Part 1: What is insanity?
In the first part of this course, which starts halfway the first semester, we discuss the definition of insanity. You will read a couple of sociological papers on this topic and present these papers to one another. You will make a discourse analysis of insanity through time, and we discuss how insanity manifests itself in different contexts (eg. Europe versus Africa). The aim of this first part is for you to develop your own sociological definition of insanity. Your will present this definition to your fellow students.
A guest lecture by Sven, author of the book "ingewikkeld" will also take place in this first part. At a young age, Sven suffered from two psychoses. This guest lecture tells the story of Sven’s life and how he survived this period.
Part 2: How we approach madness?
The second part of the in-depth study will start in the second semester. In this part, we focus on how insanity is treated. We will focus specifically on the anti-psychiatry movement and other more recent therapeutic interventions. We will make a field trip to the Guislain Museum in Ghent. In addition, a guest lecture will be given by a behavioral therapist, who explained to us how the current evidence-based psychology / psychiatry treats insane people.
Part 3: Insanity and art
In the third part, we turn to the relationship between insanity and art. Although madness in most contexts seen as negative, in the arts it is often romanticized. We ask you to make an in-depth analysis of one artist of your choice (musician, artist, writer, filmmaker, ...).