The Effect of Media Representations and Stigma on Public Perception of Mental Disorders from Late 20th to Early 21st Century
- 10.2991/assehr.k.211220.106How to use a DOI?
- Mental health stigma; Anti-stigma; Media representation; Misinformation
The late 20th and early 21st century was featured by the rapid growth of media and means of communication, and discussions on the effect media have on social stereotypes have attracted new academic attention. One of the existing stigmas being intensified by the media representation is the mental health stigma, from which patients with a history of mental disorders are often misunderstood by the society, and thus be socially isolated and personally discriminated against To understand how media contribute to the stigmatization process, the author came to the following conclusions through examing media’s representation of the mentally ill: first, newspaper articles and entertainment media often inaccurately attribute violence to mental disorders, while the fact is that only a small portion of violence is committed by the mentally ill. Secondly, the media draw causal relationships between terrorism and mental illnesses, especially when 9/11 and mass shootings became the center of public attention, although mental disorders alone are not sufficient predictors of terrorist activities. Lastly, medical terms appearing in newspapers and social media are frequently used in non-medical contexts that have a negative indication, resulting in stigmatization. All three factors reflect the role the media play contributing to mental health stigma. Researching about these three factors contributing to mental health stigma lays the foundation for future anti-stigma actions to take place. Further research may include effective ways to eliminate mental health stigma, allowing researchers to design solutions to counteract misunderstandings and to build successful communication.
- © 2021 The Authors. Published by Atlantis Press SARL.
- Open Access
- This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC license.
Cite this article
TY - CONF AU - Xintong Chen PY - 2021 DA - 2021/12/24 TI - The Effect of Media Representations and Stigma on Public Perception of Mental Disorders from Late 20th to Early 21st Century BT - Proceedings of the 2021 4th International Conference on Humanities Education and Social Sciences (ICHESS 2021) PB - Atlantis Press SP - 622 EP - 625 SN - 2352-5398 UR - https://doi.org/10.2991/assehr.k.211220.106 DO - 10.2991/assehr.k.211220.106 ID - Chen2021 ER -