Involuntary Mental Hospitalization

A Crime Against Humanity
  • Thomas Szasz

Abstract

For some time now I have maintained that commitment—that is, the detention of persons in mental institutions against their will—is a form of imprisonment;1 that such deprivation of liberty is contrary to the moral principles embodied in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States;2 and that it is a crass violation of contemporary concepts of fundamental human rights.3 The practice of “sane” men incarcerating their “insane” fellow men in “mental hospitals” can be compared to that of white men enslaving black men. In short, I consider commitment a crime against humanity.

Keywords

Mental Illness Typhoid Fever Language Game Slave Trade Slave Owner 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas Szasz

There are no affiliations available

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