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Lecture 5

Lecture 5 Lecture - Mad History

5 Pages

Disability Studies
Course Code
DST 500
Jenna Reid

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Lecture 5: Mad History Patient  Radical (1960-1970) Conservative  Identity  Ex-Patients were the first in the movement because they were later considered to no longer be patients  Survivor of the psychiatry system  Consumer of Mental Health Services: grew out of the survivor movement and to turn the system into something that would be better for the patients by getting professionals on their side. Timeline 1: Lunatic Inmates People considered mad have been fighting oppression from at least the 1400s. Here are some examples from English speaking countries.  1430s: Margery Kempe, first English autobiographical writer (U.K.) o The experience for her was spiritual and was not heard from again until 1800s when her autobiography was found  1750s: Alexander Cruden, religious writer and protester (U.K.) o Wrote on version of bible o Protested against the madness trade: families who said they would care for the unwell of other families, but really just put them in the basement o Alienists: taken over from mad doctors and taking over psychiatry o Psychiatry attempted to become a medical help system  1840s: John Perceval, gentleman activist (Alleged Lunatics Friends‟ Society, U.K.) o Psychiatry and institutionalism officially began o Institutions became hospitals  1860s: Elizabeth Packard, activist for rights of women and inmates (Anti Insane Asylum Society, U.S.) o Was against the psychiatry system as it abused the inmates o Elizabeth Stone, activist for rights of women and inmates (U.S.)  1910s: Clifford Beers, activist against force (National Committee on Mental Hygiene, U.S.) o Activist against forced treatment o Mental Hygiene: get rid of mental illness/madness anyway possible, even through euthanize Timeline 2: Mental Patients Patient-only groups started forming in the 1940s. Here are some well-known examples from the U.S. and Canada.  Moved towards talk therapy/ life story (Freud), then biological in 1930s because they want to be known as a medical therapy (i.e. fact based) rather than just talk therapy  Big-pharma gain ground in the psychiatry field o Women were given Valium for their distress o Big hope was to move away from talk therapy  Anti-psychiatry came (R.D. Lang) o Tried to free mental patients and help them realize own strengths o Thought that those refuse their medicine were anti-psychiatry but not  Patients taking power over their own lives to help them get better service and treatment o Psychiatry locks them up and holds them against their will while using destructive treatment, making them survivors  1968: We Shall Overcome: Norway.  1970: Insane Liberation Front: Portland, Oregon  1971: Mental Patients Association, Vancouver, BC o Became a self-help movement to help with practical issues such as food and housing o Mental Patients Liberation Project, New York o Mental Patients Liberation Front, Boston  1972: National Network Against Psychiatric Assault, San Francisco o Got to ban electric shock before it got reinstated again  1974: On Our Own, Toronto, Ontario  (Don Weitz, David Reville– Reville used to teach the course) Timeline 3: Psychiatric Survivors  By the mid-1970s, ex-patients started calling themselves psychiatric survivors. They started conferencing and editing newsletters.  1973 – 1985: “Conference on Human Rights and Psychiatric Oppression” o Started at University of Detroit (sponsored by a progressive professor who suggested the name, “Rights of the mentally disabled”, which ex-patients rejected).  Made them sound like they were dysfunctional or had a problem o By 1976, this conference was run by ex-patients only. o Survivors distinguished themselves from antipsychiatry activists (who were usually academics and progressive professionals). o 1973: Madness Network News. Based in San Francisco (published by NNAPA). o By 1976 run by ex-patients only.  1980 – 1988: Pheonix Rising Magazine, Toronto. See:  Psychiatric Survivors  Psychiatric Survivors consider psychiatry not so much a medical specialty as a form of eugenic control using destructive biological interventions that damage the brain (as a way of repressing behaviour), shorten life spans, and prevent reproduction through therapeutic and legal constraints.  Psychiatric survivors have survived or are trying to survive (and may fail) by raising the status of mental patients in society, protesting their treatments, and proving that people in distress can be rational, caring, and “normal” in any way.  Psychiatric survivors may be using psychiatric treatments either because they want to avoid withdrawal or they have no other way of dealing with distress for a time. They do not believe these treatments directly reduce distress but indirectly reduce sensitivity to distress.  Psychiatric survivors do not identify as “mentally ill” (“schizophrenic,” “manic depressive,” “bipolar,” etc.) except to negotiate for rights, privileges, and status.  Some psychiatric survivors use the term “survivor” to mean anyone who has been given mental health treatment because of the negative possibilities of such treatment over time. Survivor Groups in the 1970’s Judi Chamberlin‟s article notes:  All groups independently run, grassroots based.  Generall
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