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Madness Case: “In Two Minds” Film Study

Utilized Artifact

Today I would like to talk about how problems in wellness can be overcome by analyzing different approaches or conducting relevant research. I will analyze the issue using a film called “In two minds: Is mental illness really an illness?madness” published by Films Media Group (1991). The film discusses if madness is an illness that can be diagnosed and cured. Currently, there are two approaches to the matter. On the one hand, recognizing mental conditions as illnesses helps to develop interventions and help people function normally. On the other hand, the approach disregards free will and sees people as machines.

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Challenges and Benefits

Based on the analysis of artifact, several benefits and challenges can be outlined. When talking about benefits, using relevant research and diverse perspectives can help to identify alternative viewpoints on the issues. For instance, in the discussed film, there were two alternatives that evolved throughout centuries. On the one hand, psychiatrists view schizophrenia as a disease, while others see it as a change in behavior caused by free will. If relevant research is used, one can avoid reinventing a viewpoint. At the same time, using appropriate research helps to avoid making the mistakes of previous researchers. In the film, it was mentioned that DSM III revised the errors of DSM II, which included homosexuality as a mental disorder, which implies that DSM II avoided the mistakes made in DSM II. Finally, looking at diverse perspectives can help to synergize the approaches by using rational criteria. In particular, one can use the concept of free will to modify the current understanding of schizophrenia as an illness.

However, using relevant research or diverse perspectives is associated with various challenges. First, the criteria for evaluation of perspectives will always be subjective. The movie demonstrates that the first diagnosis criteria included such things as walking into church with a lighted cigarette or demonstrating free will. This means that criteria are heavily impacted by social norms and personal views. Second, the analysis may exclude some valuable alternatives. For instance, the movie demonstrated only two alternatives to viewing madness: disease or not a disease. However, it did not include how different religions explain the phenomenon, which may be valuable. Finally, using the opinions of previous researchers may decrease innovation. The film demonstrates that there was no innovation in psychiatry since the late 1800s, which may be the result of trying to work based on previous research.

Adding Value

Apart from the benefits described in the previous slide, Critical analysis of wellness adds value to personal and professional conversations. First, it helps to formulate a viewpoint. Next time, when speaking about schizophrenia, I will argue that it is an illness that is well described due to the absence of scientific methods for a reliable diagnosis. Second, such analysis helps to use facts rather than emotions when conveying an idea. In the future, when speaking about schizophrenia, I will say that, in Italy, there are special accommodations for people with mental disorders that help to reduce stigma. Finally, next time when speaking about mental illnesses, I will speak with greater confidence, as I have knowledge of the subject I can use.


Films Media Group. (1991). In two minds: Is mental illness really an illness? ‒ madness [Video file]. Films on Demand. Web.

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