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Depression Promotion in Consumer Advocacy: Sick Brains, Scrutinized Behavior, and Self-Healing

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Abstract:

The broad spectrum diagnosis of depression and the practice of overdiagnosing depression has become common in North American culture over the past two decades. Depression is now a household term, and a viable market of recovery products, particularly psychopharmaceutical drugs, has thus arisen that normalizes not only the diagnosis but new self-help practices. A depression "script" shared by scientists, psychiatrists, state policy discourse and advocacy groups has been launched, informing consumers that major depression is a tangible risk, that certain groups (women, children and seniors) are more at risk, and that early detection is necessary to fend off slippage from symptom to major mental disorder. This paper addresses how consumer mental health advocacy groups participate in the promotion of depression diagnoses and the impact of this promotion. The paper analyzes how the discourses of groups including the National Alliance of the Mentally Ill (NAMI) and National Mental Health Consumerís Self-help Clearing House (NMHCA), among others, promote depression and how these discourses intersect with and diverge from State, pharmaceutical and science discourses. The paper suggests that the consumer advocacy discourse encourages self-scrutiny and the scrutiny of otherís mundane behaviors. More, this increasing attention to our own behaviors causes individuals to self-govern, thereby encouraging a society that circumscribes and restrains potentially deviant moods or behaviors, and constrains free human behavior.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

depress (169), consum (131), self (97), group (86), behavior (83), script (79), mental (76), nami (72), cultur (61), health (60), state (57), discours (52), product (48), drug (43), activ (38), recoveri (38), individu (38), ill (37), pharmaceut (37), work (36), biopsychiatr (35),

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diagnosis, depression, psychopharmaceutical,self-governance, symptom
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MLA Citation:

Gardner, Paula. "Depression Promotion in Consumer Advocacy: Sick Brains, Scrutinized Behavior, and Self-Healing" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Marriott Hotel, San Diego, CA, May 27, 2003 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p111895_index.html>

APA Citation:

Gardner, P. M. , 2003-05-27 "Depression Promotion in Consumer Advocacy: Sick Brains, Scrutinized Behavior, and Self-Healing" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Marriott Hotel, San Diego, CA Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p111895_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: The broad spectrum diagnosis of depression and the practice of overdiagnosing depression has become common in North American culture over the past two decades. Depression is now a household term, and a viable market of recovery products, particularly psychopharmaceutical drugs, has thus arisen that normalizes not only the diagnosis but new self-help practices. A depression "script" shared by scientists, psychiatrists, state policy discourse and advocacy groups has been launched, informing consumers that major depression is a tangible risk, that certain groups (women, children and seniors) are more at risk, and that early detection is necessary to fend off slippage from symptom to major mental disorder. This paper addresses how consumer mental health advocacy groups participate in the promotion of depression diagnoses and the impact of this promotion. The paper analyzes how the discourses of groups including the National Alliance of the Mentally Ill (NAMI) and National Mental Health Consumerís Self-help Clearing House (NMHCA), among others, promote depression and how these discourses intersect with and diverge from State, pharmaceutical and science discourses. The paper suggests that the consumer advocacy discourse encourages self-scrutiny and the scrutiny of otherís mundane behaviors. More, this increasing attention to our own behaviors causes individuals to self-govern, thereby encouraging a society that circumscribes and restrains potentially deviant moods or behaviors, and constrains free human behavior.

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Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 30
Word count: 11282
Text sample:
PROMOTING DEPRESSION IN CONSUMER ADVOCACY: SICK BRAINS SCRUTINIZED BEHAVIOR AND SELF-HEALING ‚ÄúThe choice is mine. Just for today I will try to adjust myself to what is and not force everything to adjust to my own desires. I will accept my family my friends my business my circumstances as they come‚ÄĚ. EmotionsAnonymous.Org ‚ÄúThe self that is liberated is obliged to live its life tied to the project of its own identity‚ÄĚ. Nicholas Rose 1990 p.24 Depression which was an
Eve. 1993 Tendencies Duke University Press Durham N.C. Silverstein Ken. 1999 ‚ÄėProzac.org‚Äô MOJO Wire Mother Jones Journal [Electronic] Available URL: http://www.motherjones.com/mother_jones/ND99/nami.html.. [1999 December 2] Valverde Mariana. 1998 Diseases of the Will Alcohol and the Dilemmas of Freedom Cambridge University Press Cambridge. 29 Walsh B.T. Siedman S.N. Sysko R. and Gould M.2002 ‚ÄėPlacebo Response Studies of Major Depression: Variable Substantial and Growing‚Äô Journal of the American Medical Association 287 1840‚Äď 1847. Wernick Andrew. 1991 Promotional Culture; Advertising Ideology and Symbolic


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