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Wk. 3 - Readings + Notes.docx

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Disability Studies
DST 500
Jijian Voronka

Wk. 3 – Representations of madness in society Jan. 28, 2013 Notes from readings Birnbaum article: 1. Birnbaum felt that patients were being treated poorly in the criminal justice system because of sanism. How are we supposed to take mental patients seriously in court if we know they are mentally disordered and, by definition, probably incapable of representing reality properly? - Sanism – prejudice against the mentally ill, rejection phenomenon o Irrational thinking, feeling and behavior patterns of response by an individual or by society to the irrational, and rational behaviour of a mentally ill individual Yellow Bird article: 1. Pemina Yellow Bird says there were no words for mental illness in Indigenous languages. Does this mean that a) there was no mental illness in Indigenous societies, b) that there was mental illness but it wasn’t properly diagnosed, c) that there was mental illness but social supports prevented it from becoming a problem, or d) the concept was unnecessary for thousands of years regardless of our Western attachment to it? Is there another interpretation? - Story is about the Hiawatha Insane Asylum for Indians of Canton in South Dakota, which was created in 1899 by the US Congress – existence ended in 1933 o First and only federally
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