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  1. Fulltext. Public conceptions of mental illness : Labels, causes, dangerousness, and social distance.

    Article - En anglais

    Fulltext.

    Objectives

    The authors used nationwide survey data to characterize current public conceptions related to recognition of mental illness and perceived causes, dangerousness, and desired social distance.

    Methods

    Data were derived from a vignette experiment inciuded in the 1996 General Social Survey.

    Respondents (n=1444) were randomly assigned to I of 5 vignette conditions.

    Four vignettes described psychiatric disorders meeting diagnostic criteria, and the fifth depicted a « troubled person » with sub-clinical problems and worries.

    Results

    Results indicate that the majority of the public identifies schizophrenia (88%) and major depression (69%) as mental illnesses and that most report multicausal explanations combining stressful circumstances with biologic and genetic factors.

    Results also show, however, that smaller proportions associate alcohol (49%) or drug (44%) abuse with mental illness and that symptoms of mental illness remain strongly connected with public fears about potential violence and with a desire for limited social interaction.

    Conclusions

    While there is reason for optimism in the public's recognition of mental illness and causal attributions, a strong stereotype of dangerousness and desire for social distance persist.

    These latter conceptions are likely to negatively affect people with mental illness.

    Mots-clés Pascal : Opinion publique, Perception sociale, Trouble psychiatrique, Santé mentale, Aspect social, Homme, Croyance, Etats Unis, Amérique du Nord, Amérique, Attitude

    Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Public opinion, Social perception, Mental disorder, Mental health, Social aspect, Human, Belief, United States, North America, America, Attitude

    Logo du centre Notice produite par :
    Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique

    Cote : 99-0517247

    Code Inist : 002B18H08. Création : 18/05/2000.