“Culture affects the way people conceptualize causes of severe mental disturbance, which may lead to a variation in the preferred intervention methods.”
- Solomon Teferra
As a western society, we are over-diagnosing and over-prescribing the children of our futures, and are chemically toxifying their most precious human traits: mental freedom. In this paper, I examine themes of identity formation, mental illness and the process of diagnosis and treatment. How does our perspective of normality impacts the way we define, diagnose and treat mental illness? Are the risks outweighing the benefits? I examine these themes globally, nationally and personally.
My thesis work reflects these themes visually. In my thesis project, a light, sound and sculptural installation and the notes taken by my past mental health doctors between the ages of 5 – 20 form the material that covers a large one person illuminated dome-like cage. In this work I examine the patient – doctor relationship and its influence on my identity.