Lunacy Administration: Racism and the Haunting of American Psychiatry: A Lecture by Mab Segrest

Lecture | April 16 | 5-6:30 p.m. | Wheeler Hall, Maude Fife Room, 315 Wheeler

 Mab Segrest

 Disability Studies Program

Mab Segrest for four decades has worked in a range of settings organizing, teaching, and shaping scholarship as a public intellectual. Her new book, Administrations of Lunacy, will come out next Spring from the New Press. It is based on Segrest's 15-year study of the archives of Georgia's state mental hospital at Milledgeville. A 25th anniversary edition of Segrest’s award-winning book, Memoir of a Race Traitor, will come out next Fall, also from the New Press. Segrest is Fuller-Maathai Professor Emeritus of Gender and Women's Studies at Connecticut College, where she chaired the department from 2002 to 2014. Last year she was a fellow at the National Humanities Center in Durham. She lives in Durham, NC, where she works with Southerners on New Ground (SONG) on ending money bail and prison abolition.

What does it mean that a culture that promoted slavery and lynching decided who was and was not sane? What do we see from an asylum in a slave-drenched culture such as Georgia's about how racism haunts American psychiatry in ways that impact us profoundly today? What can we know about the lives that patients lived in an institution segregated by race and gender, and in what ways did they resist, talk back, or theorize their own experiences? Mab Segrest addresses these questions based on her fifteen-year study of Georgia's state mental hospital at MIlledgeville, once the largest in the world, with a graveyard of 25,000 people.

Free and open to the public. Wheelchair accessible. Please refrain from wearing scented products at this event. If you require access for effective communication (ASL interpreting, CART captioning, alternative media formats, etc.) or information about campus mobility access features, please contact Susan Schweik at sschweik@berkeley.edu, with as much advance notice as possible.

Co-sponsored by Professor Karen Nakamura and the HIFIS Disability Studies Cluster, Dean Carla Hesse and the Division of Social Sciences, Dean Anthony Cascardi and the Division of Arts and Humanities, the Townsend Center for the Humanities, the Center for the Study of Law and Society, Rad Med/Mad Med, the Department of Psychology, the American Cultures Center, the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, and the Department of African American Studies.

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 sschweik@berkeley.edu