FT Kurki Tuuli and working group (MadEnCounters)

495000 €

Visibilising counter-stories of mental health

Tieteellinen tutkimus / siihen pohjautuva työ | Kolmivuotinen

Visibilising counter-stories of mental health -project explores, narrates and visibilises ‘other ways of knowing’ mental distress through research and art. Its theoretical framework combines psycho-politics and Mad Studies with critical race, whiteness and disability studies. Through participatory methodology counter-stories of mental health are to be narrated and visualised in collaboration with mental health service users/survivors (young adults aged 16 to 29 with lived experience of mental distress in the intersections of multiple identity categories) and mental health advocates (activists, professionals, volunteers and families). To understand the wider context in which mental distress is lived and experienced, the project examines how mental health system is potentially racializing, gendering, heteronorming, classing and disabling, and creates a space for systemic critique of mental health epistemes by understanding mental distress as personally and politically relevant reactions in an environment that produces injustices, social hierarchies and oppression. The project team organises in collaboration with activists, advocates and service users/survivors counter-storytelling and art workshops to discuss, narrate and visualise mental distress and encounters in mental health system. A collective advocacy group is formed between workshops participants, project team and collaborators to recognise, challenge and dismantle mental health system as oppressive and marginalising, and to create new forms of radical care. The project produces both research publications and artistic outcomes, including comics, zines, a resistance-themed board game that are to be displayed in art exhibition open for wider public to visibilise counter-stories of mental health.