Delusions as Storytelling Gone Wrong in Bad Life Situations: Exploring a Discursive Contextual Analysis of Delusions with Clinical Implications

This theoretical article by Bernard Guerin has been published in The Psychological Record. The abstract says:

“A contextual model of delusions drawing on discourse analysis is explored, which changes current attributional models to more concrete and observable forms of language-in-context. Most current models view delusions as internal beliefs that are the result of faulty reasoning or cognitive errors, whereas the present model treats delusions as natural discourses that have gone wrong or become exaggerated as strategies shaped by the person’s bad life situations and negative social relationships. Brief reviews are made of the properties attributed to delusional beliefs (Table 1) and of the current explanations for delusions (Table 2). An outline of a discursive contextual analysis is then given along with a review of the life contexts for those with ‘mental health’ issues. Discourse analysis is used to account for the delusional properties as discursive properties (Table 3). Delusions are then analyzed in two ways as normal discourse strategies gone wrong when trying to live in bad life contexts: (1) by analyzing ‘beliefs’ as a way of doing social behavior with language; and (2) by analyzing delusions as normal storytelling gone wrong from being shaped by bad social relationships. Table 5 gives some practical questions for therapists and researchers to explore people’s delusions as discursive strategies.”

You can read the full article from here.

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