US Attitudes Toward Mental Illnesses

In the first question we read and talked about the difficulty of finding a legitimate basis for labeling the behavior of others as “abnormal” We also pointed out in lecture that this process bears a significant ethical burden as well. There can be a lot of stigma, prejudice, loss of self esteem and real harm directed toward a person who is labeled as “having a mental illness”


Please discuss for this question about U.S. attitudes toward mental illness as it relates to the different etiological models of pathology. Please discuss the following issue:

  • In your experience how is mental illness seen in today’s American Culture. How do the various models of etiology affect these attitudes?
  • Do people generally more or less understand and accept people with problems if they believe mental illness comes from problems in a person’s biology, thinking, past learning experiences or current/past cultural settings?

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