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This paper deliberates over the prevailing sociological perspective on mental hospitals is congruent with the caricature presented in the movie, "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest." It details the view of mental illness as "residual deviance" and mental hospitals as total institutions in which patients who are not really sick are oppressed by authoritarian mental health professionals. This paper gives propositions to explain why such a negative stereotype has been widely accepted, and how the reformist bias of sociologists and naive reliance on pseudopatient studies have led some sociologists to "forget that mental patients actually may suffer pain."
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