posted by Dawn on .
I also have to write a question for my exam on "is it appropirate for social sciences to use the word 'abnormal' with mental illnesses. Explain"
I just need help with comming up with points
i was going to say no becauae
-it is just like any other illness
-they should not be condemmed for it
-they are able to function and live with it
any other ideas?! thanks!
I think "abnormal" is appropriate when it describes behavior that is not used by most people.
If using the statistical definition of abnormal, it just signifies a great difference from the mean of a normal distribution. Both mentally retarded and intellectually gifted would be considered abnormal in terms of intelligence.
However, using a cultural definition, it describes extreme variation from cultural norms, regardless of what these norms are. In Hitler's Germany, people sympathetic to the plight of Jews would be considered abnormal. In the old South of the USA, those who helped free slaves were considered abnormal. The context of the abnormality needs to be considered.
I would also consider the effect of the abnormality on those close to the abnormal person.
The answer to this question is not clear, but trying to answer it will help you to become more familiar with the vagueness of the definition of abnormality.