S100 - Goffman - The Moral Career of Mental Patient...

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Goffman -- The Moral Career of Mental Patient Treatment process influences both a social dimension (public stigma of mental illness and negative societal treatment that results) as well as personal conceptualization of identity Self-related changes rooted in the nature of treatment Institutional approach to the study of self Career Career is used in a broadened sense to refer to any social strand of person’s course through life Two-sidedness of concept of career o One side linked to internal matters (self image, felt identity( o One side concerns official position, jural relations, style of life Concept of career allows one to move back and forth between the personal and the public , between the self and its significant society Main concern of this paper is the moral aspect of career (regular sequence of changes that career entails in a person’s self and in his framework of imagery for judging himself and others. Mental patient will be understood in one sociological sense. The psychiatric view of a person becomes significant only as this view itself alters social fate o Only when the person is put through the process of hospitalization o Include anyone who somehow gets caught up in mental hospital servicing o Person who become mental hospital patients vary widely in the kind and degree of illness o But they are confronted by some similar circumstances and respond to these in some similar ways These similarities do NOT come from mental illness, it is attributed to the power of social forces Uniform status of mental patient – social reworking can be done upon the diversity of human materials that can be brought together by society Sick behavior of mental patient is a product of the claimant’s social distance from the situation that the patient is in, NOT a product of mental illness Mental hospital wards can be communities Career of mental patient fall into 3 phases o Prepatient; inpatient; Expatient Prepatient Phase Small group of people come to hospital willingly These people found themselves losing their minds. This view of oneself would be pervasively threatening Person’s disintegrative re-eevaluation of self + pervasive circumstance of attempting to conceal Perception of losing one’s mind is based on culturally derived and socially engrained stereotypes Different cultural value leads to different rates of self referral
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For people who see himself as mentally unbalanced, entering hospital can be a relief Most people enter mental hospital unwillingly Their come to the institution in 3 classic forms o Come because they have been implored by their family or threatened with the
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This note was uploaded on 12/12/2011 for the course SOC 100 taught by Professor Robinson during the Spring '11 term at Indiana.

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S100 - Goffman - The Moral Career of Mental Patient...

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