Talk is cheap: diverse dignities at the centre of mental disorder

It may be fairly easy to say that the dignity of a person in the domain of psychiatry should be respected. Justification is easy to find. For example, the South African Constitution proclaims
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It may be fairly easy to say that the dignity of a person in the domain of psychiatry should be respected. Justification is easy to find. For example, the South African Constitution proclaims ‘everyone has inherent dignity and the right to have their dignity respected and protected.’ When simply a pretence, this kind of talk is obviously cheap. But pretence isn’t the only reason behind such statements. Cheap talk presents as a gap between a principle and its practice. In paying lip-service to the principle, ‘respect’ becomes a mere token of respect rather than the real McCoy, with that being the action of holding the dignity of the person in high regard. And before prematurely thinking of course, I do that, recognise the taxing challenges in doing so. I highlight here two major challenges in the practice of holding the dignity of a person in high regard: recognising the effects mental disorder has on one’s dignity, and accounting for the diversity of ways. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Philosophy

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