Mad Literature

Syllabus: Mad Literature

In this course, students will analyze literature through the lens of mad studies, an interdisciplinary discourse that seeks to restructure psychiatric models of mental illness by attending to lived experiences of neurodiversity, redefine definitions of sanity and madness, and interrogate the power dynamics surrounding madness. Through readings posted to ICON, students will be introduced to mad studies (and disability studies more broadly) and will consider how it might inform their readings of literary works—both personal accounts and fictional representations of mental illness—as well as how it might reframe their understanding of madness. Together, we’ll attack the stigma surrounding mental illness and challenge its pathologization.