Reducing stigmatisation through film
“The contribution to knowledge is inherently tied to the screenplay,” Craig says.
The screenplay provides as practical space for Craig to explore and implement the finding of his analysis. A more human picture of mental illness would reduce the harmful stigmatisation faced by people with mental illnesses.
“The research will provide more resources to anti-stigma media critics and other writers, in their efforts to contribute to the de-stigmatisation of mental illness in films and the media.”
JCU PhD candidate Craig Middleton
“The research will provide more resources to anti-stigma media critics and other writers, in their efforts to contribute to the de-stigmatisation of mental illness in films and the media,” Craig says.
It’s an effort of essential importance considering the effects of stigmatisation on personal relationships, employment, and even the treatment of mental illness.
Beyond Craig’s screenplay and thesis, the outcome of his research will also be a film production guide that outlines a variety of techniques and their uses to humanise representations of mental illness in films.
“It can be used as a resource for filmmakers interested in telling stories about mental illness, or stories that include mental illness as a subject matter, or stories that portray symptoms commonly associated with a mental illness.”
From those frank conversations that the lights of the Mein Doppelganger exhibition illuminated to the dichotomous representations of mental illness that we soak up, popcorn in hand, from the big screen, Craig’s research is changing the face of film and mental illness.