Advertisement

Crazy, Mad, Insane, or Mentally Ill?

  • Lia AhonenEmail author
Chapter
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Criminology book series (BRIEFSCRIMINOL)

Abstract

This chapter discusses the fundamentals of mental illness and violence. There is a substantial difference between medical and scientifically based definitions of mental illness and violence when compared with the words and phrases commonly used in broadcast media and other non-scientific outlets. Unfortunately, the use of loosely defined terms such as crazy, mad, and mentally ill can have a substantial stigmatizing effect when used to describe perpetrators of violence, often inhibiting individuals who actually suffer from mental health problems from voluntarily seeking out help and care. Although there is some evidence to suggest that this form of stigmatization is the result of the need to identify scapegoats as a way to explain violence, social interaction theory can also provide alternative explanations of the common general fear of mentally ill. More specifically, Collins theory of social interaction rituals is used to explain how interactions can work during and after an event such as a mass shooting.

Keywords

Crazy Mentally ill Definitions Stigmatization Interaction ritual Violence Mass shooting 

References

  1. Ahonen, L. (2012). Changing behaviors or behavioral change? A study of moral development and transbehavioral processes in juvenile institutional care. (Doctoral thesis), Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden.Google Scholar
  2. Ahonen, L., Loeber, R., & Brent, D. A. (2017). The association between serious mental health problems and violence: Some common assumptions and misconceptions. Trauma Violence Abuse, 1524838017726423.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1524838017726423.
  3. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental of mental disorders (5th ed.). VA: Arlington.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Blumenthal, S., & Lavender, T. (2001). Violence and mental disorder: A critical aid to the assessment and management of risk. London, England: Jessica Kingsley.Google Scholar
  5. Bowlby, J. (1997/1969). Attachment and loss. London, UK: The Hogarth Press.Google Scholar
  6. Collins, R. (2004). Interaction ritual chains. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Collins, E. (2018). Insane: James Holmes, Clark v. Arizona, and America’s insanity defense. Journal of Law & Health, 31, 33–54.Google Scholar
  8. Fazel, S., Gulati, G., Linsell, L., Geddes, J. R., & Grann, M. (2009). Schizophrenia and violence: Systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS Med, 6(8), e1000120.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Janis, I. L. (1972). Victims of groupthink. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.Google Scholar
  10. Janis, I. L. (1982). Groupthink: Psychological studies of policy decisions and fiascos (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.Google Scholar
  11. Knoll, J. L., & Resnick, P. J. (2008). Insanity defense evaluations- Basic procedures and best practices. Psychiatric Times, 25(14). Retrieved from http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/risk-assessment/insanity-defense-evaluations-basic-procedure-and-best-practices.
  12. Kohn, R., Saxena, S., Levav, I., & Saraceno, B. (2004). The treatment gap in mental health care. Bull World Health Organ, 82(11), 858–866.  https://doi.org/10.1590/S0042-96862004001100011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Krug, E. G., Dahlberg, L. L., Mercy, J. A., Zwi, A. B., & Lozano, R. (Eds.). (2002a). World report on violence and health. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization.Google Scholar
  14. Krug, E. G., Mercy, J. A., Dahlberg, L. L., & Zwi, A. B. (2002b). The world report on violence and health. Lancet, 360(9339), 1083–1088.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(02)11133-0.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Newcomb, T. M. (1956). The prediction of interpersonal attraction. American Psychologist, 11(11), 575–586.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Piaget, J. (1929). The child’s conception of the world. London, UK: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  17. Taylor, P. J. (2008). Psychosis and violence: Stories, fears, and reality. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 53(10), 647–659.  https://doi.org/10.1177/070674370805301004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Vinkers, D. J., de Beurs, E., Barendregt, M., Rinne, T., & Hoek, H. W. (2012). Proportion of crimes attributable to mental disorders in the Netherlands population. World Psychiatry, 11(2), 134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

Personalised recommendations