Madness Radio: Voices And Visions from Outside Mental Health explores 'madness' from beyond conventional perspectives and mainstream treatments, featuring survivors, authors, advocates, professionals, and artists.
Hosted by Will Hall, Madness Radio launched in 2005 on Valley Free Radio and aired more than 200 shows since then. We've been broadcast on KBOO in Oregon, syndicated on other stations through Pacifica, and currenrly podcasting on Spotify, Stitcher, iTunes, Pandora, and Google Play. More info on our About page.
Check out the Madness Radio book! Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness gathers edited show interviews and additional content, and is available in print and as a free download.
Madness Radio is an affiliate of Mad In America Radio!
Check out www.madinamerica.com. Theme music courtesy Bonfire Madigan. Thanks to past Madness Radio Producers Jenka Soderberg, Nina Packebush, Leah Harris and Jeremy Lanzman. And thanks to our 190+ Madness Radio Kickstarter donors for supporting the show!
Listen to recent shows below or find us in your favorite podcast app, subscribe to be notified of new episodes on the right, browse by topics, search by keyword, or see a list all 200+ shows by date and title, in the archive. (Shorter versions are also available.)
Madness Radio is creative commons copyright! Please copy, post, and share freely. And get involved: send topic ideas, leave comments, ask FM stations to air us, leave an iTunes review, or make a donation.
Does hearing God’s voice make you mentally ill? Will psychiatry help you cope with grief and rejection – or make things worse? After a distressing romantic breakup Alison Smith went to her college clinic for help – and was locked up, drugged, and labeled psychotic. Positive and mysterious voices – including visions of Jesus – suddenly turned dark and persecutory, and Alison was driven into psychiatry-induced madness. Co-hosts Will Hall and Jacks McNamara join Alison to discuss religious voices – and psychiatric violence to suppress them. Alison’s writing has appeared in Granta, Real Simple, and PBS’s Stories from the Stage, and her acclaimed memoir Name All the Animals was named a ten best books of the year by People magazine (yes, that People magazine). A coming of age story, Name All the Animals opens on the day Alison’s brother died in a car crash and explores themes of grief, faith and sexuality. Alison lives in Northampton, MA and is working on a new memoir about hearing voices. www.namealltheanimals.com Transcript
Audiobook mp3 of Chapter 7 “A Ten Day Voyage”, from The Politics of Experience and the Bird of Paradise, by R.D. Laing, read by Will Hall.
Full book .mp3 (cntrl/rtclck save as to download):
Full book as chapters on this YouTube playlist:
Individual chapters as .mp3 (ctrl/rtclick to save as):
Why are assault, kidnapping, and torture illegal – unless you have a psychiatric diagnosis? Is psychiatry’s legal double standard unjust in the same way a double standard would be for being female or Black? Should equal rights for the disabled also mean equal rights for mad people – because society sees us as disabled? Does disability justice mean psychiatric abolition – and reparations? Tina Minkowitz, survivor of psychiatric institutionalization and a human rights lawyer, helped draft and negotiate the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Tina joins Will Hall to discuss why abolition of forced psychiatric treatment means the non-negotiable right to be an equal human being. Tina is founder and president of the Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry, and author of Reimagining Crisis Support: Matrix, Roadmap and Policy. 58 min version transcript here
National Council on Disability from Privileges to Rights report
10th International Conference on Human Rights and Psychiatric Oppression
Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Reimagining Crisis Support: Matrix, Roadmap and Policy (free download)
Are psychotherapy’s assumptions completely misguided? What is really at stake in the research and practice of psychology? Is it possible to take a step back and see “psy” for what it is? Craig Newnes is a Jewish dad, grandad, musician, writer, and former director of one of the UK’s largest NHS Psychological Therapies Directorates, and he joins Will Hall to discuss a critical view of the entire psy industry. Past editor of the British Psychological Society clinical psychology division newsletter for 19 years, Craig has doctorates in History and Clinical Psychology and currently edits the Journal of Critical Psychology Counseling and Psychotherapy. He has published over 200 articles and 25 books, including the upcoming Psychomusicology, available from Egalitarian Publishing. (58 min version) (transcript here)
Racism in Psychology
Finniendo – an illustrated saga for children
52 Ways to Change Your Life.
Tearagh’t: a novel
Teaching Critical Psychology
A Critical A to Z of Electroshock
Clinical Psychology: A critical examination
Inscription, Diagnosis, Deception and the Mental Health Industry: How Psy governs us all
How does the terror of child abuse inspire the heights of spiritual awakening? Are risky behaviors with drugs and extreme sports also a search towards healing? Co-hosts Dina Tyler and Will Hall talk with Paris Williams, who has a PhD in clinical psychology and went through his own experience of extreme states and madness. Paris took flight from extreme childhood trauma and became a world class hang glider pilot, competing world wide, soaring miles above the earth, and risking his life again and again. Today he works as a therapist for people with psychosis, including from a spiritual emergence and trauma perspective and as a teacher in Hakomi psychotherapy, and is the author of the book Rethinking Madness. (58 min version) (Transcript here)
Therapist Ryan Hofrichter flips the mic on Madness Radio host Will Hall for a wide-ranging discussion about madness, psychiatry, and being a therapist. Topics include power in therapy, psychiatric diagnosis harms, naming ethical and professional dilemmas, working outside of the mainstream mental health system, understanding emotional distress in context, tragedy as potentially transformative, the psychiatric survivor movement, preventing mental health crises by creating healthy communities… and more. Thanks Ryan for listening! (58 min version)
Full interview transcript and details on Ryan’s website here.
Can teens lead their own mental health education? Are suicidal feelings and self harm “contagions” that young people shouldn’t talk about? How can mutual aid and peer support solve our youth mental health crisis? Felicity Krueger emerged out of trauma, anxiety, and the challenges of multi-racial adoption to become a leading teen advocate in Kentucky and nationwide. Felicity joins Oryx Cohen and co-hoist Will Hall to discuss her work today, including training youth in Emotional CPR – a peer support response to distress and an alternative to police and pharma. (Transcript here.)
Are trauma, medication injury, and holistic health connected? Does Lyme disease infection relate to tardive dyskinesia from psychiatric drugs? Is there a spiritual purpose to debilitating illness? Monica Cassani is a psychiatric survivor and early leader in internet support with the Beyond Meds – Everything Matters website and community. Monica’s struggle with chronic iatrogenic illness led her to discover personal renewal and spiritual awakening – and gain a deeper understanding of illness, healing, and the ecological nature of the self. (Alternate 58 min version here.)
Tardive Dyskinesia, Chronic Lyme Disease, and Infection – Mad In America
Everything Matters – Beyond Meds
MDs and systemic infections (Lyme and Tardive Dyskinesia)
Read this book! Is discriminating against people who have — or are labeled with — psychiatric disabilities ever justified? Is denying equality before the law necessary in times of crisis – or does it open the door to widespread abuse and violence? Journalist and community development activist Rob Wipond’s new book Your Consent Is Not Required: The Rise in Psychiatric Detentions, Forced Treatment, and Abusive Guardianships is a devastating investigative exposé of the normalized assault, kidnapping, and torture that is forced psychiatric treatment. It is hard to conclude anything other than this abusive practice must be brought to an end. So what can be done? Rob and Will Hall discuss these issues and more, and delve into what voluntary alternatives are possible — and how to stop the current dominant medicalized system from suppressing these alternatives. Rob has written a blistering account of some of psychiatry’s biggest lies; please read this book (if you can – advisory of upsetting content), join the abolition movement, and help sound the alarm to finally put an end to forced treatment based on disability. (58 min version) (transcript)
Should we reform – or abolish – psychiatry? Can capitalism provide mental health, or do we need some kind of socialism or anti-capitalism? Vesper Moore is a leader in the youngest wave of the psychiatric survivor movement; he was radicalized against psychiatry as a teen when his mother sought help and met medical violence instead. Vesper joins co-hosts Jacks McNamara and Will Hall, two veterans of 15 years of movement organizing, to envision ending psychiatric harm and achieving real care for people in emotional distress. (Alternate 58 minute version here.)
When Karin Jervert withdrew from 5 psychiatric medications the conflicting voices and forces in her head became pathways to art and spirit. Through Buddhism and earth-based ceremony Karin discovered a new world – and a new sense of self – from her suffering. Co-hosts Jacks McNamara and Will Hall discuss art, ancestors, and the nature of reality with Karin, who today is arts editor for Mad In America. Karin creates nonfiction essays, visual art, graphic narratives, and poetry that explore transforming trauma – including the trauma of forced psychiatric treatment. (Alternate 58 min version here.)
When Cassie Wilson experienced mental distress due to an internship setting triggering past trauma memories, she called student counseling – and then police came to her home, handcuffed her, and detained her in a hospital for 6 days. In this episode Cassie, a psychiatric survivor and student of human rights and neuroscience, discusses with co-hosts Jacks McNamara and Will Hall her experiences in the psychiatric system and how this experience aligns with the violent and carceral dynamics of prisons. Cassie wrote about this experience in an essay entitlted “At the Forefront of Medicine: My Summer Involuntary Hospitlization” which can be read in the Chicago Maroon. You can contact her at cassidyw312 (at) (gmail) (dot) com. (Alternate 58 minute version here.)
Mad Camp is coming! July 20-24 2023 mad people are gathering for summer camp in the forested mountains two hours north of San Francisco. You heard that right! Swimming, hiking, campfires, hanging out, napping, dancing, music, art, dancing, the stars… Mad Camp is all about community friendship and connection. And there are also stirrings of mad camps on the east coast in Europe! The all-volunteer Mad Camp organizers are now raising funds for scholarships — and we need your help and more volunteers!
Check out the Mad Camp website: www.madcamp.net!
Make a donation on our Donation page! www.madcamp.net
Mad Camp Email List Join Here: https://bit.ly/MadCampList
The essay from Mad In America Sept 2021 “Ending The Silence Around Psychedelic Therapy Abuse”, read by Will Hall:
Michael Pollan’s hugely influential new book on psychedelic medicine, How to Change Your Mind, is overly enthusiastic and largely uncritical. All the new hype and questionable science about miracle treatments as the next wave of cures for mental disorders leaves out huge risks, including the risk of therapy abuse…
Also check the companion essay with more detail about my personal experience with psychedelic therapists Aharon Grossbard and Francoise Bourzat of the Center for Consciousness Medicine at www.medium.com/@willhall, with updates and links at the end of that essay.