Mental Illness: Making Myths or Genuine Disorders?

in Refusing Care

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2002 | ISBN: 9780226733975
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226733999 | DOI:
Mental Illness: Making Myths or Genuine Disorders?

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Medical and Healthcare Law


Show Summary Details


When the biological view of mental illness is clearly in the ascendancy, scholars continue to respond to Szasz, some defending and some critiquing his work, and some using his ideas as a launching point for a discussion of the controversies surrounding mental illness. This chapter addresses many of the normative issues involving the mentally ill that Szasz addresses—for example, when one should commit and when one should force treatment. It shows the conceptual issue of whether the predicate for such state action—the person's mental illness—is a concept that makes sense and can withstand hard scrutiny. One could concede that illnesses should be physiologically based but assert that there are reasons to think that mental illnesses are so as well. This chapterpresents five vignettes to illustrate some of these problems—vignettes that occur in one of the leading mental health law texts. This chapter examines some of the factors that may be invoked in the attempt to distinguish mental illness from unconventionality.

Keywords: mental illness; unconventionality; Szasz; health law; force treatment

Chapter.  9883 words. 

Subjects: Medical and Healthcare Law

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.