Monday, 9 June 2008

Update to "Strokes of insight and blind spots"

First of all a correction: Jill Bolte Taylor is a neuroanatomist, not a neurologist as I incorrectly wrote yesterday.

And an additional note: NAMI is an organization that, according to its own mission statement, aims to provide "support, education and advocacy" for the "mentally ill" and, especially, their relatives, and "is dedicated (...) to the improvement of quality of life for persons of all ages who are affected by mental illnesses."

One thing that by now would have to be regarded as a real improvement of quality of life for NAMI's target group is the endeavour of minimalizing discrimination of people labelled "mentally ill" through the use of a wording that, for instance, says "an individual who has schizophrenia" rather than "a schizophrenic individual". Jill Bolte Taylor, in her position as president of a NAMI affiliate, should be familiar with this. Nonetheless, she does not correct Oprah when the latter refers to Jill Bolte Taylor's "schizophrenic brother". Oprah Winfrey is a person with an enormous influence in the public. Jill Bolte Taylor here misses a unique and important opportunity to really practice some advocacy, education, and support for people labelled with "schizophrenia".

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I strongly recommend you read Dr. Taylor's book MY STROKE OF INSIGHT - you will see that she does take the roll you recommend. It's a beautifully written book and an incredible story - absolutely the best book I've read in a long time. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did