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Mad Studies Stream 2016 – Call for papers

Convened by Prof. Peter Beresford (University of Essex; Shaping Our Lives) and Dr. Brigit McWade (Lancaster University)

Since the publication of Mad Matters: A Critical Reader in Canadian Mad Studies (edited by Brenda A. LeFrançois, Robert Menzies and Geoffrey Reaume) in 2013, Mad Studies has been gaining a higher profile internationally. In 2014, we convened the first Mad Studies stream at Lancaster Disability Studies Conference which brought both established figures in the field and those who wanted to know more together. As a result of this event, an International Mad Studies Network was established and has continued to develop and accrue members ever since.

During the last two years, there have been several events exploring what Mad Studies means, what it might entail in practice in the UK, and what it might offer us in terms of critical scholarship and activism in the field of madness and disability. We hope that this stream will offer further opportunities for discussion, connection, and debate, as well as the possibility of continued collective work.

We welcome presentations on any topic. However, for example, presentations might address the following themes/issues:

  • Making/doing Mad Studies
  • Mad Studies in relation to Disability Studies
  • Mad Studies, identity politics and intersectionality
  • Madness and distress in a global age
  • The politics of diagnoses and treatments
  • Neoliberalism, austerity and welfare reform
  • Criminalisation, policing and forensic services
  • Violence, hate-crime and death
  • Social policy and legislation
  • Human rights and social justice
  • Activism, alliances, dissent
  • Mad people’s history
  • Mad media, culture, arts, and language

Traditional academic presentations should be 20 minutes long, please get in touch with Brigit (b.mcwade@lancaster.ac.uk) if you have ideas for a different kind of contribution (such as a film screening, for example). Submissions should be made through easychair and specify you wish to be considered for this stream.

This year, we are delighted to announce that we will have two Mad Studies keynote lectures, one as part of the main conference (Jijian Voronka) and the other embedded in the stream’s programme (Lucy Costa):

Keynote: Jijian Voronka: Mapping Mad Studies in movements, knowledge, and praxis. 

Jijian Voronka received her PhD in Social Justice Education at the University of Toronto (2015). Her research explores the possibilities, limits, and self/management of service user participation in mental health and homeless research and service systems. She is currently working on her book Troubling Inclusion: The politics of participation in neoliberal biopolitical interventions. She holds a SSHRC post-doctoral research fellowship at Rutgers University’s Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, and teaches at Ryerson University’s School of Disability Studies.

Keynote: Lucy Costa: Madness and the Politics of Violence

Lucy Costa works as a systemic advocate in Toronto with the Empowerment Council promoting the rights of mental health clients as well as encouraging critical analysis about service user inclusion in the broad mental health sector. She sits on a number of advisories and has been involved in disability politics for over fifteen years. As a member of the Psychiatric Disabilities against Violence Coalition (PDAC) she has helped produce a report on the violent victimisation of people with mental health issues, entitled Clearing a Path: A Psychiatric Survivor Anti-Violence Framework. She is a blog commentator for Mad in America and is co-editor of the anthology tentatively titled, Madness, Violence and Power due out Autumn 2016.

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