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Abnormal Psychology PG3560 TTh 9:30-10:45, Haley 2116. Laura Vernon, Ph.D. www.auburn.edu/~vernoll. CLASS ACTIVITY. Define Mental Illness . 1) Consider what a “mental illness” is as a concept. What are its essential features?

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abnormal psychology pg3560 tth 9 30 10 45 haley 2116

Abnormal PsychologyPG3560TTh 9:30-10:45, Haley 2116

Laura Vernon, Ph.D.

www.auburn.edu/~vernoll

class activity
CLASS ACTIVITY
  • Define Mental Illness.
  • 1) Consider what a “mental illness” is as a concept. What are its essential features?
  • 2) Make your definition useful for discriminating between those with and those without “mental illness.”
definitions dfns
Definitions (DFNs)
  • Factual statement
    • objectively true
    • e.g., Weeds are plants.
  • Value statement
    • __________________
    • e.g., Weeds are pests.
defining mental illness
Defining “Mental Illness”
  • 1. Does not exist. (Szasz)
    • “problems in living”
    • subjective value judgement
    • only objective lesions
    • Problems: some lesions not illness
    • some illnesses not lesions
slide5
2. Biological Disadvantage. (Kendall)
    • increased mortality
    • ________________
    • Problem cases: priesthood
    • military
defining illness
Defining “Illness”
  • 1. __________________
    • rare or unusual behavior
    • deviation from standard
    • Problems: some illness is common
    • some good behavior is rare
    • who sets standard
slide7
2. Personal Distress
    • suffering
    • Problems: some distressed people not ill
    • some ill people not distressed
slide8
3. Impaired Functioning
    • _____________________________________
    • Problems: some low functioning people not ill
    • some high functioning people are ill
characteristics of illness
Characteristics of Illness
  • 1. Associated with subjective distress, increased mortality, impaired functioning
  • 2. Things we want treated
    • or things doctors treat
  • 3. Attributable to an internal cause
    • not due to unemployment, poverty, etc.
slide10
4. Useful label for society
    • spurs treatment (tx) and research
    • _______________________
government as parent to mentally ill potential for abuse
Government as “Parent” to Mentally Ill- Potential for Abuse
  • Historical examples of abuse
    • Soviet Union- political opposition
    • U.S.- drapetomania
    • ______________________
      • painful tx.s
      • fostered discrimination
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