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Solidarities and tensions in mental health politics: Mad Studies and Psychopolitics

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Recent years have seen a resurgence in radical mental health politics and accompanying social movements. This article identifies two tendencies. The first, the Mad Studies tendency, indicts psychiatry as a branch of medicine and asserts a politics of identity based upon the experience of 'madness'. The second, the Psychopolitics tendency, defends the value of welfare and medicine and asserts a politics of alliance between service users and mental health workers. Using three recent texts, Mad matters (2013), Psychiatry disrupted (2014) and Madness, distress and the politics of disablement (2015), this article analyses the solidarities and tensions that exist within and between these tendencies.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Email: [email protected] 2: Email: [email protected]

Publication date: November 2016

This article was made available online on September 27, 2016 as a Fast Track article with title: "Solidarities and tensions in mental health politics: Mad Studies and Psychopolitics".

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