Understanding the Politics of Mental Illness and Handicap in a Culture of Reason: The Contributions of Iris Young and Michel Foucault
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Works of philosophy, which sometimes seem so inscrutable and esoteric as to have little value when confronting the mundane realities of everyday existence, might seem to some an odd place to begin looking for answers to the challenges and struggles faced by the mentally ill and mentally handicapped. Indeed, some might ask, who could possibly be more poorly equipped to grapple with the problems of someone who has only a limited capacity for intellectual experience than some studious academic pondering the meaning of life? This work proceeds that with the assumption that the ideas that our culture has developed to describe what makes life valuable and meaningful have had a profound effect on the way we think about mental illness and handicap and the way we treat the people to whom those labels have been attached. It is a work about politics to the extent that it attempts to call assumptions and beliefs that affect the mentally ill and handicapped into question as a means of sparking public debate.If you are not a current K College student, faculty, or staff member, email firstname.lastname@example.org to request access to this SIP.