Lay conceptions of mental disorder: The folk psychiatry model

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This article presents a theoretical model of laypeople's conceptions of mental disorder that is intended to serve as a basis for research and practice. This “folk psychiatry” model proposes that mental disorders, and other forms of psychological deviancy, are understood in terms of four underlying dimensions. Each dimension has a distinct cognitive underpinning, which is grounded in recent social psychological research and theory. Research evidence supporting the model is laid out, and implications of the model for public attitudes towards people suffering from mental disorders are discussed. The model offers a number of conceptual and practical advantages in an area where psychological theory has often been lacking.

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Journal Article

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