Year 2: Cultural and Mediated Representations of Anti-social Personality Disorder

Year 2: Cultural and Mediated Representations of Anti-social Personality Disorder

The central event of the second year of the series will be a 2 day event that will examine Media Representations of the problem. The topic of ASPD has consistently been one that has been subject to often very vivid, even lurid representation in popular media. From ‘gothic’ novels (Rafter and Ystehede 2010), and classic literature (During 1988; Symington 1980) to Hitchcockian film genres (Covey 2009), artistic representations have long been used to present issues of mental disorder (Boime 1991). Media representations have themselves played a part in shaping legal responses to high profile crimes, for example the trial of Daniel M’Naghten, the sexual psychopath laws in the US (Freedman 1987), and the trial of John Hinckley in the US . This event will be a collaboration with the ‘Media and the Inner World’ who have an established network of researchers and practitioners in the media field who are interested in the links between (http://www.miwnet.org/Website/). As well as representing problems, art also facilitates understanding, communication and and can be a therapeutic outlet (Fonagy 2012). Thus we will also involve the participation of art psychotherapists and students from The Centre for Psychotherapy in Northern Ireland who have particular experience of using the potentially healing impact of art for individuals and communities whose lives have been scarred by violence.

The theme of the significance of the popular representation of extreme antisocial behaviour will continue into the next events. Firstly, we will examine the cultural, social and political processes whereby individuals come to be viewed as marginal, excluded and subject to public disparagement: Shirkers, Scroungers and ASBOS?

We will also hold an event that will examine the relevance of concepts of disordered personalities to understanding issues of institutional disorder in both the private and public sectors: The Organisation of Disorder: Snakes in Suits? This will explore whether the notion of the ‘corporate psychopath’ is helpful to understanding organisational misgovernance and apparently damaging manifestations of greed (as perhaps exemplified by the banking crises.

Year 3. The implications of ‘cross-disciplinary’ and psychosocial models of Anti-social Personality Disorder.