Document Detail

Reinventing intention: 'self-harm' and the 'cry for help' in postwar Britain.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23037964     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To sketch out how contemporary Anglophone literature on self-damaging behaviour negotiates serious conceptual difficulties around intention, and to demonstrate (in the British context) how the large-scale emergence of this type of behaviour is made possible by new forms of psychological provision at district general hospitals.
RECENT FINDINGS: In the past decade, there has been increasing public awareness of 'self-harm'. Despite the view that 'self-harm' has always existed, the British roots of the current 'epidemic' can be traced to changes in the organization of mental healthcare in the postwar period. These changes make possible new understandings of the story behind physical injuries, and allow these readings to be aggregated and projected onto a national, epidemic scale.
SUMMARY: The increasing provision of psychiatric expertise in general hospitals makes possible new interpretations of self-injury - as psychosocial communication, or affect self-regulation - and creates the phenomenon of 'self-harm' as we understand it today.
Chris Millard
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Current opinion in psychiatry     Volume:  25     ISSN:  1473-6578     ISO Abbreviation:  Curr Opin Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2012 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-10-05     Completed Date:  2013-03-06     Revised Date:  2013-09-10    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8809880     Medline TA:  Curr Opin Psychiatry     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  503-7     Citation Subset:  IM    
Centre for the History of Emotions, School of History, Queen Mary, University of London, Canterbury, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Great Britain
History, 20th Century
History, 21st Century
Mental Health Services / history*
Self-Injurious Behavior* / history,  psychology
Suicide, Attempted / history,  psychology
Grant Support
089708//Wellcome Trust; //Wellcome Trust

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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