• Hi. It’s great to see you. Welcome!

    Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life. Amongst our membership there is a wealth of expertise that has been developed through having to deal with mental health issues.

    We are an actively moderated forum with a team of experienced moderators. We also have a specialist safety team that works extra hard to keep the forum safe for visitors and members.

    Register now to access many more features and forums!

Philosophy of Psychiatry



Sep 25, 2012
Planet Lunatic Asylum
Philosophy of Psychiatry (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Philosophical discussions of mental illness fall into three families. First, there are topics that arise when we treat psychiatry as a special science and deal with it using the methods and concepts of philosophy of science. This includes discussion of such issues as explanation, reduction and classification. Second, there are conceptual issues that arise when we try to understand the very idea of mental illness and its ethical and experiential dimensions. Third, there are interactions between psychopathology and the philosophy of mind; philosophers have used clinical phenomena to illuminate issues in the philosophy of mind, and philosophical findings to try to understand mental illness.

What can philosophy do for psychiatry?


This article illustrates the practical impact of recent developments in the philosophy of psychiatry in five key areas: patient-centred practice, new models of service delivery, neuroscience research, psychiatric education, and the organisation of psychiatry as an international science-led discipline focused on patient care. We conclude with a note on the role of philosophy in countering the stigmatisation of mental disorder.

Google 'Philosophy of Psychiatry' for a lot of results.

A few books on the subject -

The Disordered Mind: An Introduction to Philosophy of Mind and Mental Illness
by George Graham

The Philosophy of Psychiatry: A Companion (International Perspectives in Philosophy and Psychiatry)
by Jennifer Radden

The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Psychiatry (Oxford Handbooks)
by KWM Fulford, Martin Davies, Richard Gipps

Steps to an Ecology of Mind: Collected Essays in Anthropology, Psychiatry, Evolution, and Epistemology
by Gregory Bateson


Well-known member
Mar 26, 2016
North Carolina
I think psychiatry desperately needs philosophy.

It needs those of us discussing it on this blog, frankly.

But thankfully, I seem to have won over my psychiatrist. I felt like she wanted to 'fix' me till I went crazy for real.

Then I got some sleep and she changed her mind.

But I digress.

Psychiatry with no thought to the human condition is just torture of human lab rats.