Melbourne Mad Studies Network

Next reading group: Tuesday 21st June 2022

Coming up in June we are excited to have Emma Tseris, Scarlett Franks, and Eva Bright Hart coming along to facilitate a discussion on their recent paper “Beyond binaries: complex roles and identities in mental health research.”

Date: Tuesday 21st June, 2022

Time: 7pm-8.30pm Melbourne/Canberra/Sydney

Zoom link:  

Passcode: 671475

Link to calendar invite


1. Emma Tseris, Scarlett Franks & Eva Bright Hart (2022) Beyond binaries: complex roles and identities in critical mental health research, Disability & Society, 37:4, 718-723

2. Deegan, Patricia. “Recovery as a journey of the heart.” Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal 19 (1996): 91-97.

The authors have prepared some discussion questions:

  • What resonates for you in terms of the challenges of defining our roles/identities in the critical mental health space, or the complexities of disclosure?
  • Across our different identities, what is our common ground and what can we work towards together?
  • Turning the gaze: Is ‘recovery’ possible for our professions, employers, workplaces?

Looking forward to seeing you then!

Do you know anyone who might be interested in leading one of the monthly reading groups? Maybe that person is you? Maybe it’s someone whose work you admire? All that is required is to choose two-three readings on a topic – readings can include a podcast or video, or written texts – that are relatively accessible to a general, but interested audience (i.e. we don’t usually read dense legal theory or highly specialised philosophical texts, although often they will be challenging and we can support each other to understand them!) and contact us and we can lock in a date. The person would then need to come on the night prepared with a little bit of an intro and maybe some questions to prompt discussion (this is very flexible). The group is very friendly and the network facilitators will have your back. Let us know –

‘Madness is the only way I stay alive. I used to be a comedian, a long time ago! It’s true. There’s some good memories. … It’s too late to be sane, too late! You’ve got to go full-tilt bozo. Cos you’re only given a little spark of madness, and if you lose that, you’re nothing. Don’t. From me to you, don’t ever lose that, cos it keeps you alive. … That’s my only love, crazy.’

-Robin Williams (Little Spark of Madness, 1978)

‘Let me begin by saying that I came to theory because I was hurting-the pain within me was so intense that I could not go on living. I came to theory desperate, wanting to comprehend-to grasp what was happening around and within me. Most importantly, I wanted to make the hurt go away. I saw in theory then a location for healing.’

-bell hooks (Theory as Liberatory Practice, 1991)

‘Academia can be an imposing or off-putting environment for many, and Mad Studies grapples with its relationship to class, privilege, language, exclusion, practice, activism and accessibility… It is intended as a bridge between the academic space and people who are contributing to the world in other ways – activists, artists, peer workers, critical thinkers, agitators, survivors and the rest. …with Mad Love!’

-Flick Grey (Mad Studies Conversation Starters, 2019)