Did You Ever Meet a Normal Person? Understanding Depression as a Continuum and a Process

Peter de Jonge, professor of Psychiatric Epidemiology, presents an alternative way to look at depression

Organisator Studium Generale

di 17 februari 2015 20:00

In this series we explore the world of mental illness and heath. Is this difference fixed, or fluid? And why are more and more people diagnosed with a mental illness?

According to the World Health Organization, there is no health without mental health. But what is mental health exactly? Is there a clear separation between the 'mentally healthy' and the 'mentally ill'?
Peter de Jonge argues that this is not the case. He will focus on depression, according to the WHO one of the strongest contributors to the worldwide burden of disease. He will present an alternative way of looking at this phenomenon. Central in his view is the conceptualization of emotional problems as a process, rather than a black-and-white comparison between persons that either ‘have’ or ‘do not have’ depression.

De Jonge will ground his argument with recent findings of the project ‘How Nuts Are the Dutch’ (hoegekisnl), which explores the dimensionality and distribution of affective symptoms in the Netherlands.

Professor Peter de Jonge was trained as a clinical psychologist and a psychometrician at the University of Amsterdam, and did his Ph.d. in Psychiatry at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. In 2002, he moved to the department of Psychiatry at the UMCG Groningen. In 2006, he received a VIDI entitled Somatic Depression: a cardiotoxic disorder in search of treatment. In 2012, he received a VICI entitled Decontructing Depression. He published over 200 papers in English peer-reviewed journals, and was/is involved in supervising over Ph.d students. He received over 3 M euro of funding for his research, from governmental and non-profit organisations.