About Our Community

About the International Mad Studies Journal 

The International Mad Studies Journal (IMSJ) is a majority peer-reviewed academic journal which contributes to discussions and debate regarding ideologies and practices within mental health. In addition to peer reviewed articles, we seek out unique and unheard voices presented in creative platforms such as fictional writing, poetry, and other forms of artistry.

The Story Behind Us

IMSJ was founded by a psychiatric survivor in Narrm (Melbourne, Australia). This was in the context of working in academia and seeing the challenges of producing alternative knowledges and ideas in mental health. They gathered like minded people together predominately from Australia  but across the world. These were not just people who were consumers, survivors or ex-patients of mental health services but from a variety of professions. 

Together, we wanted to challenge the hegemony (dominance by one group over others) of traditional mental health discourse. We were tired of not seeing change. We wanted to actualise the visions that have been held by many in the past about capturing mad knowledge and different perspectives.

In 2020 we were lucky enough to receive a small grant to support our start up costs from the Regina Brindle Foundation. We are very grateful for this support in helping this idea come alive.

A Bit About Us: 

Just like Mad Studies itself, we are not one specific group of people and we do not have a single ideology or stance. We have diverse lived experiences and represent diverse professional backgrounds. However, we share a broad set of values and are united by our interest in critical and alternatives perspectives on mental health. We embrace a philosophy of community and welcome viewpoints and voices who have been marginalised and excluded. We aim to deepen the discussion and expand the parameters of academic voices by recognising embodied and experiential knowledge. 

Our Vision and Values

  • Diverse voices and perspectives.
  • Opposes hegemony and seeks to challenge power.
  • Embraces marginalised epistemologies and privileges mad and unheard voices.
  • Provocative and critical.
  • Founded on human rights, social justice, resistance, and desire for real change. 
  • Accessible and independent.
  • Transparent and responsive. 
  • Quality

Folks present at an IMSJ meeting 24.09.2021

Why are we involved in Mad Studies Journal? 

“Research, ideas and stories are very powerful. I want to be part of not only a journal, but a community, that tries to influence our wider consciousness and seeks transformational on the ground change”- Helena.

Academic writing on mental health is broken. This journal is an opportunity to fix it” – Chris

My academic career was positively disrupted by exposure to lived experience knowledge and perspective that should be central to teaching and research within the health professions. Sharing and promoting this work through journal publications is an important next step”Brenda