What’s the Story?

  • Catharine ColeborneEmail author
Part of the Mental Health in Historical Perspective book series (MHHP)


The book has opened up a new conversation about madness. It has suggested that if our collective stories of madness are not made public, various official, academic and other histories of psychiatry lose their meaning—and miss the point—in the current landscape of histories of mental health. In fact, our shared histories of psychiatry and mental health are important to ongoing conversations about mental illness, treatments and preventive mental health, as well as to forms of community care. We need to consider all protagonists in the unfolding drama of mental health policy and care on a global scale.


Psychiatric consumer voices Future of madness studies Digital Online 

Suggested Readings

  1. Clements, Judi. 2015. Lock-em up attitude is inappropriate. Waikato Times. April 29.Google Scholar
  2. Coleborne, Catharine. 2018. Madness uncontained. In Containing madness: Gender and ‘psy’ in institutional contexts, eds Jennifer M. Kilty and Erin Dej, v–viii. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
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  4. McCarthy et al. 2017. Lives in the asylum record, 1864 to 1910: Utilising large data collection for histories of psychiatry and mental health in the British World. Medical History 61 (3): 358–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. O’Hagan, Mary. 2014. Madness made me: A memoir. Wellington: Open Box.Google Scholar
  6. Porter, Roy. 2002. Madness: A brief history. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
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  8. Rothman, Sheila. 1994. Living in the shadow of death: Tuberculosis and the social experience of illness in American history. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  9. Tomes, Nancy. 1990. Historical perspectives on women and mental illness. In Women, health and medicine in America: A historical handbook, ed. Rima D. Apple, 143–171. New York and London: Garland Publishing.Google Scholar
  10. Wong, Qiujing. 2015. How telling stories can bring social change. New Zealand Herald, April 27.Google Scholar

Documentaries and Digital Stories

  1. Borderless Productions. 2014. Alison: 50 years under the system. Accessed March 2019.
  2. Marbrook, Jim. 2012. Mental notes (Documentary). New Zealand. Accessed 31 July 2019.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Humanities and Social ScienceUniversity of NewcastleCallaghanAustralia

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