Many people strive to be normal, and deviation from accepted norms can feel likefailure. But why do we want to be normal? And what does that mean? Ordinary? Sane? Similar? When probed, the notion of normality starts to look fragile. It is not clear who decides what being normal means or who is entitled to say. Nonetheless, concerns about conforming and being accepted are deeply pervasive.
With an extraordinary diversity of perspectives, the authors featured in this collection – all psychotherapists – use biographical accounts, political analyses and clinical vignettes to challenge the concept of normality. Through these stories and discussions, it emerges that our very uniqueness, oddness and differences as individuals are what make us fully human.
At a time of rapid social change, the freedom to be oneself – whatever form that takes – is at the core of contemporary debate, and this volume makes a vital contribution to that project.