culture Bound Syndromes: Contextualising and Historically Locating Mental Illness by Sonia Soans

I still remember the day we went through the ICD- 10 in the clinical psychology class. Our professor, a practicing and competent clinical psychologist, talked us through the various symptoms that constituted a mental illness. Mental illnesses such as PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) schizophrenia and depression were assumed to be universal. Extensive studies have been conducted around the world documenting these illnesses. We finally got to the section on culture bound syndromes. Read more

Relationships with families, carers and friends (others?) by John Sawkins

There is always a potentially difficult relationship between service users, carers and professionals. Open dialogue seeks to address this issue through allowing every party in the relationship to have a frank interchange, based on honesty and mutual respect. Hence it is disingenuous to attempt to misrepresent the idea of showing “insight”. Read more

Podcast: Mad Studies at 2016 Lancaster Disabilities conference Introduced by Prof Peter Beresford and Dr Brigit McWade

On the 6-8 September 2016 the Lancaster Disability Studies Conference took place at the University of Lancaster.  Having got a sponsored place to attend the conference with a poster presentation, another thing which I did was audio record the conference to add to the Mad World archive as a part of the Ragged University project. Read more