From: Andrew Phelps <>


Subject: Re: [PsySR-humanrights] UN Investigator Says Long-Term Solitary Confinement in New York State Prisons Is Torture

Date: Wed 04/16/14 02:01 PM


The concern I have in "mental health" matters relates to what may be termed "structural violence." That was the main conversation in Trieste psychiatry, after Basaglia took over in 1971 and brought in the Foucault advocacy.

Uwy, I like the concern on structural violence in the forensic context, as you present that. What is needed is a working way to talk to the matter - something akin to the current PsySR focus on the matter of torture in the "security" context.





On Wed, 4/16/14, Uwy wrote:

I don't think we have a major difference of opinion here…but I wasn't making myself clear…Of course, real reform is purging the atrocities and corruption of the current US and military prison systems, and there is no rest until that happens.

But.there will always be a prison command structure, and complex security and detention issues and requirements in the best of prisons. Doctors treating prisoners cannot treat them as if it's just the two of them and the prisoners are their private patients. There has to be controls and oversight on the relationship between doctor and prison warden, i.e. between the security system and the therapeutic services.

.. It's just not easy to establish a dialogue.