Digital lecture by W.J.T. Mitchell "Mental Traveler: A Father, a Son, and a Journey through Schizophrenia"

W.J.T. Mitchell

5:00  - 6:30 p.m. CET

Online lecture

How does a parent make sense of a child’s severe mental illness? How does a father meet the daily challenges of caring for his gifted but delusional son, while seeking to overcome the stigma of madness and the limits of psychiatry? Mitchell’s memoir tells the story—at once representative and unique—of one family’s encounter with mental illness and bears witness to the life of the talented young man who was his son.

Gabriel Mitchell was diagnosed with schizophrenia at age twenty-one and died by suicide eighteen years later. He left behind a remarkable archive of creative work and a father determined to honor his son’s attempts to conquer his own illness. Before his death, Gabe had been working on a film that would show madness from inside and out, as media stereotype and spectacle, symptom and stigma, malady and minority status, disability and gateway to insight. He was convinced that madness is an extreme form of subjective experience that we all endure at some point in our lives, whether in moments of ecstasy or melancholy, or in the enduring trauma of a broken heart. Gabe’s declared ambition was to transform schizophrenia from a death sentence to a learning experience, and madness from a curse to a critical perspective.    
Shot through with love and pain, Mental Traveler shows how Gabe drew his father into his quest for enlightenment within madness...

The Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium invited W.J.T. Mitchell for a ‘thinkers-in-residence’ programme on image science.
We invite you to join us for his second digital lecture followed by debate.

Registration is required to receive the livestream link.

5:00 Introduction
(Bart Verschaffel,
President KVAB Class of the Arts)
5:05 Digital lecture by W.J.T. Mitchell
6:10 Debate
(Moderator: Hilde Van Gelder,
Coordinator of the Thinkers' Programme)
6:30 End

You can find the link to the invitation here.

Curation by Bart Verschaffel and Hilde Van Gelder

Lieven Gevaert Centre
KU Leuven, Faculty of Arts
Blijde Inkomststraat 21 pb 3313
B-3000 Leuven

Lieven Gevaert Centre
UC Louvain, Archéologie et d'histoire d'art
FIAL - Place Blaise Pascal 1 bte L3.03.13
B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve