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Frantz Fanon's radical psychiatry: the making of a revolutionary

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Frantz Fanon was a psychiatrist and revolutionary. Born on the Caribbean island of Martinique, he studied in France and then moved to occupied Algeria. As a young doctor in Algeria he adopted the country's struggle against the French as his own. In 1956, he wrote, 'madness is one of the means were man has of losing his freedom ... [and] psychiatry is the medical technique that aims to enable man no longer to be a stranger in his own environment' (Fanon, 1964: 52–3). This article argues that it is impossible to appreciate Fanon's significance without understanding his psychiatry, therapeutic practice and projects of hospital reform. The article describes the development of Fanon's radical psychiatry and how it informed his exceptionally original critique of racism, colonialism and the revolutionary process. The article looks specifically at the themes of psychiatry, therapy and welfare.
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Keywords: ALIENATION; MEDICINE; PSYCHIATRY; REVOLUTION

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 01 March 2017

This article was made available online on 25 November 2016 as a Fast Track article with title: "Frantz Fanon’s radical psychiatry: the making of a revolutionary".

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