Jacqui Dillon to Speak on Hearing Voices

The standard medical model of human suffering treats experiences of voices and visions as symptoms of serious mental illness requiring treatment and eradication. Psychology professor Gail Hornstein is bringing British mental health expert and voice hearer Jacqui Dillon to MHC for a talk that challenges this notion of what it is like to hear voices.

Dillon is a writer, campaigner, speaker, and an internationally known mental health trainer specializing in psychosis, trauma, and dissociation. She will share her expertise in her talk “Bad Things That Happen to You Can Drive You Crazy!: Understanding Abuse, Trauma, and Madness and Working toward Recovery” Tuesday, March 22 at 7:30 pm in Dwight Hall, room 101.

In her lecture, Dillon will explore a growing body of evidence that reframes experiences of hearing voices and seeing visions into meaningful responses to overwhelming events, capable of being understood and integrated into a person’s life. Learning how voices and visions function as techniques of survival can be crucial to developing coping strategies and aiding full recovery.

Dillon is a director of Intervoice: The International Network for Training, Education, and Research into Hearing Voices and a leading figure in the Hearing Voices Network, an international collaborative organization of patients and professionals. Along with Professor Marius Romme and Dr. Sandra Escher, she coedited Living with Voices, an anthology of 50 voice hearers' stories of recovery. Currently she is coediting the forthcoming Demedicalizing Misery: Psychiatry, Psychology, and the Human Condition.

The lecture is free and open to the public and accessible parking is available. This event is co-sponsored by the Mount Holyoke College Department of Psychology and Education, the Western Massachusetts Recovery Learning Community, and the Freedom Center.