Dr. Paula Caplan on how psychiatrists decide who’s normal

Transcribed from the interview:

We focus on what are really the consequences of horrible social forces and we say lets look at this persons internal, individual, psychological problem. And that doesn’t mean that a therapist or group might not be able to help somebody like that, but it means there is no prevention going on anymore…

*A point for clarity–this video is quite a few years old, although the date it was uploaded to youtube is 2010. You’ll see that these issues have been alive for some of us for many years. Not just with the advent of DSM5.



Paula J. Caplan, Ph.D, is a clinical and research psychologist, author of books and plays, playwright, actor, and director. She was born and raised in Springfield, Missouri, received her A.B. with honors from Radcliffe College of Harvard University, and received her M.A. and Ph.D. in psychology from Duke University. She is currently an Associate at Harvard University’s DuBois Institute, working on their Voices of Diversity project, and a Fellow at the Women and Public Policy Program of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. She has given more than 400 invited addresses and invited workshops and has done more than 1,000 media interviews as part of her work in public education and activism.

She is former Full Professor of Applied Psychology and Head of the Centre for Women’s Studies in Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, and former Lecturer in Women’s Studies and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto.

Posts on Beyond Meds by Paula Caplan:

●  Stop the DSM5: two actions to take now

●  Emotional Healing Without Pathologizing or Drugging: a veterans day post

●  Full Disclosure Needed About Psychiatric Drugs That Shorten Life

●  What’s Wrong With This Picture? Psychiatrists’ Focus on Drugs and Emotional Distance: by Paula Caplan

●  Military Families and Psychiatry

●  When Johnny and Jane Come Marching Home: how all of us can help veterans

● Fattened by pills

Books by Paula Caplan:

● The Myth of Women’s Masochism: with a new preface by the author

When Johnny and Jane Come Marching Home: How All of Us Can Help Veterans

They Say You’re Crazy: How The World’s Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who’s Normal

Bias In Psychiatric Diagnosis

Thinking Critically about Research on Sex and Gender (3rd Edition)

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