May 29, 2012
For much of this year, I’ve been writing about the need for more inclusive and public dialogue not only on the DSM-5 but the broader issue of the diagnostic way of life and alternatives to it.
On Friday, June 8, I’ll be part of such a dialogue, as the East Side Institute hosts, “The Human Cost of Diagnosis,” 7-8:30 pm at the NYU School of Law, Vanderbilt Hall, 40 Washington Square South, Rm 206. Joining me will be sociologist Gil Eyal and social therapist Christine LaCerva.
Gil Eyal is Professor of Sociology at Columbia University whose work deals with the sociology of expertise, intellectuals and knowledge, in particular as it relates to broader political processes. Dr. Eyal is the author of several books, including (with Brendan Hart, Emine Onculer, Neta Oren and Natasha Rossi)The Autism Matrix: The Social Origins of the Autism Epidemic, which provides a sociological explanation for the current autism epidemic, and traces the blurring of boundaries between experts and laypeople that play a role in the dynamics leading to the epidemic.
Christine LaCerva is director of the Social Therapy Group in Manhattan and Brooklyn. With Fred Newman, the founder of Social Therapy, Christine has advanced a performatory approach to emotional development that helps clients creatively perform the many ‘scenes’ of their lives. She has a highly diverse, group-based practice, including groups that include multiple families and clients from ages 4 to 74. Ms. LaCerva directs the Institute’s Therapist Training Program and supervises practitioners across the U.S. and internationally. Read her columns.
Among the topics we’ll be exploring is changes to the Autism Spectrum, which have many parents worried about the loss of support services for their children, practitioners criticizing the arbitrariness of DSM-5 diagnostic categories in general, and others questioning the medical/diagnostic model as a whole. What are the history, politics and economics of diagnoses? Where is their science? Is the diagnostic paradigm a valid one? What is its human cost?
If you live in the New York metropolitan area, I hope you’ll join us.