Mental Health and Social Space: Towards Inclusionary Geographies / Edition 1

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In the nineteenth century, 'the mad' were segregated in special asylum spaces; in the later twentieth century, these spaces were dismantled and patients discharged into the community. Now, in the twenty-first century, 'community care' is still in vogue, but what has happened to the people with mental health problems? Stories of neglect, ghettoization, homicide and reinstitutionalization regularly litter the pages of newspapers and academic journals. Is this the whole story? Are those with severe and enduring mental health problems still living on the edges of society?

This book illuminates the complicated reality of people living with mental health problems. It focuses on their voices, relationships and achievements through case studies tracing innovative examples of community activity that are creating versions of social tolerance, social recovery and peer- and self-help for this consistently marginalized group. People with mental health problems are active in rescripting their own social recoveries, using different community spaces to create pathways to psychological and social stability.

About the Author:
Hester Parr is Reader in Human Geography at the University of Dundee

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Hester Parr's book delivers a welcome and unusually close-up engagement with the practiced geographies of mental health." (Area, December 2010)

"This inspiring book offers a highly original account of the social spaces created and inhabited by people with mental health problems. Hester Parr paints a vivid picture, which foregrounds hopeful possibilities for empowerment and integration. It will be invaluable to anyone seeking to understand mental (ill) health in the twenty-first century."
Liz Bondi, University of Edinburgh

"Parr’s efforts to advance a 'cautious optimism”'about the lived social geographies of people with mental health problems, based on rich empirical material and thoughtful conceptual articulation, make this an essential read for anyone interested in the changing social geographies of mental health. The book also has considerable relevance for broader debates about social inclusion and active citizenship in contemporary Western societies."
Robert Wilton, McMaster University

“Parr has … redefine[ed] ‘the mental patient’, a crucial undertaking if social citizenship for people with mental illness is to become an enduring reality.” Metapsychology

“This book could appeal to psychologists who enjoy relevant work in other disciplines, who find ideas of people like Freud and Foucault interesting, and who value small case studies.” PsycCritiques

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405168922
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/28/2008
  • Series: RGS-IBG Book Series, #13
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.05 (h) x 0.72 (d)

Meet the Author

Hester Parr is Reader in Human Geography at the University of Dundee. She has worked on questions of mental health for over ten years, publishing in a range of journals, including Society and Space, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Area, Health and Place and Social and Cultural Geography.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures     vi
Series Editors' Preface     viii
Preface and Acknowledgements     ix
Geographies of Difference: Understanding Mental (Ill) Health and Social Space     1
Placing Mental Health: Community, Inclusion and Citizenship     31
Cultural Landscapes: Rural Communities and Mental Health     57
Therapeutic Natures? Urban Gardening, Citizenship and Social Inclusion     80
Artistic Spaces: The Arts and Mental Health     106
Virtual Communities: The Internet and Online Geographies of Self-Help     135
Conclusion: Innovative Geographies of Mental Health     162
References     185
Index     205
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