What is mental health? Can we make sense of psychosis? What’s the connection between mental health and concepts including race & evolution? Explore these questions, among others, through the lens of philosophy at the 2023/4 London Lectures.
Who gets to call whom mad? And with what right? (“They called me mad, and I called them mad, and damn them, they outvoted me.”; Nathaniel Lee, 1653-1692)
The psychosis sufferer is sometimes said to ‘live in another world’ or ‘in unreality’, or to be ‘detached from reality’. Such idioms have encouraged the question: who gets to say whose world is the true one, or what counts as real? Might all this not be a power play on the part of those self-appointed policemen of the real: psychiatrists? Maybe the madman’s world is no less a world, and no less valid, than that of those who care to style themselves ‘sane’? In his presentation Richard untethers the psychiatrist from such philosophical hooks – but in the process dangles her ever more tightly on a clinical one. On the clinical hook, that is, of being a responsible authority who can’t devolve her responsibility to the textbook or diagnostic manual, to the psychologist or the neurologist.
About the speaker
Richard Gipps, DClinPsychol, PhD; Clinical Psychologist; Philosopher; Senior Research Fellow, Blackfriars Hall, University of Oxford. Richard lives and works in Oxford, UK, where he maintains a private psychotherapy practice and teaches philosophy and psychology.