ABSTRACT

In chapter 2 we argued that rational society saw itself inverted in the post-second world war era as the boundaries between good and bad, right and wrong, them and us, became nebulous. The distinctions of logical binary oppositions blurred so that in both science and society anchorages slipped and polarities became a matter of relativity. The search for the difference between the 'abnormal' and the 'normal' was fundamentally cradled in the idea of deviancy. Grounded in the sciences of sociology, psychiatry, and criminology, deviance was at one time considered in terms of individual traits versus societal norms; at another it became an inquiry into 'madness' or 'badness'; and, at still another, it was formed in the relationship between criminal behaviour and mental disorder. Laid to rest somewhere between the macro- and micro-analyses of the sociologists, and the transformations of the anti-psychiatry lobby, the deviant disappeared as different and made way for the emergence of the modern day mentally disordered offender as a field of study.