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Nativist Psychosis: Impressions of Psychiatric and Intellectual Disability in Puerto Rican Literature, Medical Culture, and Jurisprudence

Rivera Morales, Natalia Mabel (2023) Nativist Psychosis: Impressions of Psychiatric and Intellectual Disability in Puerto Rican Literature, Medical Culture, and Jurisprudence. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This dissertation apprehends forms of oppositionality emanating from psychosocial atypicality that elude our discernment if we adhere to the conceptual strictures of agency. The terminus of the first chapter, my literature review, is to demonstrate that Puerto Rican nationalist literature and clinical propaganda situate the biopolitics of debilitation and feminist discourses on disability identity in productive tension. My second chapter examines a case of punitive psychiatry in 1950s Puerto Rico, wherein a local psychiatrist appointed by Governor Luis Muñoz Marín published a spurious psychiatric report diagnosing Civil Rights attorney Pedro Albizu Campos with paranoid schizophrenia. My third chapter parses a pseudo-psychoanalytic treatment of trauma-induced passivity observable among Puerto Rican males, posited by queer author and Nationalist, René Marqués. I offer a critique of Marqués’s rendering of masculine passivity qua externalized violence, suggesting instead that criminal acts constitute the only avenue for colonized subjects to reinstate their legal personhood. The alternative to criminal status within a colonial juridical apparatus is non-imputability on the basis of insanity. Lastly, my fourth and final chapter dissects the theatrical oeuvre of queer dramaturge Abniel Marat. I contend that Marat renders Governor Luis Muñoz Marín a paternal rapist of a juvenile queer community. Overall, I submit that colonial societies operate as open-air carceral sites wherein specific populations are targeted for iatrogenesis: injury attributable to clinical intervention and/or diagnosis. I argue that the Puerto Rican case of targeted iatrogenic harm anticipates the collusion between Government and Psychiatry to depoliticize justice-oriented activities of negatively racialized activists in the U.S. mainland.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Rivera Morales, Natalia Mabelnmr47@pitt.edunmr47
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairSotomayor Miletti, Áurea Maríaams389@pitt.eduams389
Committee MemberDuchesne Winter, Juanduchesne@pitt.eduduchesne
Committee MemberTenorio, Daviddtenoriog@pitt.edudtenoriog
Committee MemberRamos,
Date: 6 September 2023
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 13 April 2023
Approval Date: 6 September 2023
Submission Date: 6 August 2023
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 371
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Hispanic Languages and Literatures
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Puerto Rican Literature; Masculinist Nationalism; Disabled Masculinity; Punitive Psychiatry
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2023 19:17
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2023 19:17

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