pages, 60 photos, 65 illustrations, 15 x 21 cm, ISBN 978-3-925931-13-0.
Berlin: Peter Lehmann Publishing 1998. Published
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Kerstin Kempker (Ed.)
Escape into Reality: The Berlin Runaway-house
(= FLUCHT IN DIE WIRKLICHKEIT Das Berliner Weglaufhaus)
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When (ex-) users and survivors of psychiatry turn their back on detention
and chemical treatment and get over crises without psychiatric drugs.
A report about the first years of practise in the Berlin Runaway-House,
the only publicly founded antipsychiatric place of refuge.
"Escape into Reality" is reporting on the first years'
practise in the Berlin Runaway-house. This unique publicly founded
antipsychiatric place of refuge for (ex-) users and survivors of
psychiatry who are turning their back on detention and chemical
treatment and get over crises without psychiatric drugs was opened
in Germany in January 1996.
Beyond diagnoses, psychiatric drugs and electroshocks the support
around the clock by the staff half of them (ex-) users and
survivors of psychiatry themselves and the active living-together
are providing to the residents an alternative to the passive getting
Thoughtfully and self-critically, wildly and contradictorily 20
authors describe and illustrate extraordinary and daily events in
the Runaway-house, without any therapeutic ambitions. The chapters
start with the ten years' struggle until the opening and the constant
fight with the bureaucracy in the social departments. Subsequently
the staff and the residents vividly depict the results of the past
work, the coping with crises and the public response which implies
acknowledgement in press and TV as well as the hard resistance of
the neighbours. A very personal and exciting, excellently written
and multifarious collection of partly bizarre experiences.
Kerstin Kempker is co-founder of the Association for Protection against
Psychiatric Violence (running the Runaway-house),
social-scientist and working in the Runaway-house
since its opening. Author of Teure
Verständnislosigkeit Die Sprache der Verrücktheit
und die Entgegnung der Psychiatrie (Dear
and expensive incomprehension: The language of madness and the psychiatric
retort; Berlin 1991); editor of Statt
of psychiatry; Berlin 1993, together with Peter
about Kerstin Kempker