Storytelling beyond the psychiatric gaze

Inviting people with lived experience to share their stories is now common practice in education, mental health, and broader community venues.

Yet even when the intent of the stories shared are to offer systemic critique of mental health epistemes, it is difficult to hear such stories beyond the psychiatric gaze. In this article, Jijian Voronka argues that individual storytelling practices now get processed through resiliency and recovery metanarratives that continue to position both the problem and its potential solution at the level of individual bodies. By offering an account of her own experiences of storytelling, she explores the limits, risks, and productive functions of this practice.

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