Re: crazy people/Re: explination of feminist perspective

Gary F. Blanchard (
Sat, 12 Apr 1997 22:28:29 -0700

Dear Bob-

I think you have nailed down an excellent summary of the situation,
regarding the nature of 'crazy,' when you wrote:

> Even offical
> classification systems change over time as to what constitutes a mental
> disorder. This can be as much a sociological/historical question, e.g.,
> homosexuality is no longer classed as a mental illness/disorder.
> Interreliability studies abound on judgements made by psychiatrists and
> other mental health workers, from my recollection agreement varies
> significantly according to the type of diagnosis being considered (e.g.,
> schizophrenia versus some form personality disorder). the literature on
> professional judgement suggests experts do not necessarily agree, even when
> it comes to things like reading an x-ray.
> There will probably be some extremes of behaviour we can readily agree upon
> as "crazy", it gets far more contentious as subtleties are encountered.
You conclude with the questions:

> As a starting point what constitutes 'crazy behaviour for you? What sorts
> of actions/behviour speech suggest craziness?

I don't feel I have the competence to respond in any significant way,
here. Perhaps some of our colleagues with more direct experience in
this area would care to.

With all due respect, I believe we have gotten off on a tangent.
Looking back, I find that:

On 27 Mar, Gary Blanchard wrote,

>However, it does not follow that because we are free to construe, we can
>just construe any old way we want. Crazy people do that; that's why we
>call them 'crazy.' Effectively communicating (i.e., coordinating) people
>always seek to match their interpretation/construal of a matter up with
>the interpretion/construal of their partner(s)-- hence the oft-repeated
>question/comment: 'know what I mean?'

What do you think? Where should we go from here?