Social Representations, Temporality, Proper Noun and Mental Health

  • Noemi Graciela Murekian Universidad Nacional de Córdoba; Universidad Nacional de Quilmes (Argentina)
Keywords: social representations, mental health, temporality, proper noun, analogies and metaphors


The goal is to establish inter-dimensional links that involve social representations in the field of mental health: historicity and temporality, social and political contexts, ideas, practices and designations. In Jodelet’s words: “Social representations are in history and have a history” (Jodelet, 2015, p. 9). More specifically: “the study of representations makes it possible to capture history in the making” (Jodelet, 2015). At the same time, if naming is representing, and if the name is ontologized, such a name participates in social ontology in terms of symbol and crystallization (Moscovici, 1999). When these assumptions come into play in the psychosocial investigation of the processes for psychiatric reform, they gain weight and sense, as they enable us to discover how history, the act of naming, and social representations are intertwined. Indeed, the dispute on proper nouns within the mental health policy framework is no stranger than the classification of historical dramas or the use of analogies and metaphors such as “mental institution” and “concentration camps” (Goffman, 1981). A review of the validity of these debates seeks to relocate the analysis of its reproduction as a testimony of representations that refer to realities that continually need transformation.

Author Biography

Noemi Graciela Murekian, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba; Universidad Nacional de Quilmes (Argentina)

NOEMI GRACIELA MUREKIAN has a Doctorate from the University of Buenos Aires, (Faculty of Psychology) and a University degree in Sociology from the Universidad del Salvador (Argentina). She is a professor in charge of the master’s module "Transversal Dimension of the Psychosocial Intervention Project: Social Representations" in the Master's in Psychosocial Intervention and Research (Maestría en Intervención e Investigación Psicosocial - MIIPS), Faculty of Psychology (National University of Córdoba) and collaborator of the project "Care, Mental Health and Construction of Intangible Assets", Department of Social Sciences (National University of Quilmes). Email: