Sponsored byInstitute for the HumanitiesSimon Fraser University

Making ‘Mad’ Laws: Explorations and Critiques of Law-Making on Insanity, Mental Disorder and Mental Health

The role of law in the regulation of madness and mad people has been pervasive and far reaching. Historically, the making of law and social policy aimed at identifying, classifying and managing the subjects of ‘madness’ (including defences of insanity/mental disorder, mental health legislation, eugenics policies, civil commitment etc.) has largely been the purview and privilege of an elite group of professionals. However, with the rise of rights discourse and activism, psychiatric survivor movements and advocates for social justice, the participants involved in some areas of law-making have changed (or are changing).