Read e-book online A Sociology of Mental Health and Illness PDF

By Anne Rogers, David Pilgrim

A important textual content for learning the results of psychological wellbeing and fitness and disease on a society

This bestselling textbook presents a transparent evaluation of the key features of the sociology of psychological well-being and sickness. during this re-creation, the authors replace every one bankruptcy, considering fresh social technology and social psychiatric literature.

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Example text

Profit makes none of the distinctions considered or asserted by Horwitz. Moreover the criteria of ‘universal inappropriateness’ is difficult to sustain for any diagnostic category. For example ‘hearing voices’ has been associated with the diagnostic category of ‘schizophrenia’ but it would fail to fit the categorization of ‘universally inappropriate’. Not only is voice hearing evident in the general population – it is continuously distributed like most symptoms – in some cultures it provides evidence of spiritual superiority.

It also raises the question about whether mental disorder is simply, for legal and lay purposes, incomprehensible conduct. ‘Normal’ criminal acts are clearly goal directed. ‘Mentally disordered’ criminal acts are not directed towards obvious personal gain. The boundary between these is not easy to maintain though, especially when making judgments about sex offenders. The latter seek personal gratification even if this is not financial. Under different circumstance, they may or may not be diagnosed as mentally disordered.

These give examples of how the ascription of sanity or insanity requires the sort of subtle situation-specific judgments which Miller and Goffman are keen to identify. The praying person in Church, or the mobile phone user, operate in a context in which others can decode the nature of their speech behaviour. By contrast, praying in the ‘wrong place’ or speaking out loud with no mobile phone in the hand invites ascriptions of madness. Madness is thus an ordinary social judgment awaiting medical codification.

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