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Free Content The Origins of Coercion in Assertive Community Treatment: A Review of Early Publications From the Special Treatment Unit of Mendota State Hospital

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This article argues that Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is fundamentally and historically based on the uncritical, but societally well-accepted view, that medically justified coercion (punishment or unwanted treatment) is therapeutic. It documents this claim by reviewing the early professional history and the resultant publications of the inventors of ACT (originally known as Training in Community Living), consisting of psychiatrists, social workers, and psychologists who trained and worked during the 1960s through the 1980s, at Mendota State Hospital (eventually renamed Mendota Mental Health Institute) in Wisconsin.

We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth are the others here for, I don't know. (Auden, 1968)

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Florida State University, FL

Publication date: January 1, 2002


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