Medicalization of social behaviour. On utopia of a happy soul Cover Image

Medykalizacja zachowań społecznych, czyli o utopii szczęśliwej duszy
Medicalization of social behaviour. On utopia of a happy soul

Author(s): Jarosław Barański
Subject(s): Philosophy
Published by: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie
Keywords: mental ilness; medicalization

Summary/Abstract: The possibilities of therapeutic control of the nervous system encourage the trend towards the medicalization of social behaviors. It involves an interpretation of the emotions and human behavior in medical terms and accepting a possibility to change them by pharmacological therapy. Emotional expressions or non typical behavior that do not comply with the generally accepted standards recognized by medical experts, are defined as a disease (illness), or psychiatric disorders. The consequence of medical treatment of the mental disorders is an addiction to pharmacological agents that modify not only the behavior of the person but also their perception of themselves, and others, and their experience of the world. Compliance with social norms of behavior leads to the recognition of pharmacologically derived agitation or restraining, as normal and desirable. Moreover, a result of medicalization of social behavior is the belief that through chemical control of the central nervous system mental transformation can be achieved. Therefore, a manifestation of joy and openness, lack of sadness, fear, and grief, as well as resistance to stress is a social norm. Behind this norm there is the concept of health which is mental welfare obtained irrespective of the social environment in which somebody lives. This is a project of a happy soul, which seeks to ensure happiness of those who have lost it, peace to those who, because of others hitherto untreated, were restless.

  • Issue Year: 46/2010
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 151-164
  • Page Count: 14
  • Language: Polish