A provocative and shocking look at how western society is misunderstanding and mistreating mental illness.
In Britain alone, more than 20% of the adult population take a psychiatric drug in any one year. This is an increase of over 500% since 1980 and the numbers continue to grow. Yet, despite this prescription epidemic, levels of mental illness of all types have actually increased in number and severity.
Using a wealth of studies, interviews with experts, and detailed analysis, Dr James Davies argues that this is because we have fundamentally mischaracterised the problem. Rather than viewing most mental distress as an understandable reaction to wider societal problems, we have embraced a medical model which situates the problem solely within the sufferer and their brain.
Urgent and persuasive, Sedated systematically examines why this individualistic view of mental illness has been promoted by successive governments and big business - and why it is so misplaced and dangerous.
James Davies is Associate Professor of mental health and anthropology at the University of Roehampton. He is the author of the bestselling book Cracked: Why Psychiatry is Doing More Harm than Good.
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