161. Roy Richard Grinker — Nobody’s Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness
For centuries, scientists and society cast moral judgments on anyone deemed mentally ill, confining many to asylums. In episode 161 of The Michael Shermer Show, Dr. Shermer speaks with anthropologist Dr. Roy Richard Grinker about his book Nobody’s Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness which chronicles the progress and setbacks in the struggle against mental-illness stigma — from the 18th century, through America’s major wars, and into today’s high-tech economy. Drawing on cutting-edge science, historical archives, and cross-cultural research in Africa and Asia, Grinker takes readers on an international journey to discover the origins of, and variances in, our cultural response to neurodiversity. Shermer and Grinker discuss: the DSM, ADHD, PTSD, the autism spectrum, schizophrenia, labels and stigma, neuroses vs. psychoses, mental vs. medical models, brain/mind dualism, blacks and drapetomania, homelessness and mental illness, and the future of madness and normalcy.