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Madness, distress and the politics of disablement$
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Helen Spandler, Helen Spandler, Jill Anderson, and Bob Sapey

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781447314578

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447314578.001.0001

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date: 18 August 2017

Unsettling impairment: mental health and the social model of disability

Unsettling impairment: mental health and the social model of disability

Chapter:
(p.57) Four Unsettling impairment: mental health and the social model of disability
Source:
Madness, distress and the politics of disablement
Author(s):

William J Penson

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447314578.003.0005

This chapter explores the problems facing the use of the social model of disability in relation to mental distress. Impairment is a key component of both medical and social models, but in the mental health field, underlying impairment has yet to be identified. It follows that both the impairment and imposition of barriers, discrimination etc are socially constructed, raising the possibility of a 'double' social model wherein notions of impairment are actually predicated on socially (un)valued differences. While the social model is historically linked to activism, accepting impairment exists in states of distress may be a concession to the medical model.

Keywords:   social model of disability, double social model, impairment, mental health, activism, medical model, mental distress

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