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Psychiatric coercion: some sociological perspectives 

Psychiatric coercion: some sociological perspectives
Chapter:
Psychiatric coercion: some sociological perspectives
Author(s):

David Pilgrim

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198788065.003.0012
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date: 08 December 2021

The way in which mental illness is conceptualized varies significantly across cultures. This chapter will discuss how mental illness is understood in different cultural contexts, focusing on local perspectives of the need for coercive interactions with the person who is identified as ill. It will also consider how such coercion takes place. Despite local variation, many coercive practices (at least those occurring in health-care systems) will take place within the context of a legal framework. Because of this, developments in mental health laws will be described in broad terms, considering both the evolution of such legislation and its application. This chapter will focus both on health-care services and on the many coercive practices that are deemed socially legitimate that occur outside the remit of services and legal regimes. The latter may indeed be where coercive practices vary the most.

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