Mind and Body Spaces: Geographies of Illness, Impairment, and Disability

Mind and Body Spaces: Geographies of Illness, Impairment, and Disability

Mind and Body Spaces: Geographies of Illness, Impairment, and Disability

Mind and Body Spaces: Geographies of Illness, Impairment, and Disability

Synopsis

Mind and Body Spaces highlights new international research from the US, Canada, Britain and Australia on bodily impairment, mental health and disabled peoples' social worlds. International contributors discuss a variety of current issues including the historical conceptions of the body and behavior as well as masculinity and sexuality.

Excerpt

Hester Parr and Ruth Butler

I've found that if I don't have a good living situation, I'll end up back in hospital. I'm serious when I tell people I get suicidal if I don't have a good place to live.

(quoted in Kearns 1987:165-6, cited in Taylor et al. 1989:153)

I get up at 8 o'clock in the morning and I usually have coffee and watch Canada am. and then I do my exercises…and I putter around the house or… I seem to have a heck of a lot of medical appointments. I don't think I've had a week without a medical appointment of some description.

(quoted in Dyck 1995:316)

Since I had my cataracts operated on, that's given me, the cosmetic effect of it has given me more self confidence. Because I look more normal, or so called 'normal'.

(quoted in Butler and Bowlby 1997:423)

The three extracts above are from interviews quoted in three recent human geographical studies: the first being orientated around people with mental health problems, the second around women with multiple sclerosis and the third around people with visual impairments. These three quotations, and the studies from which they are drawn, are linked in various and quite problematic ways. At first glance these studies are dealing with very different aspects of the mind and body (in biomedical terminology: mental illness, multiple sclerosis and

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