Friday 12 January 2001

Thomas Szasz: The Myth of Mental Illness 40 Years On. Inner Circle Seminar 55 (2 December 2001)

Thomas Szasz

Thomas Szasz

The Myth of Mental Illness (1961)
40 Years On

Anthony Stadlen
Inner Circle Seminar No. 55
Sunday 2 December 2001
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Has Szasz failed? Forty years ago, he argued that ‘mental illness’ and ‘mental health’ do not exist. But, today, these concepts are more pervasive than ever. Compulsory psychiatry and the insanity defence are still with us. State regulation of psychotherapists is on its way, opposed by only a tiny minority. All this assumes without question that ‘mental health’ exists, and must be promoted, if necessary by force.
Is this because Szasz has been proved wrong? Or is it because the myth of ‘mental illness’ is indispensable, especially for ‘therapists’, as he claims? How many psychotherapists know his argument, still developing in his books and papers (now, at age eighty-one, over seven hundred)? This seminar seeks to do his argument, and the opposing one, justice.

Venue: Room F, Acland Building, Regent’s College, London NW1 4NS

Cost: Students £59, others £76, by 25 November (some bursaries)
Apply to: Anthony Stadlen, 64 Dartmouth Park Road, London NW5 1SN
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7485 3896 E-mail:

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