Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Mentally Ill People: Stereotyped in Movies?

Magazine article Nutrition Health Review

Mentally Ill People: Stereotyped in Movies?

Article excerpt

Americans love a good story, and they spend billions every yeat at the movies to hear the stories Hollywood tells. But a new critical review, published recently shows that when those stories involve people who suffer with mental illnesses or those who treat them, moviemakers almost always get the story wrong.

The review, conducted by psychiatrists Steven E. Hyler, M.D. of New York State Psychiatric Indtitute, Glen O. Gabbard, M.D. of the C.F. Menninger Memorial Hospital, and Irving Schneider,M.D., a psychiatrist in private practice in Chevy Chase, Md., says that movies, to ehich so many turn for entertainment and understanding of the human condition, almost uniformily present a view of mental illness and those who suffer with them that neglects the real suffering and triumph of their lives.

"Movies and television have generally portrayed people with mental illnesses in sterotyped ways," says Dr.Hyler. "And we believe this has an important and underestimated negative effect on the public's perception of these people."

To illustrate, Dr. Hyler and co-authors present six steroetypes moviemakers usually settle on their portrayal of mental patients: the rebelious free spirit (Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Next)," the "homicidal manic (Anthony Perkins in Psycho)," the "seductress (Jean Seberg in Lilith)," the "iconoclast (Sean Connery in A Fine Madness)," the "parasite (the group theraphy patients in Lovesick)," and the "zoo specimen (Woody Allen in Zelig). …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.