There Has Been An Increase In The Proportion Of Persons Who Associate Mental Illness With Dangerousness

Topics: Mental disorder, Psychiatry, Schizophrenia, Mental health, Sociology, Mental illness / Pages: 6 (1682 words) / Published: Apr 17th, 2015
“There has been an increase in the proportion of persons who associate mental illness with dangerousness, violence, and unpredictability” (Markowitz, 2005: 3) With reference to this statement, what is the public understanding of the nature and extent of mental disorder and how accurate is this?

Intro
This essay will look at the public understanding of the nature of mental disorder and to what extent it is associated with dangerousness and violence. The essay will begin by exploring the public’s perspectives and opinions on the matter and the impact that the mentally ill have on crime rates. Specific social perspectives will also be explored..
And finally the clinical approach on mental disorders will be explored and the risk factors and how the patients are diagnosed.
Different definitions
Mental disorders have existed as long as humans have, although times have no changed and people have become more educated, this means that treatment for them is more readily available in society. The advancements in the knowledge of mental disorders have raised a series of problems and also solutions thus they are classified meaning that the symptoms are more easily diagnosed and treatable. There are many different definitions of mental illnesses based on peoples’ opinions and experiences. One recognisable reason behind this is the media and the media’s interpretation of the mentally ill in their portrayal of fictional characters. Hannibal Lecter and Patrick Bateman from American Psycho are both primary examples of this – both portrayed mentally ill serial killers and both came across as horrible people. These representations of the mentally ill contribute to the stereotypes throughout society, the public opinion of mentally disordered individuals relies greatly on how they are represented in the media.
Overall public opinion – 627
People with mental illness often have to struggle with two problems. The obvious problem being the symptoms of the disease itself, these

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