Living Outside Mental Illness

Qualitative Studies of Recovery in Schizophrenia

227 pages

5 illustrations

August, 2003

ISBN: 9780814719435

$26

Paper

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Author

Larry Davidson is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Program on Poverty, Disability, and Urban Health of the Yale University Institution for Social and Policy Studies. He also serves as Senior Clinical Officer and Mental Health Policy Director for the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.

All books by Larry Davidson

Schizophrenia is widely considered the most severe and disabling of the mental illnesses. Yet recent research has demonstrated that many people afflicted with the disorder are able to recover to a significant degree.

Living Outside Mental Illness demonstrates the importance of listening to what people diagnosed with schizophrenia themselves have to say about their struggle, and shows the dramatic effect this approach can have on clinical practice and social policy. It presents an in-depth investigation, based on a phenomenological perspective, of experiences of illness and recovery as illuminated by compelling first-person descriptions.

This volume forcefully makes the case for the utility of qualitative methods in improving our understanding of the reasons for the success or failure of mental health services. The research has important clinical and policy implications, and will be of key interest to those in psychology and the helping professions as well as to people in recovery and their families.

Reviews

  • “Davidson’s book leaves one with an image of the inside of schizophrenia as essentially mysterious but the possibilities of recovery as hopeful if uncertain.”

    Journal of Mental Health

  • “The book provides a window into the experiences of a person with schizophrenia . . . a rich narrative.”

    The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease

  • “This volume makes the case for the utility of qualitative methods in improving our understanding of the reasons for the success or failure of mental health services.”

    Family Therapy

  • “I see this book as an important accomplishment. It contains numerous helpful suggestions about how to go about eliciting narratives as a means of encouraging patients along their recovery journey.”

    Psychiatric Services

  • “Davidson takes an interesting approach to the disorder and makes a compelling case for the use of person centered narratives to find out what is going on with recovery in persons with schizophrenia. Recommended.”

    Choice

  • Living Outside Mental Illness is more than a recapitulation of previously published research.”

    Metapsychology Online Book Reviews