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Violent attacks on public figures by persons suffering from psychiatric disorders

Their effect on the social distance towards the mentally ill

Abstract

In connection with two attempts on the lives of prominent politicians committed by mentally ill individuals during 1990 there occurred a marked increase in social distance towards the mentally ill among the German public. Even though the level of social distance subsided again during the 2 years following the attacks, it had not yet completely returned to its initial level by the end of 1992. The negative effects of these incidents on the attitude of the general public were able to be replicated on a regional level, after yet another violent attack by a mentally ill assailant in 1993, this time on the life of a famous female athlete.

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Angermeyer, M.C., Matschinger, H. Violent attacks on public figures by persons suffering from psychiatric disorders. Eur Arch Psychiatry Clin Nuerosci 245, 159–164 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02193089

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02193089

Key words

  • Violence
  • Mentally ill
  • Social distance
  • Representative survey