Posts

Critical & Alternative Perspectives

Critical & Alternative Perspectives

On The Web

The Campaign to Abolish the Schizophrenia Labelwww.caslcampaign.com
CASL is calling for the label of schizophrenia to be abolished on the grounds that it is outdated, unscientific, stigmatising and presents a barrier to effective and appropriate support to individuals diagnosed with the label.

Coming off Psychiatric Medicationwww.comingoff.com
Information about coming off psychiatric medication.

The Critical Psychiatry Networkwww.critpsynet.freeuk.com
The Critical Psychiatry Network provides a network to develop a critique of the contemporary psychiatric system.

The Freedom Centrewww.freedom-center.org
An American-based support and activism community for anyone experiencing mental health difficulties. Includes event lists, links and advice around medication.

The Icarus Projecthttp://theicarusproject.net
Support network started in the U.S. for people ‘navigating the space between brilliance and madness’

The International Critical Psychiatry Networkwww.criticalpsychiatry.net
Created by medical doctors as a forum (primarily for medical doctors) to discuss, critique, and publicise opinions, practices, literature, and events that support critical thinking and alternative approaches to psychiatry.

International Network Toward Alternatives and Recoveryhttp://intar.org/
Gathers prominent survivors, professionals, family members, and advocates from around the world to work together for new clinical and social practices towards emotional distress and what is often labeled as psychosis.

Peter Lehmann Publishingwww.peter-lehmann-publishing.com
Publishes excellent books available in English on alternative approaches to mental health problems.

Mad Chickswww.mad-chicks.org.uk
A new movement, which focuses on issues specific to women mental health service users, using creativity to achieve our aims and attract attention to our causes. Site contains info, creativity etc.

Mad Pride www.ctono.freeserve.co.uk
The all new website of this energetic mental health surivivors organisation. Includes details of future gigs & events, the origins of Mad Pride and their ‘Stop The Suicides’ campaign

MindFreedom Internationalwww.mindfreedom.org

MindFreedom International unites 100 grassroots groups and thousands of members to win campaigns for human rights of people diagnosed with psychiatric disabilities.

National Service User Networkwww.nsun.org.uk
Aims to create a network which will engage and support the wide diversity of mental health service users and survivors across England in order to strengthen the user voice.

No Free Lunchwww.nofreelunch-uk.org
This is the UK branch of an organisation that seeks to promote the distancing of health professionals from the influence of the pharmaceutical industry.

PCCS Bookswww.pccs-books.co.uk
Publisher of counselling and psychotherapy books and journals. Committed to reflexive, radical and critical contemporary psychology theory and practice

Soteria Networkwww.soterianetwork.org.uk
Soteria is a network of people in the UK promoting the development of drug-free and minimum medication therapeutic environments for people experiencing ‘psychosis’ or extreme states.

The Spiritual Crisis Networkwww.spiritualcrisisnetwork.org.uk
A UK based network set up to improve access to approaches that view psychosis as a spiritual crisis or spiritual emergence ideas.

Working to Recoverywww.workingtorecovery.co.uk
A site run by mental health trainers Ron Coleman and Karen Taylor emphasising recovery-orientated approaches to mental health care. Includes information about training events, useful links and an online bookshop.

World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatryhttp://wnusp.rafus.dk/
WNUSP is an international organization of users and survivors of psychiatry.

In Print

Asylum Magazinewww.asylumonline.net/subscribe.htm
Asylum magazine is a forum for free debate, open to anyone with an interest in psychiatry or mental health. We especially welcome contributions from service users or ex-users (or survivors), carers, and frontline psychiatric or mental health workers (anonymously, if you wish). The magazine is not-for-profit and run by a collective of unpaid volunteers.

Appignanesi, L. (2008) Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800 to the Present. Virago Press.

Barker, P. Campbell, P. Davidson, B. (1999). From the Ashes of Experience. Whurr Publishers.

Bentall, R. (ed.) (1990). Reconstructing Schizophrenia. Hove: Routledge.

Bentall, R. (2003). Madness Explained: Psychosis and Human Nature. London: Penguin.

Bentall, R. (2009). Doctoring The Mind: Why Psychiatric Treatments Fail. London: Penguin.

Boyle, M. (1990). Schizophrenia: A Scientific Delusion? London, Routledge.

Bracken, P. and Thomas, P. (2005). Postpsychiatry: Mental Health in a Postmodern World. Oxford: Open University Press.

Breggin, P. (1991) Toxic Psychiatry: Why Therapy, Empathy and Love Must Replace the Drugs, Electroshock and Biochemical Theories of the New Psychiatry. Flamingo; (Reissue) edition (2010)

Breggin, P. (2008). Brain Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry. New York: Springer.

Chesler, P. (1972). Women and Madness. New York: Avon.

Cohen, C. and Timimi, S. (2008). Liberatory Psychiatry: Philosophy, Politics and Mental Health. Cambridge University Press.

Coleman, R. (2004). Recovery: An Alien Concept (2nd Edition). Fife: P&P Press Ltd.

Frame, J. (2008). An Angel At My Table. Sydney: Vintage.

Foucault, M. (1965). Madness and Civilization. New York: Vintage.

Greenberg, J. (1964). I Never Promised You A Rose Garden. New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

Grof, S. (1985). Beyond the Brain: Birth, Death and Transcendence in Psychotherapy. State University of New York Press.

Grof, S. (1988). The Adventure of Self-Discovery: Dimensions of Consciousness and New Perspectives in Psychotherapy and Inner Exploration. State University of New York Press.

Hammersley, P., Langshaw, B., Bullimore, P., Dillon, J., Romme, M. and Escher, S. (2008). Schizophrenia at the tipping point. Mental Health Practice, 12(1), 14 – 19.

Hornstein, G.A. To Redeem One Person Is To Redeem The World: The Life of Frieda Fromm-Reichman. Free Press.

Hornstein, G.A. (2009). Agnes’s Jacket: A Psychologist’s Search for the Meanings of Madness. Rodale Press.

Johnson, B. (2005). Emotional Health. Trust Consent Publishing.

Johnson, B. (2005). Unsafe at Any Dose. Trust Consent Publishing.

Johnstone, L. (2000). Users and Abusers of Psychiatry. Hove: Routledge.

Joseph, J. (2003). The Gene Illusion. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Joseph, J. (2006). The Missing Gene: Psychiatry, Heredity, And the Fruitless Search for Genes. New York: Algora.

Laing, R. (1959). The Divided Self. London: Tavistock.

Laing, R. and Esterson, A. (1964). Sanity, Madness and the Family. London: Penguin.

Laing, R. (1967). The Politics of Experience. London: Penguin.

Millett, K. (1990). The Loony-bin Trip. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Moncrieff, J. (2009). The Myth of the Chemical Cure: A Critique of Psychiatric Drug Treatment. Palgrave Macmillan.

Mosher, L. et al. (2004) Soteria: Through Madness to Deliverance. Philadelphia: Xlibris.

Newnes, C. et al. (eds) (1999). This is Madness. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Newnes, C. et al. (eds) (2001). This is Madness Too. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Nightsky, O. (1999). The Bridge Between Two Worlds. A Shaman’s View of Schizophrenia and Acute Sensitivity. Keepwell (NZ) Ltd.

Rapley, M. Moncrieff, J. Dillon, J. (2011). Demedicalising Misery: Psychiatry, Psychology and the Human Condition. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. and Reynolds, J. (1996). Speaking Our Minds: An Anthology. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. (2009). Psychiatric drugs: Key Issues and Service User Perspectives. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. Bentall, R. and Mosher, L. (2004). Models of Madness: Psychological, Social and Biological Approaches to Schizophrenia. Routledge; New edition.

Smith, K. and Sweeney, M. (1997). Beyond Bedlam. Anvil Press Poetry.

Stastny, P. and Lehmann, P. (Eds). (2007). Alternatives Beyond Psychiatry. Shrewsbury (UK): Lehmann Publications.

Szasz, T. (1988). Schizophrenia: The Sacred Symbol of Psychiatry. Syracuse University Press.

Thomas, P. (1997). The Dialectics of Schizophrenia. New York: Free Association Press.

Tart, C.T. (1969). Altered States of Consciousness. HarperCollins.

Ussher, J. (1991). Women’s Madness: Misogyny or Mental Illness? University of Massachusetts Press.

Watters, E. (2010). Crazy Like Us: The Globalization of the American Psyche. Free Press: Simon & Schuster.

Whitaker. R. (2002). Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill. Cambridge, MA: Perseus.

Whitaker, R. (2010) Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America. Crown Publishing Group (NY).

The Personal is Political

Telling Stories Book CoverTelling Stories? explores the contemporary state of affairs in the understanding and treatment of psychosis. An inclusive approach to mental distress requires that in order to truly understand psychosis we must begin by listening to those who know this from the inside out; the voices and narrative of those who have been condemned as “unanalysable” and mad.

Far from being fantastical, the complex stories that are being articulated communicate painful truths and the myriad ways in which the human psyche survives overwhelming trauma. This book is the culmination of an integrated and creative alliance between those on the cutting edge, experientially, in research, diagnosis, and treatment; this multidisciplinary dialogue proposes a new relational and attachment orientated paradigm for the 21st century. In contrast to the containment model that is currently favoured, this advocates listening and talking therapies, and the healing power of a loving relationship, offering those with psychosis the possibility of more nourishing engagement with the world.

Living With Voices: An Anthology of 50 Voice Hearers Stories of Recovery

Living With Voices Book CoverA new analysis of the hearing voices experience outside the illness model resulted in accepting and making sense of voices. This study of 50 stories forms the evidence for this successful new approach to working with voice hearers.

At the heart of this book are the stories of fifty people who have recovered from the distress of hearing voices. They have overcome the disabling social and psychiatric attitudes towards voice hearing and have also fought with themselves to accept and make sense of the voices. They have changed their relationship with their voices in order to reclaim their lives.

All the people in this book describe their recovery; how they now accept their voices as personal, and how they have learnt to cope with them and have changed their relationship with them. They have discovered that their voices are not a sign of madness but a reaction to problems in their lives that they couldn’t cope with, and they have found that there is a relationship between the voices and their life history, that the voices talk about problems that they haven’t dealt with – and that they therefore make sense.

Schizophrenia at the Tipping Point

It is time for change, argue Paul Hammersley and colleagues. Now is the moment to abandon conceptions of schizophrenia that are outdated and which do nothing to help people burdened with a diagnosis.

Bad Science

The CASL campaign is driven by two central factors:

  • The concept of schizophrenia is unscientific and has outlived any usefulness it may once have claimed.
  • The label schizophrenia is extremely damaging to those to whom it is applied.

 The idea that schizophrenia can be viewed as a specific, genetically determined, biologically driven brain disease has been based on bad science and social control since its inception. English scientists have proven that the concept of schizophrenia is invalid. Indeed, few scientists represent themselves as happy with the illness model, and increasingly it is only seen to serve the interests of the pharmaceutical industry’s voracious appetite for control of human experience. It is also harmful because the diagnostic process makes it impossible to make sense of the problems that lie at the root of people’s distress. The scandal is that in the 21st century intelligent human beings are deemed to be ‘lacking insight’ for questioning a label proven to lack scientific validity.

CASL – The Campaign to Abolish the Schizophrenia Label

There have been many historical examples of medical diagnoses that took on different meanings in everyday life to the originally intended  scientific meaning, and as a result were abandoned by psychiatry, psychology and society. The words cretin, moron and idiot were all once formal medical diagnoses.

We believe that the diagnosis of schizophrenia has followed such a pathway and needs to be abolished as a matter of urgency. To describe someone as schizophrenic tells us nothing about them as an individual, and nothing about possible pathways to recovery. Rather, to diagnose someone as schizophrenic carries implications of split personality, hopelessness and in particular unpredictability and dangerousness. Schizophrenia is not a diagnosis it is a term of abuse.

Pages

Critical & Alternative Perspectives

Critical & Alternative Perspectives

On The Web

The Campaign to Abolish the Schizophrenia Labelwww.caslcampaign.com
CASL is calling for the label of schizophrenia to be abolished on the grounds that it is outdated, unscientific, stigmatising and presents a barrier to effective and appropriate support to individuals diagnosed with the label.

Coming off Psychiatric Medicationwww.comingoff.com
Information about coming off psychiatric medication.

The Critical Psychiatry Networkwww.critpsynet.freeuk.com
The Critical Psychiatry Network provides a network to develop a critique of the contemporary psychiatric system.

The Freedom Centrewww.freedom-center.org
An American-based support and activism community for anyone experiencing mental health difficulties. Includes event lists, links and advice around medication.

The Icarus Projecthttp://theicarusproject.net
Support network started in the U.S. for people ‘navigating the space between brilliance and madness’

The International Critical Psychiatry Networkwww.criticalpsychiatry.net
Created by medical doctors as a forum (primarily for medical doctors) to discuss, critique, and publicise opinions, practices, literature, and events that support critical thinking and alternative approaches to psychiatry.

International Network Toward Alternatives and Recoveryhttp://intar.org/
Gathers prominent survivors, professionals, family members, and advocates from around the world to work together for new clinical and social practices towards emotional distress and what is often labeled as psychosis.

Peter Lehmann Publishingwww.peter-lehmann-publishing.com
Publishes excellent books available in English on alternative approaches to mental health problems.

Mad Chickswww.mad-chicks.org.uk
A new movement, which focuses on issues specific to women mental health service users, using creativity to achieve our aims and attract attention to our causes. Site contains info, creativity etc.

Mad Pride www.ctono.freeserve.co.uk
The all new website of this energetic mental health surivivors organisation. Includes details of future gigs & events, the origins of Mad Pride and their ‘Stop The Suicides’ campaign

MindFreedom Internationalwww.mindfreedom.org

MindFreedom International unites 100 grassroots groups and thousands of members to win campaigns for human rights of people diagnosed with psychiatric disabilities.

National Service User Networkwww.nsun.org.uk
Aims to create a network which will engage and support the wide diversity of mental health service users and survivors across England in order to strengthen the user voice.

No Free Lunchwww.nofreelunch-uk.org
This is the UK branch of an organisation that seeks to promote the distancing of health professionals from the influence of the pharmaceutical industry.

PCCS Bookswww.pccs-books.co.uk
Publisher of counselling and psychotherapy books and journals. Committed to reflexive, radical and critical contemporary psychology theory and practice

Soteria Networkwww.soterianetwork.org.uk
Soteria is a network of people in the UK promoting the development of drug-free and minimum medication therapeutic environments for people experiencing ‘psychosis’ or extreme states.

The Spiritual Crisis Networkwww.spiritualcrisisnetwork.org.uk
A UK based network set up to improve access to approaches that view psychosis as a spiritual crisis or spiritual emergence ideas.

Working to Recoverywww.workingtorecovery.co.uk
A site run by mental health trainers Ron Coleman and Karen Taylor emphasising recovery-orientated approaches to mental health care. Includes information about training events, useful links and an online bookshop.

World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatryhttp://wnusp.rafus.dk/
WNUSP is an international organization of users and survivors of psychiatry.

In Print

Asylum Magazinewww.asylumonline.net/subscribe.htm
Asylum magazine is a forum for free debate, open to anyone with an interest in psychiatry or mental health. We especially welcome contributions from service users or ex-users (or survivors), carers, and frontline psychiatric or mental health workers (anonymously, if you wish). The magazine is not-for-profit and run by a collective of unpaid volunteers.

Appignanesi, L. (2008) Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Women and the Mind Doctors from 1800 to the Present. Virago Press.

Barker, P. Campbell, P. Davidson, B. (1999). From the Ashes of Experience. Whurr Publishers.

Bentall, R. (ed.) (1990). Reconstructing Schizophrenia. Hove: Routledge.

Bentall, R. (2003). Madness Explained: Psychosis and Human Nature. London: Penguin.

Bentall, R. (2009). Doctoring The Mind: Why Psychiatric Treatments Fail. London: Penguin.

Boyle, M. (1990). Schizophrenia: A Scientific Delusion? London, Routledge.

Bracken, P. and Thomas, P. (2005). Postpsychiatry: Mental Health in a Postmodern World. Oxford: Open University Press.

Breggin, P. (1991) Toxic Psychiatry: Why Therapy, Empathy and Love Must Replace the Drugs, Electroshock and Biochemical Theories of the New Psychiatry. Flamingo; (Reissue) edition (2010)

Breggin, P. (2008). Brain Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry. New York: Springer.

Chesler, P. (1972). Women and Madness. New York: Avon.

Cohen, C. and Timimi, S. (2008). Liberatory Psychiatry: Philosophy, Politics and Mental Health. Cambridge University Press.

Coleman, R. (2004). Recovery: An Alien Concept (2nd Edition). Fife: P&P Press Ltd.

Frame, J. (2008). An Angel At My Table. Sydney: Vintage.

Foucault, M. (1965). Madness and Civilization. New York: Vintage.

Greenberg, J. (1964). I Never Promised You A Rose Garden. New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

Grof, S. (1985). Beyond the Brain: Birth, Death and Transcendence in Psychotherapy. State University of New York Press.

Grof, S. (1988). The Adventure of Self-Discovery: Dimensions of Consciousness and New Perspectives in Psychotherapy and Inner Exploration. State University of New York Press.

Hammersley, P., Langshaw, B., Bullimore, P., Dillon, J., Romme, M. and Escher, S. (2008). Schizophrenia at the tipping point. Mental Health Practice, 12(1), 14 – 19.

Hornstein, G.A. To Redeem One Person Is To Redeem The World: The Life of Frieda Fromm-Reichman. Free Press.

Hornstein, G.A. (2009). Agnes’s Jacket: A Psychologist’s Search for the Meanings of Madness. Rodale Press.

Johnson, B. (2005). Emotional Health. Trust Consent Publishing.

Johnson, B. (2005). Unsafe at Any Dose. Trust Consent Publishing.

Johnstone, L. (2000). Users and Abusers of Psychiatry. Hove: Routledge.

Joseph, J. (2003). The Gene Illusion. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Joseph, J. (2006). The Missing Gene: Psychiatry, Heredity, And the Fruitless Search for Genes. New York: Algora.

Laing, R. (1959). The Divided Self. London: Tavistock.

Laing, R. and Esterson, A. (1964). Sanity, Madness and the Family. London: Penguin.

Laing, R. (1967). The Politics of Experience. London: Penguin.

Millett, K. (1990). The Loony-bin Trip. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Moncrieff, J. (2009). The Myth of the Chemical Cure: A Critique of Psychiatric Drug Treatment. Palgrave Macmillan.

Mosher, L. et al. (2004) Soteria: Through Madness to Deliverance. Philadelphia: Xlibris.

Newnes, C. et al. (eds) (1999). This is Madness. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Newnes, C. et al. (eds) (2001). This is Madness Too. Ross-on-Wye: PCCS Books.

Nightsky, O. (1999). The Bridge Between Two Worlds. A Shaman’s View of Schizophrenia and Acute Sensitivity. Keepwell (NZ) Ltd.

Rapley, M. Moncrieff, J. Dillon, J. (2011). Demedicalising Misery: Psychiatry, Psychology and the Human Condition. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. and Reynolds, J. (1996). Speaking Our Minds: An Anthology. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. (2009). Psychiatric drugs: Key Issues and Service User Perspectives. Palgrave Macmillan.

Read, J. Bentall, R. and Mosher, L. (2004). Models of Madness: Psychological, Social and Biological Approaches to Schizophrenia. Routledge; New edition.

Smith, K. and Sweeney, M. (1997). Beyond Bedlam. Anvil Press Poetry.

Stastny, P. and Lehmann, P. (Eds). (2007). Alternatives Beyond Psychiatry. Shrewsbury (UK): Lehmann Publications.

Szasz, T. (1988). Schizophrenia: The Sacred Symbol of Psychiatry. Syracuse University Press.

Thomas, P. (1997). The Dialectics of Schizophrenia. New York: Free Association Press.

Tart, C.T. (1969). Altered States of Consciousness. HarperCollins.

Ussher, J. (1991). Women’s Madness: Misogyny or Mental Illness? University of Massachusetts Press.

Watters, E. (2010). Crazy Like Us: The Globalization of the American Psyche. Free Press: Simon & Schuster.

Whitaker. R. (2002). Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill. Cambridge, MA: Perseus.

Whitaker, R. (2010) Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America. Crown Publishing Group (NY).

The Personal is Political

Telling Stories Book CoverTelling Stories? explores the contemporary state of affairs in the understanding and treatment of psychosis. An inclusive approach to mental distress requires that in order to truly understand psychosis we must begin by listening to those who know this from the inside out; the voices and narrative of those who have been condemned as “unanalysable” and mad.

Far from being fantastical, the complex stories that are being articulated communicate painful truths and the myriad ways in which the human psyche survives overwhelming trauma. This book is the culmination of an integrated and creative alliance between those on the cutting edge, experientially, in research, diagnosis, and treatment; this multidisciplinary dialogue proposes a new relational and attachment orientated paradigm for the 21st century. In contrast to the containment model that is currently favoured, this advocates listening and talking therapies, and the healing power of a loving relationship, offering those with psychosis the possibility of more nourishing engagement with the world.

Living With Voices: An Anthology of 50 Voice Hearers Stories of Recovery

Living With Voices Book CoverA new analysis of the hearing voices experience outside the illness model resulted in accepting and making sense of voices. This study of 50 stories forms the evidence for this successful new approach to working with voice hearers.

At the heart of this book are the stories of fifty people who have recovered from the distress of hearing voices. They have overcome the disabling social and psychiatric attitudes towards voice hearing and have also fought with themselves to accept and make sense of the voices. They have changed their relationship with their voices in order to reclaim their lives.

All the people in this book describe their recovery; how they now accept their voices as personal, and how they have learnt to cope with them and have changed their relationship with them. They have discovered that their voices are not a sign of madness but a reaction to problems in their lives that they couldn’t cope with, and they have found that there is a relationship between the voices and their life history, that the voices talk about problems that they haven’t dealt with – and that they therefore make sense.

Schizophrenia at the Tipping Point

It is time for change, argue Paul Hammersley and colleagues. Now is the moment to abandon conceptions of schizophrenia that are outdated and which do nothing to help people burdened with a diagnosis.

Bad Science

The CASL campaign is driven by two central factors:

  • The concept of schizophrenia is unscientific and has outlived any usefulness it may once have claimed.
  • The label schizophrenia is extremely damaging to those to whom it is applied.

 The idea that schizophrenia can be viewed as a specific, genetically determined, biologically driven brain disease has been based on bad science and social control since its inception. English scientists have proven that the concept of schizophrenia is invalid. Indeed, few scientists represent themselves as happy with the illness model, and increasingly it is only seen to serve the interests of the pharmaceutical industry’s voracious appetite for control of human experience. It is also harmful because the diagnostic process makes it impossible to make sense of the problems that lie at the root of people’s distress. The scandal is that in the 21st century intelligent human beings are deemed to be ‘lacking insight’ for questioning a label proven to lack scientific validity.

CASL – The Campaign to Abolish the Schizophrenia Label

There have been many historical examples of medical diagnoses that took on different meanings in everyday life to the originally intended  scientific meaning, and as a result were abandoned by psychiatry, psychology and society. The words cretin, moron and idiot were all once formal medical diagnoses.

We believe that the diagnosis of schizophrenia has followed such a pathway and needs to be abolished as a matter of urgency. To describe someone as schizophrenic tells us nothing about them as an individual, and nothing about possible pathways to recovery. Rather, to diagnose someone as schizophrenic carries implications of split personality, hopelessness and in particular unpredictability and dangerousness. Schizophrenia is not a diagnosis it is a term of abuse.