Commentary on the construction of Gender Dysphoria at Classifying Sex: Debating DSM 5.
On the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) website the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), is promoted as the “most comprehensive, current, and critical resource for clinical practice available to today's mental health clinicians and researchers of all orientations” (American Psychiatric Association, 2012a). The manual is ‘comprehensive,’ indeed; it has grown in size since its first edition to over 900 pages in its current DSM 5 incarnation. We could argue as Farley, the former president of the American Psychological Association, does that the DSM authors are contributing to an increase in “the relentless production of disorders and pathologizing of normal extremes” (Gornall, 2013: no page no.) and the facilitating of mental illnesses. In response to the publication of the DSM-5, a two-day conference at the University of Cambridge took place: Classifying Sex: Debating DSM-5, at which discussants debated the potential impact of the manual’s criteria for pathological, paraphilic and by default ‘normal’ sexualities, gender identities, and psychiatric practice. The delegates considered amongst many other topics the role of power and evidence, at least that is how I understood many of the contributions to the debate.
Citation : Davy, Z. (2013) Commentary on the construction of Gender Dysphoria at Classifying Sex: Debating DSM 5. Psychology of Women Review Section, 15 (2), pp. 63-67
Research Institute : Institute of Health, Health Policy and Social Care
Peer Reviewed : Yes