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date: 20 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Discursive ethics focuses on the positioning of people in situations that validate certain constructions (such as mental disorder, individual dysfunction, the biological basis of psychiatric conditions). The soul (or psyche) results from disciplines that have shaped a person’s experience and are inscribed in their body, thought and behavior in terms of such constructions. A discursive critique examines the relationship between such constructions, a marginalized or suffering soul, and the clinical situations into which they enter. Psychiatric narratives begin with “detection” pathways shaped by the biomedical model. They create “docile bodies,” the workings of which are considered to be evident to experts as the patient and their clinical journey become subject to disciplines that may be alien to their own politico-aesthetic project, creating discursive situations that can all-too-easily silence the voice of suffering and what it is trying to say. However, patients and clinicians can work together within a responsive mode of ethics - one which generates a powerful, co-constructed conception of health, ethical truth, and justification.

Keywords: discursive ethics, psychiatric narratives, psyche, soul, ethical truth, justification, responsive, voice, biomedical model

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