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Medical Humanities and Health Studies Seminar

11-08-2018 12:00 PM - 01:00 PM

Elizabeth A. Nelson, PhD, assistant professor, MHHS; adjunct professor, history, presents, "Treatment, Rehabilitation, and Care at Central State Psychiatric Hospital c. 1990." 

Elizabeth Nelson will explore patient-staff interactions at Indiana’s Central State Hospital (1848-1994) in the years before its closure, revealing intricate technologies of care on the Dual Diagnosis Unit (DDU). Based on patient-produced newsletters, archival sources, and oral history interviews with former staff, Nelson reconstructs three rehabilitative technologies – Family-Style Dining, the Sheltered Workshop, and the Newspaper Club – and the tensions between the daily practice of care and the goal of achieving patient autonomy that each embodied. This talk not only sheds light on the experiences of patients with multiple disabilities and the roles played by allied health professionals at a state psychiatric facility, but also allows us to consider deinstitutionalization, at least in the case of the DDU, as a disruption of care.