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Drop the Disorder! Challenging the culture of psychiatric diagnosis

Drop the Disorder! Challenging the culture of psychiatric diagnosis

Jo Watson

ISBN 9781910919460 - Pre-order now for delivery in September

Cover Price £21.99

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In October 2016 Jo Watson hosted the very first ‘A Disorder for Everyone!’ event in Birmingham, with psychologist Dr Lucy Johnstone, to explore (and explode) the culture of psychiatric diagnosis in mental health. To provide a space to continue the debate after the event, Jo also set up the now hugely popular and active Facebook group ‘Drop the Disorder!’.

Since then, they have delivered events in towns and cities across the UK, bringing together activists, survivors and professionals to debate psychiatric diagnosis. How and why does psychiatric diagnosis hold such power? What harm it can do? What are the alternatives to diagnosis, and how it can be positively challenged?

This book takes the themes, energy and passions of the AD4E events – bringing together many of the event speakers with others who have stories to tell and messages to share in the struggle to challenge diagnosis.

This is an essential book for everyone of us who looks beyond the labels.


Foreword - Paula J Caplan

Introduction - Jo Watson

Do you still need your psychiatric diagnosis? Critiques and alternatives
Lucy Johnstone

Counselling, psychotherapy, diagnosis and the medicalisation of distress
Pete Sanders

Psychiatry: a dangerous raft in a sea of despair
Sally Fox

The revolution will not be pathologised
Dolly Sen

Problems in living: an existential perspective
Emmy van Deurzen

Deceived: how Big Pharma persuades us to swallow its drugs
James Davies

The language of values; the value of language
Clare Shaw

‘Schizophrenia’ – the least scientific and most damaging of psychiatric labels
John Read and Lorenza Magliano

Resistance, rebellion, resilience and recovery
Akima Thomas

Why words can harm your mental health
Gary Sidley

Offensive pathways: the ‘personality disorder’ construct and the over-responsibilisation of incarcerated women
Robyn Timoclea

Working therapeutically with clients with a psychiatric diagnosis
Terry Lynch

Towards a trauma-informed approach with people who have experienced sexual violence
 Lisa Thompson and Becky Willetts

Disability, depression and the language of disorder
Chris Coombs

Finding my tribe: a survivor’s story
Sue Irwin

From chemical imbalance to power imbalance: a manifesto for mental health
Peter Kinderman

A tale of two tutors: challenging the narrative of diagnosis and disorder in counselling training
Jenny Taper and Jamie-Lee Tipping

Violence under the guise of care: whiteness, colonialism and psychiatric diagnoses
Guilaine Kinouani

Names matter, language matters, truth matters
Jacqui Dillon

There’s an intruder in our house! Counselling, psychotherapy and the biomedical model of emotional distress
Jo Watson

Jo Watson

Jo Watson

Jo Watson is a psychotherapist and activist. She has worked therapeutically for the last 24 years with those who have been victims of sexual abuse/violence and has campaigned on women’s survivor issues for the past three decades. She is, with Dr Lucy Johnstone, the founder and organiser of the ‘A Disorder For Everyone!’ events, she represents the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) on the steering committee for the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Prescribed Drug Dependence and is part of the ‘Mad in the UK’ team and a founding member of ‘United for Integrity in Mental Health’ (UIMH).

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