xItem added to basket
xSorry, there was a problem adding the item to your basket. Please try again

Beyond Help: A consumers' guide to psychology

Beyond Help: A consumers' guide to psychology

Susan Hansen
Alec McHoul
Mark Rapley

ISBN 978 1898059 54 7 (2003)

Cover Price £18.00

Buy Now Price
£12.50

free UK shipping PCCS pays your UK postage

Australasian distributon Buy AUS, NZ, Fiji or PNG

Why do we think that there are 'psychological' problems, and that therapy or medication offers the answer? This book will tell you how it comes to be that we think we have psychological problems, and why it is that 'needing' therapy is increasingly the answer. And, if we are to produce a future where we can help ourselves, without helping the business of therapeutics, it outlines some of the ways that we might re-think our selves. The version of human experience promoted by psychology defines twenty-first century western culture. That a way of understanding ourselves unheard of 100 years ago now dominates the 'helping' professions and the common sense of everyday conversation, TV talk-shows and magazine problem pages, is remarkable. This book examines how this knowledge of ourselves is produced, packaged and marketed. We demonstrate how the psychological professions sell themselves as the authority of human nature, and on appropriate forms of 'help' for personal distress. That is, we show the methods by which psychology — as a self-conscious social, cultural and entrepreneurial project — both defines an ever-increasing range of human experience as needing its expertise, and then markets proprietary solutions to ordinary people, aspiring professionals and other disciplines.

• Trading in the self
• 'That boy needs therapy'
• Psychomercials
• Self-help etc.
• Psych dot com
• 'Pictures of Lily'
• 'Here's Johnny!'
• Beyond help?

Susan Hanson and her colleagues have assembled a densely argued critique of the role of psychology and psychotherapy in twentieth century culture. If you enjoy the writing of Michel Foucault, Nikolas Rose and Craig Newnes you will want to read this book. … It is an important and stimulating book, which raises fundamental questions about the basic nature of the therapeutic enterprise. Julia McLeod, HCPJ, July 2003

How unusual … to come across three psychologists so concerned about their discipline as to risk the odium of many of their colleagues by documenting diligently and illuminatingly the ways in which professional psychology has taken with such enthusiasm and lack of restraint … to selling its wares. … a wide-ranging and well-informed critique of psychological methodology and practice beyond merely therapy. Furthermore these authors do not stop at critique but think also about some of the things we need to do to put matters right. Written with an intelligence and depth of thought that demand careful attention, no one with a serious interest in the field will regret reading this book, even though it may make some pretty uncomfortable. David Smail, Mental Health Today, November 2003

Susan Hansen

Susan Hansen

Read more

Alec McHoul

Alec McHoul

Alec McHoul is Professor of Communication and Cultural Studies at Murdoch University. He has published in the areas of discourse analysis, cultural theory, literary studies and technology. His books include How to Analyse Talk in Institutional Settings (Continuum; edited with Mark Rapley); Popular Culture and Everyday Life (Sage; with Toby Miller); and Semiotic Investigations (Nebraska). His research projects have included a reconsideration of the meanings of the concepts of culture and representation. More information can be found on his website: www.mcc.murdock.ed.au/~mchoul/

Read more

Mark Rapley

Mark Rapley

Mark Rapley (1962 - 2012) inspired many. He was Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Doctoral Programme in Clinical Psychology at the University of East London. A graduate of the then NELP MSc in Clinical Psychology, he worked as a clinical psychologist in NHS learning disability services, and as an academic and consultant to intellectual disability services in Western Australia. His other books include Quality of Life Research: A Critical Introduction (Sage; 2003) and, with Alec McHoul, How to Analyse Talk in Institutional Settings: A casebook of methods (Continuum, 2002). Re-inventing the Feeble Mind: The social construction of intellectual disability, is published by Cambridge University Press, and most recently he co-edited De-Medicalising Misery for Palgrave Macmillan (2011).

Obituary by Craig Newnes

My friend Mark died (if people die) on Sunday 12th August 2012. The previous week we had been to Halford’s in Tottenham to exchange some wheel trims. He was weak from the cancer that was killing him and tired from medication that might have stopped a train. Close to death, he had already been hospitalised several times and had that pumped up on steroids look that belied the danger within – the worst of which, a carcinoma the size of my thumb in the centre of his brain, he had christened “Elizabeth” – as you do.

What can you say about a man who thought little of those supposedly well-educated psychologists who hadn’t read Ryle, who thought nothing of quoting in Latin as if his audience would immediately understand, who had “That which doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” (in Latin) tattooed on his back and who, even when terribly tired and ill, responded to emails from trainees that began, “I know you’re not well but could you just….?”

He was a man filled with energy, a passion for clarity of thought and (not unlike Jessica Ennis) an inspiration to many (though with little interest in running round a track for glory). He didn’t suffer fools and was perfectly capable of being awesomely angry with those who upset him; face to face he could be overwhelming. Mark was prolific – hundreds of articles, numerous chapters, several edited volumes and a couple of best-sellers thrown in for good measure. I’m his literary editor with enough work in his estate to keep me occupied for years and the terrible feeling that I won’t do him justice. He was a fantastic editor – no messing about, he just changed whatever was submitted and it was always the better for it.

Mark loved life, Shiraz, Neil Young (Tonight’s the Night in particular) and food – an accomplished cook he preferred eating out; Café Rouge in Pond Square will notice their profits already dropping. His brother, Nick, Nicola (the recently wed Mrs Rapley), John Martyn and The Who all gave him life but no-one, absolutely no-one came as deep in his heart as his daughter, Ella (or Bubble to those of us who love her and share her loss). So, Bubble, these few words are for you  …  always look on the bright side of life – it’s all we have.  13th August, 2012.

Read more