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UNE Center for Global Humanities presents 'What Is Mental Illness?'

The UNE Center for Global Humanities will present "What is Mental Illness?" with scholar Richard J. McNally on Jan. 27.
The UNE Center for Global Humanities will present "What is Mental Illness?" with scholar Richard J. McNally on Jan. 27.

January 15, 2020

The fifth edition of the “bible” of American psychiatry, the DSM-5, appeared seven years ago amidst a swirl of controversies. Some critics claimed psychiatry was colonizing ever more of everyday emotional life, erasing the distinction between normal emotional distress and psychiatric disorder. Others objected to the categorical medical model embodied in DSM-5, arguing that disorders differ more by degree than by kind. 

An upcoming lecture at the University of New England Center for Global Humanities with explore these and other controversies surrounding the DSM, as scholar Richard J. McNally presents “What Is Mental Illness?” on Monday, January 27 at 6:00 p.m. at Innovation Hall at the UNE Portland Campus. 

After thoroughly reviewing the controversies this latest edition of the DSM ignited, McNally will introduce a new, radically different approach to conceptualizing psychopathology that promises to transform our understanding of mental illness.

 A Professor and Director of Clinical Training at Harvard University, McNally has authored more than 440 publications, most concerning anxiety disorders such as posttraumatic stress disorder, panic disorder, phobias, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. His books include such widely-read titles as Panic Disorder: A Critical Analysis, Remembering Trauma, and What is Mental Illness? He has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, has served on the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM-IV PTSD and Specific Phobia committees, and was an advisor to the DSM-5 Anxiety Disorders Sub-Workgroup. He is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, and the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies winner of the 2005 Distinguished Scientist Award from the Society for the Science of Clinical Psychology. He is on the Institute for Scientific Information’s “Highly Cited” list for psychology and psychiatry.  
This will be the first lecture of the Spring 2020 season for the Center for Global Humanities. It will be followed by four more events between now and April 2020. Lectures at the Center are always free, open to the public, and streamed live online. For more information, please visit:

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