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Edited book on Heritage and Psychiatry result of CCHS symposium

News: Jun 15, 2020

The CCHS symposium “Critical Heritage Studies: Current Discourses and Global Challenges” arranged in November 2019, at the Museum of World culture, included a session named “Women writing about mental health – a cultural heritage”. The session examined how persons who have been treated in mental health institutions have written about their experiences. Their writing forms a cultural heritage that problematize not only former mental health interventions and institutions, but also current perceptions of those deemed mad.

Katrin Röder, Associate professor of British Literature and Culture at the University of Potsdam and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, participated in the symposium.


Photo: Katrin Röder presenting her paper on mental distress memoirs at the CCHS symposium 2019. Photo by: Jenny Högström Berntson

Röder will now, together with Cornelia Wächter, Assistant Professor of British Cultural Studies at the Ruhr University Bochum, edit the volume The Cultural Heritage of Psychiatry and its Literary Transformations. It will be part of a new book series named Narratives and Mental Health, published by Brill Academic Publishers and edited by Elisabeth Punzi (CCHS, University of Gothenburg), Cornelia Wächter, Christoph Singer and Jarmila Mildorf (both at Paderborn University).

Call for papers to the volume The Cultural Heritage of Psychiatry and its Literary Transformations: Middle Ages to the Present
A call for papers is now open for the volume The Cultural Heritage of Psychiatry and its Literary Transformations: Middle Ages to the Present (working title). The volume explores the history of English, American and Anglophone literary representations of mental distress and its medical investigation and treatment as significant parts of the cultural heritage of psychiatry since the Middle Ages.

In line with Aleida Assmann’s approach, the volume perceives cultural heritage as ‘that part of the material and immaterial cultural memory that has been selected and destined for active transfer and circulation’. The volume approaches the cultural heritage of psychiatry as a complicated gift that connects the past to the present and the future. Like all forms of cultural heritage and functional memory, the cultural heritage of psychiatry calls for a responsible use of its components, for their preservation and protection against damage and suppression as well as for perpetual transformation, renewal and change.

Abstract deadline (500-600 words) 1 September 2020.
The full CfP: Essay Collection for the Book Series Narratives and Mental Health

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Page Manager: Jenny Högström Berntson|Last update: 2/26/2018
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