Lynne Friedli and Robert Stearn – Positive Affect as Coercive Strategy: Conditionality, Activation and the Role of Psychology in UK Government Workfare Programmes

William Viney writes – This is the fifth and final post introducing individual papers from a special issue of Medical Humanities, edited by myself, Felicity Callard, and Angela Woods. A more general overview of the special issue can be found here. In the last contribution to this special issue, Lynne Friedli and Robert Stearn reflect the Read the full article…

Dr. Lynne Friedli – ‘Welfare Reform and the Rise of Psychological Fundamentalism: The Case of Workfare’ (Lecture, Durham, 7th May 2014)

This paper is concerned with growing influence of  psychology  and the role of psycho-policy in formulating and gaining consent for the current regime of welfare reform, notably in the roll out of the Department for Work and Pensions Workfare programme.  What emerges is the construction of a psychological ideal that embodies the norms and values Read the full article…

Whistle While You Work (For Nothing): Positive Affect as Coercive Strategy – The Case of Workfare

In this post, Lynne Friedli and Robert Stearn look at the role of  psychological coercion, notably through the imposition of positive affect,  in UK Government workfare programmes. There has been little or no debate about the recruitment of psychology/psychologists into monitoring,  modifying and/or punishing  people who claim social security benefits. This silence raises important ethical questions, Read the full article…