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The Movement for Global Mental Health has defined the person suffering psychopathology in low-income countries as an abused and suffering subject in need of saving by biomedical psychiatry. Based on fieldwork in Kerala, South India, carried out at psychiatric clinics and a psychosocial rehabilitation centre, this paper examines patients’ experiences of illness, the degree and quality of family support, and attributions made to the role of ‘sneham’, or love, in recovery. The role of love and family involvement may help explain the provocative finding by WHO epidemiological studies that ‘developing’ countries – and India in particular – showed better rates of recovery from severe mental illness when compared to developed countries.


This is the accepted manuscript of a book chapter eventually published as: Halliburton, Murphy. "The House of Love and the Mental Hospital Zones of Care and Recovery in South India." The Movement for Global Mental Health: Critical Views from South and Southeast Asia. Amsterdam University Press, 2021, pp. 211-pp.242. ISBN: 9789048550135



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