By Anne Rogers, David Pilgrim
A former BMA clinical ebook of the yr award winner, this publication offers a sociological research of significant components of psychological healthiness and illness.
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Additional resources for A sociology of mental health and illness
The latter follows the Durkheimian view that external social reality impinges on human action and shapes human consciousness. The Weberian view emphasizes the opposite process – that human action intersubjectively constructs reality. Critical theory, following Freud, emphasizes the role of unconscious processes, especially repression, and is rooted in methodological individualism (clinical psychoanalysis). By contrast to all of these, critical realism attends to conscious action or agency and is critical of methodological individualism.
This is evident in the analyses put forward by Dowrick (2004) and Gask et al. (2000) when examining the personal and social circumstances of miserable patients. In response to this extensive conceptual doubt, the lack identified by medical researchers is not better medical diagnostic categories but rather a lack of an adequate theory of self. Dowrick (2009) suggests that what is required in practice is the generation of a new set of metaphors to guide practice ‘which are dynamic and temporal offering possibilities of hope, action and purpose’.
Within this shift in social science, there has developed an interest in the ways in which society has followed the trend of the fast-food chain McDonald’s in a whole range of cultural process (including sexual activity, health care ‘delivery’ and dying). This ‘McDonaldization thesis’ (Ritzer 1995; 1997) reflects a shift in society towards consumerism, which suggests that the emotions, like food, have become subject to both commercial prepackaging and increasing everyday interest to ordinary people.
A sociology of mental health and illness by Anne Rogers, David Pilgrim