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

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Through a series of case studies this book brings to the fore the voices, lives, and capacities of people with mental health problems as well as the difficulties they face. It effectively demonstrates the ways people with mental health problems are active in re-scripting versions of social recovery through their use of very different community spaces.

  • Offers a 'hopeful epistemology' not typically found in mental health-related research
  • Interrogates neo-liberal dogma that defines people with mental health problems as active social citizens wholly responsible for their own recoveries and acceptance
  • Brings to the fore the voices of, lives, capacities and difficulties facing people with mental health problems
  • Imaginatively differentiates rural, urban, interest and technological communities, disrupting familiar and conventional accounts of social inclusion and 'the local'
  • Demonstrates how people with mental health problems are active in re-scripting their own social recoveries through their use and understanding of different social spaces
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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: 9781405168939
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/19/2008
  • Series: RGS-IBG Book Series, #12
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 228
  • Product dimensions: 9.21 (w) x 6.14 (h) x 0.56 (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.

Series editors' preface.

Preface and acknowledgements.

1 Geographies of difference: understanding mental (ill) health and social space.

2 Placing mental health: community, inclusion and citizenship.

3 Cultural landscapes: rural communities and mental health.

4 Therapeutic natures' urban gardening, citizenship and social inclusion.

5 Artistic spaces: the arts and mental health.

6 Virtual communities: the Internet and on-line geographies of self-help.

Conclusion: innovative geographies of mental health.



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