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The Political Science of Psychiatric Diagnosis, a Moral Defense of the DSM

University of Virginia. School of Medicine
Online; Online Video; Video
Filmed Lectures
The Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM) is perhaps the most contested document in American medicine, vital for the organization and funding of psychiatric research and mental health care, yet perennially criticized both from within and behond the mental health community. Heated debate accompanied the 2013 publication of the manual's fifth edition, DSM-5. Critics charged that the new edition masks political interests (e.g. interests of psychiatrists and pharmaceutical companies) under the guise of science at patients' expense. DSM-5 defenders championed the inclusiveness and transparency of the review process and evidence-base behind the manual's diagnostic decisions. In this Medical center hour, psychiatrist and theologian Warren Kinghorn argues for a mediating alternative: that the DSM may be best understood as neither an apolitical "encyclopedia" of psychopathology nor a political cloak for psychatric power, but rather as a working document of a living moral tradition. In this case the tradition-constituted discourse allows for appreciation of the DSM as a useful scientific document that reflects the moral assumptions and convictions of the communities that created and continue to sustain it. Co-presented with the History of the Health Sciences Lecture Series
University of Virginia. School of Medicine
Childress, Marcia Day
Kinghorn, Warren
Claude Moore Health Sciences Library
Medical Center Hour
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The speakers in this presentation have given the University of Virginia permission to make it freely accessible online for all audiences to view. To request permission to reproduce, republish, and/or repost this presentation please contact the Historical Collections and Services Department of the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library at the University of Virginia.
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