Dialogical compromise and symptoms

Paul H. Lysaker and John T. Lysaker

in Schizophrenia and the Fate of the Self

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print August 2008 | ISBN: 9780199215768
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191754524 | DOI:

Series: International Perspectives in Philosophy & Psychiatry

Dialogical compromise and symptoms

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At the outset of this chapter, we asked whether a dialogical account of schizophrenia could help us understand the emergence of symptoms, or whether, while preserving schizophrenia’s first-person dimensions, it led to another dualistic dead end. In reply, we have suggested that several characteristic symptoms (complex verbal hallucinations, systematized delusions, blunted affect, lack of volition, and poor insight) might exacerbate and be exacerbated by dialogical compromises. Our claim then is that while symptoms and self-experience may be distinct in schizophrenia, they may also mutually affect one another via the thread of dialogical disturbance. Symptoms may disrupt dialogue, which disrupts self-experience, and/or a disruption in dialogue may both compromise sense of self and exacerbate symptoms, all leading to potentially grave psychosocial trajectories. If this is the case, then addressing schizophrenia with resources provided by dialogical theory enables us to see how one’s experiences of the illness are part and parcel of its course and development, even if one believes, as we do, that neurological processes are also integral to the onset and course of the disease.

Chapter.  7423 words. 

Subjects: Psychiatry

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